Saturday, March 13, 2010

big city buses.

5 a.m. came QUICK this morning. An 8-hour shift following only four hours of sleep=a recipe for disaster. All I’ve got to say is it’s a gooooood thing that the Lord blessed me with the gift of optimism, because I used that baby a TON today!

We left the hostel at 5:30, caught the 5:50 bus (where I made friends with a homeless man who called himself “Papa Smurf” and got sat on by a man who I’m pretty positive had schizophrenia), and arrived at UBC Thunderbird Arena around 6:30. Briefing lasted about 20 minutes, then we were split into our groups and sent on our way! Kerri and I were in the same group again, which was the bomb diggity! And our group had the lovely task of checking access passes into “The Mixed Zone,” which was the area where the media could interview the athletes after their games. It was actually a pretty great job to have, and we even got to watch the games and meet a few athletes—and they were SO nice and appreciative of all the volunteers!

One of the guys that was on the production crew in the media area looked JUST like Kevin O’Donnell, Violet’s boyfriend in the movie Coyote Ugly. I’m talkin’ identical! He was even Australian, which made it ever better! Confession: sometimes I would strike up a conversation just so I could listen to him talk. Teesh, you may want to consider changing your accent before I get back home. Just a thought. : )

Canada and Italy played in the first game, and then Norway and Sweden played right after them. Canada won (surprise, surprise), and Norway was down by one goal. I was rootin’ for Norway while I was there. “Salmon. I want SALMON!! It costs a fortune to ship that stuff in from Norwegia!” Thank you, Fiona, for saying that line and thus making it one of my favorite nations. That’s just another example of how Disney has changed my life.

Melissa Mascaro, you are going to be WAY PROUD of me when you read these next few sentences…I love hockey. And if I were a boy, I would be a hockey player. This is a new-found obsession, and I’m still learning the rules (or lack thereof) and all that good stuff. But, nevertheless, I love it!!!!!! If I had a TV and VCR right now, I would be watching every Mighty Ducks movie ever made. And then I would go around beating people up with all my pent-up adrenaline. SWEET!

We got done with our shift 10 minutes early, picked up a few pins to add to my collection (which is another new hobby of mine), and tried to figure out the bus schedule to get back to the hostel. Trolly 17 was our best bet, so we hopped on and saw more interesting people. One man just yelled the whole time saying, “Good grief guys, come on! TODAY PLEASE!” Like I said…very interesting.

I laid in my bed for about an hour when we got back to the hostel, and then Kerri, Ashley, and I went on a mad-hunt for some food. We were craving McDonald’s (having American fast-food withdrawals), so that’s what we had for dinner. They even had (drum roll please…) SMORES PIES! Did I get one? Ch’yeah! But you know what they didn’t have? Mickey D’s sweet tea. Fact: when I get back to South Carolina, I am going to CHUG a gallon of the sweetest tea I’ve ever tasted.

Once again, walking to and from Granville Street, we saw more interesting people. As bad as it sounds to say this, it’s true: people are on some crazy stuff here in the big city. That’s probably true for every big city, but I’m still getting used to it—and for my first time ever in a city bigger than Greenville, I feel like I’m making pretty decent progress. But as the brilliant Dave Barnes says, “there’s still miles to go!”

We stopped at a little store on the way back to the hostel to do some souvenir shopping. Kerri picked up some little contraption that the bottom twisted. We were really confused and couldn’t figure the thing out, so she asked what it was for. “It’s a grinder,” the owner said. My response was, “Like a pepper grinder?” And he said, “No. Like a weed grinder.” Ladies and gentlemen, those conversations don’t happen with such ease in the US. Two words: culture shock.

Because I have another 7 o’clock shift in the morning AND I lose an hour of sleep (thank you, day light saving’s time), I’m going to bed early tonight. Like 8:30 p.m. early. And I’m stoked about it!

Se parle plus tard. : )

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