I’ve just returned from my lunchtime meander and can say that Wellington right now is, indeed, a mad, marvelous carnival.
The weather is absolutely perfect – near 70 degrees, perfectly sunny, with a light northerly to keep the sun from getting too intense. My primary goal this midday – apart from admiring the crowds lined up along the parade route – was some vitamin E in gel caps for the worst of our sunburned bits. I managed to scoot across Willis Street to the pharmacy just ahead of the truck full of workers setting out the barricades. It’s still pretty clear up at this end of the route, apart from the generally elevated numbers of people, but down at Courtenay Place it’s an absolute zoo. They’ve got the grandstands up and the carpet out, and the barricades are lined with fans five-deep. The street in front of our old apartment is lined with media trucks, and all the little parklets and courtyards are full of crowds and buskers.
Someone somewhere is making a killing on plastic elf-ears – even some of the security teams in their yellow safety vests are wearing them. There are plenty of “WE (heart) YOU ORLANDO!” banners, interspersed occasionally with similar sentiments for the other actors/characters. Most disturbing, perhaps, were the “Gollum 4EVAH” banners, including such gems as “Marry Me Gollum” painted in Dwarven runes (why, exactly ?), and “Smeagol I’m Pregnant”. (brrr)
Ran into Emily again, dutifully maintaining her position at the barricade. My coworkers are planning to head out to Willis to watch the parade, so there may be another report later.