Russia has reportedly spent $51 billion to prepare Sochi for the Olympics, making it the most expensive games ever held. However, with very little infrastructure in place and disruptive geography, it appears the undertaking was still a bit too much to handle in a short period of time.
As members of the North American media arrived in Sochi to cover the Olympics, they quickly realized some…irregularities. Here are five reasons to be glad you are not in Sochi.
You Can’t Flush Toilet Paper Down the Toilet
Greg Wyshynski, editor of the Yahoo! Sports blog “Puck Daddy,” revealed on Tuesday the thing that has surprised him the most in Sochi.
People have asked me what surprised me the most here in Sochi. It's this. Without question … it's … THIS. pic.twitter.com/1jj05FNdCP
— Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) February 4, 2014
The Water Might Look Like This
Chicago Tribune reporter Stacy St. Clair posted a now-viral photo on Twitter showing the water at her hotel after it had been “restored.”
— Stacy St. Clair (@StacyStClair) February 4, 2014
When You Try to Buy Bottled Water, You May Only Be Able to Find Giant Bottles of Gin
Shaun Walker, the Guardian’s Moscow correspondent, almost ended up with a huge plastic bottle of gin instead of water. Then she got “accosted by a 3-legged dog.”
— Shaun Walker (@shaunwalker7) February 4, 2014
You Might Fall Into a Man Hole
Even on sidewalks, some of the man holes are apparently uncovered. Don’t text and walk in Sochi.
— Jo-Ann Barnas (@JoAnnBarnas) February 1, 2014
The Hotels Are Just Subpar
Canada.com’s Bruce Arthur revealed that nearly every hotel room is missing something: “lightbulbs, TVs, lamps, chairs, curtains, wifi, heat, hot water.”
And good luck getting a shower curtain in Sochi.
“Shower curtains are a valuable piece of the future black market here. (One American photographer was simply told, ‘You will not get a shower curtain,’” Arthur writes.
In the Ekaterininsky Kvartal hotel, the elevator is broken and the stairway is unlit, with stairs of varying and unpredictable heights.
Outside the Chistya Prudy, there is a bag of concrete in a palm tree, leaking grey down the trunk. Inside, some of the electrical outlets are just plates screwed into drywall.
Sports Illustrated’s Brian Cazeneuve had to clamber through a window to get out of his hotel on Tuesday morning, since the doors were all unexpectedly locked. Chris Stevenson of the Ottawa Sun was without electricity for the first day.