I’ll spare you too much description of the international media centre, here on the exhibition grounds in Toronto. Looks a bit like an airplane hanger, only with a wine bar, an impressionistic model of Toronto’s financial district and several large monitors strung up from the ceiling with an endless loop of footage from scenic Huntsville. The World Cup is playing on other monitors and every so often a roar or groan of some kind can be heard. Remember, the goal of any “media centre” at a large event such as this should be to discourage leaving and thus experiencing anything outside the controlled environment or, worse, practicing any kind of journalism. On that count, this seems a fine media centre. Indeed, I just passed a half hour lounging in a Muskoka chair and barely noticed my own sloth.
It is of course required to make some comment on the fake lake (or, apparently, have your picture taken in front of it), so here goes. As artificial water features go, it seems nice enough. Though it does demonstrate, once again, that one should always downgrade any artist rendering by about 10% to arrive at a more accurate idea of the construct in question.
Anyway. The real business starts tomorrow, several hundred kilometres away in apparently scenic Huntsville. Official buses will be provided for those who wish to leave the cozy confines here for the cozy confines there.