We’re only two days away from the 2010 Winter Olympics and you can really start to feel it in Vancouver! With national houses beginning to open to the public, guest lists for clubs and events quickly filling up, road closures and a swarm of smurfs on the streets (our term of endearment for Olympic volunteers), get ready to overload your senses!
You can’t look around without being exposed to some form of Olympic paraphernalia. From the red Olympics mittens to the patriotic Canadian flags hanging from every building (and the Aussie Boxing Kangaroo too), it’s hard not to feel the pressure to get some gear of your own. But then you’ll arrive at The Bay (the official Olympics clothing suppliers) and see the long lineup of new tourists and think twice about reliving the nightmare of last Boxing Day. Tip: If you want Olympics gear without the lineup, try Zellers (also owned by The Bay Company).
Even if you don’t get the gear you can at least experience the national houses and taste all the foods they’re bringing in. The Swiss national house opened last Friday on Granville Island serving cheese, chocolate and raclettes. The Aboriginal Pavilion will open this Friday night and serve aboriginal cuisine (there are rumours of some bison sliders). And even if you don’t make it to the houses, heaps of restaurants and cafes have put together special Olympic menus and dishes for your dining pleasure.
Much to the dismay of the sleep deprived Vancouverites living near the new Irish House (normally referred to as Doolin’s Irish Pub), the Olympics are bringing in more sound than many hoped for. Dozens of irritated Vancouverites called the police last night to complain about the loud music blasting from the pub.
Once the games start though, these Vancouverites will hardly have an excuse to stay at home at night. Every night of the Olympics, there will be fabulous not-to-be-missed concerts including Les Cowboys Fringants at Place de la Francophonie (the Francophone House), Feist at the Orpheum, and much much more.
This might be the only sense that won’t have a reason to be pleased during the Olympics as it brings in hundreds of smokers to the city and attempts to squish everyone into already congested skytrains and buses. Even smokers won’t be pleased as they realize that there are very few places in the city where smoking is legal.
Ah well, the Olympics doesn’t come around all that often. I heard a good quote the other day about it: It’s like your roommate decided to throw a party you didn’t approve of. You can either sit in your room and sulk about it, or you can go out and enjoy the party.
I hope you enjoy the party!