The World Equestrian Games are only 54 days away, so the hype for them is now starting to build. Last week on the radio, I learned that a new building was completed at Bluegrass Airport, to handle more non-airline traffic. Today I learned that a new runway was built for the same purpose. I also learned from today’s newspaper that so far, the federal, state and local governments have spent $107 million to get ready for the games, compared with an estimated cost of $70 million if it had been left to private industry. Whether or not the games are a success, I think it’s safe to say that Lexington and its airport will not be the same again.
We’re also getting a reminder of the games from the horse statues. I’m used to seeing statues of animals in cities, painted in color combinations not found in nature. Orlando had geckos back in the 1990s; Lakeland, FL had swans; last year I learned that Oklahoma City has buffalo. Well, Lexington has horses. No surprise there, because this city calls itself the “Horse Capital of the World,” and I remember discovering a few of those painted sculptures on trips downtown, shortly after moving here in 2006.
Today was my first day off from work in a whole week, and I just got paid last Friday, so Leive and I spent much of the day grocery shopping. One of the shopping trips was to Yu-Yu, the big Asian store near the University of Kentucky. On the way we counted nine of those horse statues, and I only recall seeing one of them before! They’ve been popping up all over town while we weren’t looking; for example, we saw a new green and brown horse where Richmond Road goes past Henry Clay’s house. Over on Facebook, one of our pastor’s daughters recently posted several pictures of the statues that she took. Like this one, which I believe is outside the Lexington Convention Center.
And this one has an ocean theme, which I’m sure Leive will like.
No doubt about it, the next few months will be interesting ones for us. No late summer doldrums for 2010!