Is there room in your canoe?

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Here I go writing about the weather again..something I have always regarded as a reporter’s last gasp.

But the Olympics are coming to town folks…not only that but it’s the Winter Olympics and Vancouver isn’t really a winter town. Yes, the ambient temperature has been above normal for a couple of weeks and yes, the snow is sluicing off the local mountains. They have enough to ski and such up at Whistler…Whistler was never in question (people can stem christi there six months from now in bikinis if they like)…but Vancouver’s local peaks are praying that the freezing level will plummet.

They might get their wish , but unfortunately,  it’s time for the warm Pacific currents to do their cyclical fandance..El Nino..and no amount of Olympic hype will put the brakes on that.

It’s soggy and grey and mild. It’s worm weather..the kind of weather when you can damn near smell the worms…and you have to wonder how they sold Vancouver as a Winter Olympic venue to the I.O.C. This is not Innsbruck. This is not Lillehammer. This is not the spot you seek if  you want to feel all Currier and Ives. When the big tv networks pan their cameras across the Vancouver tableau a month from now they may very well find a sea of humanity walking wet dogs under golf umbrellas.

This can be one of the most soul-gnawing, depressingly gloomy canvasses on planet earth during the month of February. People jump off bridges here to brighten their day. It’s very sad (like the weather)  but true.

I just finished interviewing passersby on how they cope with all this dreck. Some people eat chocolate and some people sing. Many of us exercise. Without getting all endocrinological, we all know that exercise releases something helpful within. As a bonus, if you do it right, something on the outside may start to look pretty good too. All of which means you might look respectable on a beach..and that’s another way Vancouverites cope with their winter. They travel. They get the hell out of Dodge. There are Olympic television commercials every five seconds now, all of them aimed at repeatedly preaching that The World is Coming. Good, I say. Good for The World. I hope The World realizes that many Vancouverites will be headed in the opposite direction.  They are the wet people you will pass in the airport. Some want to avoid the big Olympic crowd but many would be fleeing in any event..even if the event is something as potentially memorable as the Games.

They have to go, you see. They know deep within their rain-dampened marrow that Vancouver is often no place to hang your hat in February. If it doesn’t get much colder soon, The World will see it too.

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One Response to “Is there room in your canoe?”

  1. Thanks for your amusing blog. It was indeed very funny and so true! We are happy that we will not be in Vancouver during the Olympics.

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