Galway City and the merchants who reside herein are all twitterpated about the Volvo Ocean Race. It hits town on June 30th for a week of racing and the big finale of the whole shebang. The activities they have planned are absolutely staggering. There’s an expectation of over 150,000 people in our fair city; road closures seem likely to snarl things up quite well for the week. They’re building a new bridge from the Spanish Arch to Claddagh Quay to facilitate all the visitors. There are clean-up efforts all over the city center and new bike racks and beautification efforts like huge new flower planters all over the place. Occupy Galway has plans to surprise everyone with a good, old-fashioned rousing protest on the final race day. Sweden’s Prince Carl Philip is confirmed to be visiting at the finale of the race. (There had been a rumor floated about Prince William attending, but alas, t’was not true.) The weather prediction is for rain and mild temps in the 60s F (mid-teens C) plus probably some wind – typical Galway weather. There’s shopping and food and fairs and festival stuff and… well it’s just going to be – as the Irish put it so well – GRAND.
Two of our daughters are going to be here the last few days of the race. I’m kind of reluctant to expose them to the city in the condition it’s going to be in at that point because they are not going to get the real flavor of Galway. However, things may be getting back to normal before they have to leave so perhaps they will at least get to see Salthill and the Prom in their natural state. On the other hand, there are going to be tons of people from all over the world and exposure to them could be quite the enlightening experience!