Though the opening ceremonies are still more than a week away (February 12 at 5 PM PST) Olympic fever has descended upon Vancouver, for good or for bad.
The good: A thrilling cultural line-up including the inaugural show, The Show Must Go On, at the Milton and Fei Wong Experimental Theatre located in the iconic SFU Woodwards building. The sports, of course. A plethora of public art exhibits centred around Granville Street's walkable Cultural Olympiad. The completed Canada Skytrain Line which conveniently stretches from the downtown core all the way to the airport. And mammoth, skyscraper-height advertisements cheering 'Go Canada' and 'Go World,' in turn.
The bad: Road closures (already affecting daily commutes.) Increased traffic. Inevitable protests. And an ambivalent citizenry (many Vancouverites are bowing out of the celebrations, fearing unreasonable commutes and displeasurable crowds.) Does this happen in every host city?
I, for one, am excited about the Olympics (save for the mass over-expenditures) and hope to participate in what ways I can. Namely, watching the Opening Ceremonies with a contingent of friends. Braving public transit (wait times are expected to be through the roof) to take in the Cultural Olympiad, particularly the new First Nations commissions gracing the Canada Place extension, home of the Games' International Broadcast Centre. And interviewing members of the More than Gold and Billy Graham Rapid Response Teams for a magazine piece.
For good or for bad, the show must go on.
Welcome World. Go Canada.