The country seems a quieter place now that the Olympics have ended. Even though they were centred in London, the "vibe" was certainly felt up here in the north.
I'm not the most sporty of people - not even the armchair variety - so my cup wasn't exactly running over with excitement in the run up to the big event, even though I was proud, and a little nervous, that it was being held here.
I have to admit, even though I wasn't glued to the tele - unlike some members of my family (namely youngest son) - I did enjoy the bits of it I watched, especially the women's football which was a bit of a surprise. I also caught a bit of the tennis and watched Tom Daly achieve his bronze on the edge of my seat. I'm so pleased that he got a medal, and whilst people were hoping he'd get gold, I think the bronze was an amazing achievement and I'm looking forward to seeing him in Rio, when I'm sure he's going to be even better.
The sport I enjoyed most though was the equestrian. Now, I don't understand dressage, so I didn't find that particularly entertaining, but I just loved the three day eventing and the show jumping. I took me back to my teenage days when I was horsey mad, and I have a sudden craving to re-read my old Jilly Coopers.
I'm delighted that Zara did well and that we got two more golds. The show jumping team event had me biting my nails down to my knuckles. I was a bit sad for Nick Skelton though, as it would have been nice for him to get the individual gold. What an amazing person, to have come back from a broken neck, a hip replacement and now due to have an operation on his back, and to ride so well. It just goes to show that people can achieve anything if they put their minds to it.
I've read a few writerly blogs recently, comparing our craft to training for the Olympics. And whilst we may not have the physical endurance and stamina it certainly takes a lot of dedication to get that book or books on the shelves. It's easy to become envious when you see those shiny spines on the bookshelves, just as it might be to see athletes on the podium, but it must be remembered that its the tiny steps which are taken each day which lead the end result. A poignant reminder to keep slogging away.
I'm pleased that the Olympics have gone so well, both from an organisational point of view and that we bagged so many medals. Britain has shown itself in its best light this year, and it's definitely been a year to remember.
But on a more personal level, whilst part of my is sorry that its over, I'm quite pleased to get
some decent drama back on the TV, of the none sporting variety.