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An Outsider’s Olympics

Wednesday February 17th, 2010

If you haven’t heard, the Winter Olympics are taking place in Vancouver, BC. Our own Andy DeLisle decided to make the trip from Phoenix to Canada to document “life outside the arenas.” He’s shared a few images of the Olympics from the perspective of how it impacts the town, its local population, and the temporary visitors flooding the streets.

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DeLisle shot the photograph above and below on the opening day of the Olympics. This despite the fact that he was recovering from walking pneumonia when he arrived.

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I asked Andy what it was like being in a city temporarily overrun with thousands of extra enthusiasts. His thoughts:

The city is definitely feeling the effects of being overrun with tourists. Most of the tourists are Canadian. I haven’t found any large groups of foreigners. My guess is they’re all at the Games, not at the free events the city set up. They’ve also put a lot of extra effort into making things run smoothly. Given the amount of people coming and going from the downtown area, it’s incredibly organized.

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Even the handful of protests are only a minor distraction. Some vandalism was involved with the protests on Saturday and within an hour windows were replaced and everything was back to normal. The protestors I’ve talked to all seem to be upset about something different and they’re the same people at every march/protest.

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In the morning they’re marching to raise awareness about the the homeless problem on the downtown east side and in the evening they’re protesting the war in Afghanistan. They seem as much of a tourist attraction as anything else here.

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Andy’s also blogging about the experience, if you’d like to follow his continued exploits. I recommend checking out his website, as well, to see his take on other subject matter such as rodeos, boxing, and Americana in general.

-Neil Binkley

One Response to “An Outsider’s Olympics”

  1. […] often traveling for work, and recently produced a nice series of images from his visits to the Vancouver Olympics. Andy DeLisle (L) and Jess Dudley (R) noshing at Stout's in Times […]

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