After last Sunday's seven-plus hour stretch in the rain, TM and I were prepared, physically and mentally, for a similar event - a Mardi Gras parade, or a military review, or a protest march, or even an invasion. Luckily, while wandering around central Glasgow today in search of essential supplies (i.e. lipstick, new travel toothbrush holders, and Wagamama salads), we realized the Olympic torch was coming to town tonight.
Conveniently, the route included Woodlands Road, which is just down the hill from our place. So off we trundled around 5:30 to lurk on the street and admire all the Glasgow police zooming around on their BMW motorbikes. We had about 40 minutes to wait, so there was plenty of time to scrutinize the Balti Club take-away party menu, posted in its window: next time we want to order four litres of fried rice,a 30-pack of vegetable pakora, or a party selection of pizza slices (32 slices for £25, three toppings max), we know where to come.
There were quite a few people out in the street, including a little girl near us clutching a small home-made Union Jack flag - preferable to the plastic Samsung flags thrown from the convoy of (over-sized) sponsor trucks. Lots of people were standing on the pedestrian overpass at the end of Woodlands Road, helicopter and seagulls hovering overhead, the rain managing to hold.
As well as obnxious sponsor trucks, the torch relay has its own bus, and a number of cyclists in official grey.
And then there was the torch itself - with apologies to the torchbearer, whose name I don't know. (The official web site that lists all the Glasgow torchbearers doesn't have pictures of everyone.)
Earlier today, we were walking home along Sauchiehall Street and passed one of the Indian restaurants on the south side. Outside, one of Glasgow's other torchbearers was posing for photos with his torch, people he knew, people who were just passing by but wanted to have their picture taken with an Olympic torch, and the guy who'd served us a couple of hours earlier at the Post Office. (He was easy to remember: he was wearing a striped shirt and polka-dot tie.)
Right now there's a big event going on in George Square. Olympic Fever has arrived in Glasgow. Time for a party-pack of pakora.