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A Sochi Sojourn

post #1 of 105
Thread Starter 

Well, we leave for Moscow in the morning.  We'll spend three days in Moscow, followed by ten days in Sochi.  I'm not sure if I should be excited or dreading the trip but it ought to be interesting.


A friend got us some rather good credentials which will allow us some excellent access , including a good price at a top hotel.  I read this yesterday, which was quite encouraging:



~~Olympic Park Perfection” 5 of 5 stars


Not many things in the Sochi Olympic Park are worth writing reviews about. The lack of water, electricity, dust, noise, people and general chaos makes a person want to run for cover. Cover is exactly what you will find here at (this hotel). Stepping inside everything drowns away. You are greeted inboth Russian and English languages, there is no smell of dust, no sound of drilling and the receptionist hurry around slightly nervous to try to get you checked in as quickly as possible (if you have ever been to this part of Russia, you would know that normally, you, the customer is actually bothering the recpetionist from here mobile phone and you are generally unwanted) with a smile on their face trying to make sure you have a pleasant experience.


 The steak and vegetables I had might have been the very first good meal I have had in a restuarant in Russia for more than 18 months. When you are tired of the everything in this area, take a weekend vacation (like I did) to the ---------. Its a trip back to civilization and it is well worth it. My great thanks to the management there, as they must have put in a lot of hard work to get their staff up to this level of service. After almost 2 years in Sochi, what I experienced was not the norm, and understandabley hard to achieve to this level.


There is no skiing open to the public, so unlike Salt Lake, I won't be skiing the super G course after the race.  I'll take a lot of pictures and try to walk around the fringes a bit.  I might even get to check in if the ipad finds some wi-fi!

post #2 of 105

Okay, I'm seriously jealous.  I think you'll have an unbelievable time.  


If you run into a pretty young woman named Tatiana Shchekodina while you're there, say "hi" for me.  We got to know her while she lived here in Jackson, but she's from Sochi and will be there during the O's.


Are you going to see the women's slalom?  Here in Jackson, we're hoping that the ONLY person who beats Mikaela Shiffrin in that race is Resi Stiegler. ;)


Have fun and report in if possible.

post #3 of 105

Hope you guys have a great time Doug.  Really jealous.

post #4 of 105
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Bob Peters View Post



Are you going to see the women's slalom?  Here in Jackson, we're hoping that the ONLY person who beats Mikaela Shiffrin in that race is Resi Stiegler. .

I would like nothing better, but they race on the 21st, and we'll be there the 10th -20th. Anyone who went to Red Lodge know Ressi's dad to be a great, but tough coach and I will be pulling for her.  I will be around for the GS, and Shiffrin could do it there.


I'm not sure if I can catch Ted in the GS on the same day the Canadian men defend the World champion sprint relay XC, but I'll try.


We'll go up to the mountains each day and then watch an evening hockey game or some skate event each night.  Even without all the curling and ice dancing there is a lot to see....

Edited by newfydog - 2/5/14 at 8:58pm
post #5 of 105
Enjoy, it will be fantastic. Try some Georgian food while you are there. It's spectacularly tasty if done right.
Edited by alexzn - 2/6/14 at 8:02am
post #6 of 105
Originally Posted by newfydog View Post

I might even get to check in if the ipad finds some wi-fi!


Maybe you should hope you don't find Wifi.



post #7 of 105

Thanks for sharing.  I'm eager to hear more about your trip. 

post #8 of 105


post #9 of 105
Can't wait to see the updates!
post #10 of 105
Wow. A trip of a life time. Savor every moment, tovarich.
post #11 of 105

Enjoy, Doug! Should be a lot of fun!


It's sad that they won't allow the public to ski at Rosa Khutor, but I can understand the security issues. That they allowed the public to free ski next to the Snowbasin courses in 2002 is amazing, looking back at the situation at the time. I would always greet the public who skied up to my section of the course with a friendly "hello" and a wave. The kids, especially, loved it that an Olympic "official" (really just a volunteer) was noticing their presence. :)


BTW, the "insta-hack" story was debunked fairly soundly after it was aired (see: http://blog.erratasec.com/2014/02/that-nbc-story-100-fraudulent.html). Still, it's best to be careful when accessing any Internet services while abroad. Set strong passwords for everything, limit your access to sites that have a lot of private information, and be ready to change your passwords again after you get home. Make sure your computer (if you bring one) has up-to-date security software on it - and that said software is running at all times.

post #12 of 105
Thread Starter 
Moscow has been great, now for a long expensive and obscenely early taxi ride to the airport.

If anyone ever visits Moscow the .Mercure Arbat is a wonderful hotel.

I'm told these should be some of the best ever games. I learned in a magazine that the Lake placid olympics were the worst ever for organization and the SLC games the worst ever for scandal. No mention of the Lake Placid hockey or SLC Russian drug positives. The athletes housed in a prison was the major event at Lake Placid.

The snowflake- Olympic ring which malfunctioned at the opening ceremony had two versions on TV here. In one it opened properly with footage from a rehearsal, and on the replay that portion did not exist. Too bad they can't laugh about it and bring out a repairman for the closing ceremonies like they did in Canada.
post #13 of 105

Have a fun flight.  Yes they want alot for taxi rides. cost me about 450 US to go to Gus. Hope you got to see red square and the changing of the gaurds (is really cool). Very intresting country , still trying to figgure how they got a man in space without a catapult.

Travel safe


post #14 of 105
Thread Starter 
Beautiful area here. Not many people around though.

Watched Canada beat Germany in curling and the US women go up 5-0 on the Swiss hockey team in one period., just while waiting for the room to be ready. Our hotel is first class, but some things were just cleaned up while still a bit unfinished.

I think security will do for this area......airport type scrutiny getting in and big grey navy vessels can be seen on the water.
post #15 of 105

Wow, great you're there!

post #16 of 105

Pics or it didn't happen. 




Seriously envious.

post #17 of 105



Have a great trip. Sounds like you're doing it right. Enjoy! Thanks for the updates. 

post #18 of 105
Thread Starter 

I;m shooting lots of photos with a DSLR.  Here's what is on the phone.....good reception at the airport and a dog which survived the purge.



The close up of the Russian curling team uniforms will have to wait.




post #19 of 105
Thread Starter 

Hot. Cool . yours.

post #20 of 105
post #21 of 105
Thread Starter 

A car a bus another car a gondola and finally a van got us to the xc sprints

We could look across at the alpine runs which are serious and spectacular

Might have to come back here to ski if it ever gets affordable

These mountains are nothing, but the pic was available......there is lots of room for extreme stufff here

post #22 of 105
Thread Starter 
There are more volunteers in Sochi jackets than spectators. They are all super nice, unfortunately none of the know what is going on. We talked to 40 of them trying to find the right bus, but never found it.

We have great access, private lounges and seats at all venues. It is a shame, but so much of these games are focussed on VIPs

Yesterday we got curling info from the head of the Canadian
curling assoc, watched the xc with USST people, met the head of Russian xc and got a chair from the prince of Monaco.

Sorry about the bad iPhone typing
post #23 of 105

What is this VIP status?  Looks like a trip of a lifetime.  And as far as the iPhone typing, I'm doing a few typo corrections...no worries.

post #24 of 105
Thread Starter 
When the Olympics are held in an obscure place not too many people can get there ......opening up some guest credentials way down the pecking order. We have an important friend who invited us. I will with hold the name to protect the innocent.

it is indeed an opportunity of a lifetime We have passes to nearly everything, including private cars to get around in, and vip lounges at every event with food and drinks and a great view of the action.

Without the lounges it would be$25 hamburgers at the hotel.
post #25 of 105
Thread Starter 
went up to the womens Dh and the jumping of Nordic combined

We were glad to see a good run from Lauren Ross. She is from Bend and her Mom is one of our family doctors. I'm no fan of Tina Maze but she held her tuck better than anyone and has had an awful season so it was nice to see her win

The Americans stunk up the jump We watched the women. choke against the Russians in curling and Kikken Randal was not even close in the xc sprint

I was thrilled to see Sophie Caldwell make the finals in the xc sprint. She was simply fearless went t right to the front and hammered. She was tripped in the finals. Her uncle always blew by me in college races but always paused to give me a push and advice.

On to speed skating!
post #26 of 105

We were looking for you in the crowd at the XC sprints but didn't see you.  Those were some fun races.  My daughter was heartbroken when Sophie crashed in the finals.

post #27 of 105
Thread Starter 
Yep that is lift serviced

I guess there is 5700 ft. Of vert when they have the snow

oops photos not loading
post #28 of 105
Thread Starter 

there it is
post #29 of 105
Thread Starter 

the dh the jumps and the newf

Russian Cab is better than their champaign
post #30 of 105

Sounds amazing.

The setup for the Nordic Combined looks incredible with the cross country portion run right at the stadium.


While you were out....


Best in Show at Westminster: Skye a Wire Fox Terrier


Getty Images                                                     http://www.nbcsports.com/national-dog-show/wire-fox-terrier-sky-takes-best-show-2012-national-dog-show-presented-purina

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