We headed into the mountains last weekend to catch a couple of events at Whistler. The town of Whistler is designated a “resort municipality”, which means it's a resort first and foremost. The centre of town is the Whistler Village, which is also where you catch the gondolas up the twin ski mountains of Whistler and Blackcomb. There are only around 10,000 residents of Whistler, but a couple million people visit each year, mostly for the skiing.
First up: the men's Super-G on a shockingly warm day. Wearing long underwear under my jeans, I ended up stripping to just a t-shirt while we happily baked in the warm sun during the event. Above is a shot of the line to upload to the event on the chairlift they installed just for this purpose. I hear they've already sold the lift to another resort for after the Games. Again, as per IOC rules, I can't blog photos from inside the Olympic venues, but you can see my photos from the event in my Flickr set.
We walked around Whistler Village for a while after the event, and stumbled upon House of Doc playing on the big stage. They were great, but they were upstaged by this person who came dancing in, dressed like a goat. She's wearing a sign that says something about a small town in Italy, but I really don't know what her deal was. She was awesome, though, and she was joined by this man with a flag (I don't know what his flag said).
Oh, yeah. I also totally danced with the goat. I saw a blue-jacketed Olympics volunteer take photos, and he was very friendly when I asked him if he'd send me a copy. The next morning, this pic was waiting in my inbox. The kindness of strangers!
So, I finally caved and bought a Lululemon hoodie. I'm in love with it, and that's all I'm going to say about it. A few minutes after I took this ridiculous photo, a woman tapped me on the shoulder and asked to take a photo of my hair. She was so cute and smiley, I gave her two thumbs up and a big smile. Then her friend came over and we got to talking. They're bus drivers from Texas, up here working the games shuttling people between venues up at Whistler. They absolutely gushed about how friendly everyone here is, that they feel like a part of the family and they're having a huge amount of fun. It was so great to chat with them. I'm getting really sick of my hair, but I love that it's a conversation starter. Speaking with perfect strangers is my favourite thing about this weeks-long party.
We saw the first half of the two-man bobsleigh event on Saturday, which was pretty cool. It was neat to see the sliding centre. Then we headed back to the Village where we met up with friends for some grub and beer, and caught the first half of the Fire & Ice show they put on every night – snowboarders and skiers do schmancy jumps through rings of fire!
I'm happy to be back in Vancouver, where I plan to see more stuff. No more sports, just culture. (Except, of course, for women's and men's hockey, but that'll be watched on the TV. Go Canada go!)