O-Ringen is an amazing meeting point. Both for making new friends as well as keeping in touch with the ones you already have. It’s touching to listen to the older ones when they are talking about the development they have experienced in the Forrest. It is moving when ten year old girls are helping each other when one of them can’t find the control that she needs to find to not ruin the day.
It’s also interesting to meet some of the thousand organizers. Many of them are not only “sacrificing” the competition to work, they also have weeks of preparations behind them, which for some of them means a long travel between their home and Sälen.
An interesting meeting point is the start. Manty of the competitors seem to have a routine they go through before they head out. Others, especially the ones who are starting to see the end of their O-Ringen careers, are talking to the organizers before they start. Such as Erik Lindberg from Karlsbyheden, who came to the start where HJS Vansbro were in charge.
Erik was in a fantastic mood and had a few minute long conversation with the organizers Hans Samuelsson and Erik Olsson. You could hear them all laugh together. A few minutes later the organizers surprised Per Nilsson from Fagersta OK with a song!
Someone apparently knew that is was his 83rd birthday today! Per Also participated at Oringen in Sälen 2008, when he was turning 75. When he left the starting place, the organizers were cheering him on.
When Margareta Hansson, Storviks OK, came close to the start tent there were a special feeling among the organizers. There is nothing weird with that. The participators in the 90-class are greeted with respect.
I thought that my walk from the arena to the starting area was tough. Margareta seemed unaffected by the 500 meter long hill when she grabbed a map and head out to find the controls.
O-Ringen is the amazing meeting point of diversity.
CHRISTER GRUHS , O-Ringen Week columnist