My enjoyment of Melbourne 2006 peaked early. The sheer joy of explaining an opening ceremony to your three year-old daughter is something that cannot adequately be put into words. To her, it all made sense: the flying tram, the absurdly colourful clothes of some of the nations, the big red dragon on the Welsh flag ("I want to see the dragon again, Daddy" was to be heard frequently on Wednesday night), Ron Barassi walking on water, Dame Kiri singing Happy Birthday to the Queen.
Opening/closing ceremonies of major sporting events stopped being fascinating a long time ago. I think it was the Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympics where they irretrievably crossed the boundary into the realm of surrealistic technicolour yawns masquerading as cultural ballets. After Sydney 2000 (the one where Captain Cook discovered Australia on choreographed bicycles) I thought that wanky, over-indulgent sports ceremonies could go no further. Cape Town 2003, the opening ceremony of the Cricket World Cup, in fact proved that.