Latest from Paige Larson



And the sun had returned this morning but the clouds are moving in as the day progresses. It is still quite hot, but I am not complaining! The day is going well, starting with a quick athletics meeting at 7:30. After that I went for an hour swim. It was all in perspective as the girl missing most of one arm swam past me time and again…oh well….she was alot younger than me!!
The latest excitement in the dining hall is that McDonald’s has opened, which is only exciting because they have a coffee bar! The coffee in the dining hall leaves much to be desired, so this is very good news for those of us who love our coffee. They offer all the usual lattes, mochas, cappaccinos, hot and cold. It feels kind of odd though as you order and pick up your drink without having to pay anything! Life here is a little bit decadent at times!
I picked up my clean laundry and also my clothing exchanges. The Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC) provides us with pretty much a full wardrobe for the Games. Part of our “contract” on accepting our position with Team Canada is that we must wear the provided uniform and clothes. There are certain events that they specify what we have to wear – like opening and closing ceremonies, the flag raising, podium and media interviews. And we all know that I will be needing that podium and interview wear!! So, we all order our sizes for the uniforms when we accept our position with Team Canada. Now, for some unknown reason HBC was not able to make the clothes in the sizes that people ordered. For example, I got all men’s clothing except for one piece. I managed to trade all my pants with a girl who needed larger sizes. I had to turn in all my tops to CPC when we arrived and they switch them all around though, and I did manage to get 4 of them changed to women’s (in my size), and the others were all changed to men’s that at least is my size!
Back to my description of the Village…there are a number of “residence centers” throughout the village. There are 3 “super residence centers”, one of which is located across the walk/street from our building. Each center has a reception where you are greeted by smiling Chinese volunteers. There are lounges, pay phones, TV areas with DVDs, meeting rooms, a business center, ice and drinks, games rooms (more popular with the male residents from what I can see!!), laundry, and housekeeping (where you can change your room towels if once every 2 days isn’t enough for you!). Generally, it is a nicer area to use a computer than the Team Canada staff or athletes lounges. They have computers in them, too, but are sparsely decorated and not as comfy. There is wireless outside and in the residence center, but they have it somehow blocked into our building. The Team Canada IT guy is setting it up in various places (the coaches and athlete lounges) and will have it in the medical clinic soon, we hope! Quite a few people have their own laptops, so they really appreciate the wireless. I am not sure what the “super” center has compared to the regular residence center….oh well!
Today we have our flag raising and official welcome into the Village. There is also a Team Canada pep rally when they will be announcing the flag bearer for the opening ceremonies. I will have full details in my next report, so stay tuned!
Hoping to get some photos to you soon! Cheers, Paige

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