Saturday, March 6, 2010

A Vancouver Tour

Your roving reporter here sharing some scenes from the Vancouver 2010 Olympic games. Our Thursday trip into Vancouver for the men's US/Norway hockey game started early in the morning, though not quite as early as the figure skating. I atleast rose with the sun instead of before it. Caffeine was still necessary, and I felt quite bleary eyed on sky train heading downtown.
We made it downtown with plenty of time to spare as there were none of the anticipated line-ups for sky train. After locating a McDonald's for breakfast, we couldn't find a Tim's, we decided that we could kill some time wandering through Chinatown. (The gates for the game wouldn't open for another hour.) We saw several small Chinese shops open for the day, and Jonathan decided we needed a picture of the narrowest building in the world. This is the Sam Kee building on the west edge of Chinatown not far from the Sun Yat Sen gardens. When it was originally built, it was the width of the grey paint you see in the picture. Extra space was created by adding on bow front windows. The building was later modified and made wider and is now one of the historical landmarks of Vancouver.

When the hockey game was finished, we decided that we would take advantage of being downtown and check out some of the Olympic sites. Unfortunately, this inexperienced tourist didn't look things up on the internet before we went and so missed some cool things. We did find Irish house (follow the loud music) as well as USA house. Irish house got kind of a bad name with its neighbors as they had loud parties into the wee sma's of the night.

USA house, which was across the street, was quite disappointing as they didn't allow people into anything other than the store. (What sticks in the mud.) All the other countries, including Canada, used this as a tourist information gimick and provided lots of neat things like free food. Irish house even provided the Stout - hence the loud parties. But USA house just wanted you to come in and spend your money.

This lovely lady was one of our fabulous Vancouver volunteers. She sat on this replica lifeguard chair and gave directions through her loud speaker. I wish I had a picture of the crowds as I have never seen anything like it. The only thing I could compare them to would be downtown New York City. It was wall to wall people. We did make it down to see the torch, and the picture at the start of the blog was taken through the chain link fence. (The fence was later modified so that pictures could be taken more easily.) Here is a picture of the rings, I am going to say they are golden here, but I really couldn't prove that very easily. The barge that they rested on was out in Coal Harbor and one of Vancouver's many sulfer mills is in the background.

This is your roving reporter signing of from Vancouver, British Columbia.

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