So finally, after the excitement of not knowing where I’ll be carrying the torch and not knowing how I’m getting there, I’ve received my marching orders.
I’ll be part of a team running from Wawa, towards Thunder Bay, with my leg of the journey starting at the Big Bird Inn on Broadway Avenue, to the RBC in Wawa on January 3rd. Looks like an early start for me that day since I have to be at the Michipicoten Community Centre (on Chris Simon Drive!) for 7am. My mom went and booked the famed Beaver Inn for a couple days just in case the weather is lousy. Probably travel there on the 2nd. I’m not sure what’s cooler – being able to say that I carried the torch down Broadway, or that I’ll be resting my head at the Beaver. Let the jokes begin!
Exciting day yesterday as I received a Purlolator package from VANOC – the organizing committee for the Olympics in Vancouver. Since I had originally been notified that I would receive my torchbearer uniform the morning that I run in Wawa, I was surprised to crack open a box containing exactly that. Well, sort of. I pulled out the uniform and quickly realized it was the wrong size. Talk about a buzz-kill. Then after a bit of digging through the rest of the box, I found a letter that said “Congratulations Colleen!”
Turns out that I received the uni for Colleen from Manitoba who is running on day seventy-something. Shitty. Out of curiosity, I tried on the size small jacket. No go. So I called the toll free number provided in case of problems and found out that there was likely a mistaken switch. The girl on the other end asked if I tried on the jacket since they were made big, because if it fit, I could just keep that one. I had to explain to her that if I were to zip up the jacket and attempt to raise my hand in the air to carry the torch, I’d look like one of those muscle-heads at the bar with a shirt three sized too small to show off his pipes, lifting his arm to hail the bartender while his shirt creeps up to his pierced nipples. In other words – please send me the correct size. Thanks. I didn’t bother trying on the pants since I figured Colleen from Manitoba would appreciate it if I didn’t. I hope she’s just as courteous.
Got a great email passed on to me from a friend of mine, and fellow SPAD grad Eric, who forwarded me a message his sister had passed along to her friends and family before getting to carry the torch in Cavendish on Sunday. Like her brother and I, she’s also been quite involved in sport and currently works for the Canadian Olympic Committee. She’d thanked those who had been a large part of the experience and invited everyone to follow her torch run on the live camera that is featured on the CTV Olympic site (see my sites of interest on the right). This is really cool because now everyone can tune in to the entire relay and see those they know carrying the torch. Or just to tune in to take part in the spirit of it all. So as much as I’d love to have everyone make the trek to Wawa, you can now follow me on the live web cam as I make my reality tv debut. I’ll send out a reminder as I get closer. Jax – you can skip church that Sunday morning to tune in. Only Jax though. I’m pretty sure I’ll be running early enough for the rest of you to make it.
Even though the feed isn’t the greatest, it was still awesome watching the torch relay live on Sunday morning as it made its way through PEI, and getting to see Lisa carry it. I stuck around long enough to see a few passes, finally on to Cassie Campbell hopping on a horse-drawn buggy and bringing it to the Anne of Green Gables house, helping kick off this month’s 135th birthday celebration of Lucy Maud Montgomery. Good on the torch relay organizers for hitting as much Canadiana as they can. Wonder if the Big Nickel is part of Sudbury’s torch fetivities? Gotta be. I’d also vote in favour of the storied Coulson. Hey – the Stanley Cup made it there!!
Pretty impressive relay team accompanying the runners I must say which became part of the focus while following online. Guys and girls running alongside, making sure the torch stays upright and nobody drops it. People on bikes racing back and forth to clear the way. Trucks and vans and more trucks and vans in the torch convoy with police cruisers and lights flashing everywhere. Quite the road show. It’s highly unlikely that any “torch terrorists” or Olympic protesters get a good chance of sabotaging the runners for fear of getting pummeled by Olympic security jumping out of vans like the A-Team. I’m feeling pretty safe that if something does happen, Wawa won’t be the place. And if it is, I’m working on convincing my brother to come along and keep the beard and hairdo, so even if Wawa gets rowdy, I pity the fool who even tries getting in the way.