I work in downtown Vancouver and it has been interesting watching the slow ramp up to the Olympic games for the past several months. The pace has picked up in the last few weeks as the games are right around the corner. There is a security detail blocking the entrance to the street that leads up to Canada Place and the poor hotel staff have to stand out in front of the entrance to Waterfront Centre with their luggage carts and there are plenty of tent-like structures set up for goodness knows what.
I’m starting to see more and more of the volunteers in their blue coats wandering around and there is definitely more people in the core hitting up the lunch spots. I’ve taken to bringing my lunch now to avoid the crowds and they are only going to get thicker once the spectators descend so I may as well get used to it now. The Skytrain now has announcements at specific stations telling visitors how to transfer to a bus to get to other venues off the train route and many of the trains have had extra cars added to them. They can only put so many cars on though as the stations are only so long. There are all kinds of scary predictions of hours long waits to get on a train during peak travel time, I’m hoping they are erring on the side of caution but who knows? We won’t know how challenging it is going to be until it happens so no points in worrying about it now.
I have no plans on going to any gatherings free or otherwise and we definitely didn’t get any tickets to actual events they tend to be priced a little rich for our blood and both Tom and I are kind of crowd adverse. I will probably watch some of the TV coverage like I’ve done with games past it will just be a little more interesting to see how well they can carry the games off here in the hometown.
The snow or lack of it is the big story. This has been an unseasonably warm Winter, not unexpected and frankly not unwelcome at least from my standpoint after the last couple of Winters we had to endure here , but it hasn’t been all that good for the games. I’ve had colleagues from the States mention the lack of snow on the local hills so it has definitely been a story in the news. I heard even David Letterman cracked wise about it. They keep saying everything will be fine with the existing snow pack, the man-made and trucked in snow they have and I hope it’s true as whether people like it or not it’s coming and we’re gonna be paying for this for a while so best it is successful.