British ambassador’s D.C. Olympic opening


British Ambassador Sir Peter Westmacott admires the Olympic torch at the embassy’s opening ceremony watch party Friday. (Courtesy of Carrie Dorean/The British Embassy )

Good times to be British ambassador to Washington, what with the queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the 2012 Olympics. But that meant Sir Peter Westmacott was stuck in D.C. watching the opening ceremony on television Friday night.

“I’m hugely excited about it. For the first time ever, I began to say to myself, ‘Maybe I should have been in London,’ ” he told us. “But then I immediately said, ‘No, you can’t possibly be in London because you have to give a party to celebrate the Olympics here in Washington.’ ”

The embassy erected half a dozen giant screens throughout the residence, invited 600 friends (including Mayor Vincent Gray), and offered an interactive photo booth, Olympic-themed cocktails, and fish and chips. Westmacott showed off one of the official Olympic torches and said his countrymen are “delighted that the eyes of the world are on the United Kingdom for some good, fun, positive reasons.” Duty done, he slipped out to catch a late-night flight — to London for a well-timed vacation.

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