The rain held off for a few hours on Friday afternoon to allow the torch relay to make its way through Yaletown in relatively dryness and comfort. The narrow streets of this former warehouse district were packed with celebrants, many flying the red maple leaves of Canada. We followed the flame as it wound its way down Hamilton Street, along Robson, past the colosseum of the Library (where the “Words Don’t Fit the Picture”), past the downtown Post Office, to the Four Nations pavillion at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre plaza. Here the crowd waited breathlessly while the torch-bearer attempted to light a cauldron which stubbornly refused to be lit. Finally, someone must have peered underneath, turned the propane on, and voila! Bob and Doug McKenzie must have been the technicians assigned to that one …
Making our way back through Yaletown again, we stopped and caught the only snow we’re likely to see during these games in front of a bar on Mainland Street pumping out dance tunes.
Ty guesses that Bob and Doug were again assigned to the Opening Ceremonies technical crew last night, when, once again, there was a screw up with lighting the cauldron. We were watching the show live on the CTV internet feed, since we don’t have a TV, and, last we saw, the four final torch bearers were standing around in BC Place waiting, torches in hand … then the screen all of a sudden went blank without warning. No lighting, nada … we figured that the time the network had allotted for the Opening Ceremonies was up and someone decided to pull the plug on it, even though the big event – the cauldron-lighting – hadn’t happened. Apparently, as we read in the paper this morning, one of the four limbs of the gigantic sculptural cauldron’s icicles refused to rise up out of the floor – the hydraulics were stuck. So, rather than having the four – Catriona Lemay Doan, Nancy Greene, Steve Nash and Wayne Gretzky – light it, the semi-cauldron was lit by three, giving Vancouver a gigantic Olympic Torch Tripod. Way to go, Bob and Doug – hope those beers were cold.
See more photos here.