Saturday, February 20, 2010

Canada Red

We had to go to an event, just to say we were at The Olympics.

You can go to the concerts and freebies, you can walk the streets and sidewalks, you can be part of a featured exhibit, but there is nothing like a competition.

We had tickets to a Women's Hockey games game; Canada vs Sweden. In the first period, Canada scored six goals.

Amidst nutballs, babies, and a lot of Canada Red, in the second period, Canada scored four goals before Gord got back from the men's room. Next to us, one voice, then a few more, then many, shouting, "Go, Sweden, go!" Only in Canada do you root for the other team when they're down.

We left when it was 12 - 0, not being able to stomach the slaughter. Then it was back to Ice Gate for an interview for CBC's North by Northwest.

Jaz opened up the exhibit.

Brett visited with Jake & friends. Debi Pratt took us to dinner, and the next day, we finally had the delayed Inniskillin/Vincor letter in hand.

Orientation for some new docents included a wine tasting with those yummy ice wines from Inniskillin: Tony Lo, Joey Mok and Sanober Nair.

Moira, a friend from New York's Ice Dance Theater treated us to dinner and I gave her my red Olympic mittens. She wants us to create some paintings for their 25th anniversary at Rockefeller Center, so we wrote some lists for swift action - it would be October! We watched Men's finals in the bar as Evan Lysacek won the gold; with commentary from Moira, a real, live figure skater who knows all the players.

It's a roller coaster ride - teaching us to breathe, to let go, to be present.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A day of

All that adrenaline means only one thing: there will be a day of reckoning.

But first: what have we been doing since last week? Everyone asks.

The day after we opened, Heather Hiscox interviewed Gord for a short segment on CBC - we met Ian Hanomansing and Bob Nixon again in the newsroom.

On the way out, got nabbed by a producer for Mark Forsythe radio show.

Two days later we came back for the opening of the games. A rainy day. Gord and Ari worked on the fan/blower system - now it works.

At ICE GATE, the excitement of the games was everywhere. Here's Marjorie Johnson, working with the Richmond School District Olympic Ozone Choir, 3,500 voices strong in grades one to 12 from all the schools in Richmond; including 160 band students.

These kids are from Walter Lee Elementary and McNair High School. But the story that's soooo cool is someone in Richmond donated $300K to have those spiffy uniforms made for all 3500 of those students! I thought they were an Olympic team! And it turns out they were.

Then some sprightly characters from the Canadian Olympic Committee Cheering Squad wandered past ICE GATE, on their way to 'painting the town red', and spreading Olympic cheer, which was in ample supply, however cloudy the skies.

In the process I got the Canadian maple leaf painted on my cheek.

On the big screen outside City Hall, we watched the torch passed from a canoe in False Creek. A magician entertained crowds waiting in line for the OZone.

James Shih, from Japan Broadcasting Corp, stopped by and shot some pix of iCE GATE from the inside. Gary Young brought a couple of visitors from London, the host of the next Olympic (summer) games. They talked about legacies for businesses, and I had to ask myself: how about a legacy for the art? How about we preserve a section of ICE GATE for the next venue which hosts Paintings Below Zero.

We watched the opening on the tv back at the small apartment - KD Lang took down my house - and I loved the R&B version of 'Oh Canada!'

Back on the coast for this Saturday, we attended the wrap-up party for the dancers in PERFORMANCE FOR ICE GATE. Like millions of others around the world, we watched the athletes in ice skating, mogul skiing, snowboarding & hockey on television. Delayed, so we could wind past the ads. I paid some bills, did the laundry, talked on the telephone.

Today it hit and we finally had to ask ourselves, how long does tired last?

When the phone rings, I look at it and wonder if I have the energy to answer it and say 'hello' before it goes to voice mail.

Photographers contributing to today's post: Kent Kallberg, Caitlin Hicks, Brent Richter.