With the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, our city has been crawling with crazed fans from all over the world. Let me say, being a Vancouverite in the midst of the madness has been a little stressful, but exciting to say the least! There were plenty of free events downtown and in the surrounding cities that were really accessible and a lot of fun! During the first week my friends and I went out 4 out of 5 weeknights and got home well after 11:30pm every time. Although I almost killed myself of exhaustion in the process, I’m glad that I was really putting in the effort to participate.
I remember the first show we went to and hearing Grand Derangément, a band from Nova Scotia. They actually stopped in the middle of their set so that we could watch the first Canadian Gold medalist receive his prize. I remember waiting more than 2 hours to see Alexisonfire play for free, only to find that during the first line of the first song they played, the barricade broke and they had to cancel because of safety issues. I remember walking down Granville Street at 10pm on a weeknight and running into a full on street hockey game with a swarm of spectators surrounding. I remember getting a text message at 7am on the morning of the free Deadmau5 show informing me that there was already a line, then missing the show because the venue was at capacity at 3pm (6 hours before the show). I remember countless sing-a-longs to our national anthem with people I didn’t know. I remember sitting by the big screens with Moorea, watching the hockey game, cheering for my country like it was for life or death. There are so many moments from those 2 weeks that I will remember for a long time to come.
It was completely surreal watching some of the sports on TV and realizing that they’re all happening within 2 hours from here, or that all of those crowds really were real! Watching TV and seeing wide, swooping shots of the city that I’ve lived in for the last 4 years has been completely refreshing. For once I can really step outside of myself and really see the city’s beauty from a different perspective. I can cheer for my city, and my country because I’m in the middle of it.
Canadians aren’t really known for showing their patriotism off to the world, but you’d be surprised how much pride we have.