Chiberia vs. Sochi
This polar vortex in Chicago has me desperately looking for warmer vacation locations. After researching the 2014 Winter Olympics I was almost convinced that Russia had the best seat of the house to watch the games for two reasons;
It’s warmer than Chiberia
Sochi is considered the most popular resort area in Russia. With colder temperatures averaging at 50 degrees in the day and 37 degrees at night, Sochi will be the warmest city on record to host the Winter Olympics. According to Olympic.org, to ensure smooth running of the games, the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee has implemented a “guaranteed snow” plan which includes 710,000 cubic meters of stored snow.
It’s a green city
According to the Sochi Olympics website, the air quality in Sochi is considered among the best in the world due to the city’s nearly 500,000 acres of forests. With the use of environmentally friendly building materials and renewable energy sources for all of the new venues, hotels, and transportation, the city plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and make the events climate-neutral.
Just as I was about to pull out my passport, I read the Washington Post’s piece on how journalists are live-tweeting the horrors and I realized that Russia may not be the location for the luxurious vacation that I was looking for.
No place for strays
Since Sochi has thousands of strays roaming the streets, officials contracted a pest control company to poison them to fix the “problem”.
BYOW (Bring Your Own Water)
This is what happened when Chicago Tribune reporter Stacy St. Clair tried to get water out of her hotel’s faucet. In the hotel’s defense, she did receive warning from the front desk not to use the faucet as it contains something “dangerous”.
Little Hotel of Horrors
Both Olympians and reporters found themselves in hotels that make the Motel 6 look like a luxury home. Although CNN’s Harry Reekie (pictured in the photo below) booked his and other media rooms five months ago, he described the whole scene to be in “shambles” upon arrival.
While I am still interested in seeing where the extra $39 billion went that caused the 2014 Winter Olympics to go over budget in person, it may be a better idea to pick another place to spend my vacation. Thank you to the journalists at Sochi for letting me know that when watching the 2014 Winter Olympics, there is no place like home.