Wednesday, August 13, 2008

That Is So Sochi!

As noted in previous Sunday Gymnastics post, that day was on track to become "best day ever" by noon. The later hours of the day proved to be fantastic!

On the way back to the B.C. Canada Pavilion from the Olympic Green, the skies opened up on Beijing. Big, fat rain! This was a welcome relief from the heat. But the torrential downpour filled the metro station by the pavilion with three inches of standing water in the entryway, where a nice local lady sold me an umbrella that survived for about an hour (made in Taiwan?).

My Edelman colleagues Lorraine and Andrew stopped by for a visit to the pavilion just before many of our Canada colleagues and I embarked for a drenched evening at The Russia House, a spectacular party pavilion that spans several blocks of lakeside property and hutongs.

Sunday night's Russia House party theme was a Vancouver 2010/Sochi 2014 celebration, toasting the 2010 Winter Games and the recently confirmed 2014 Winter Olympic site, Sochi, Russia, which is on the banks of the Black Sea (coincidence they rented a lakeside space here, perhaps).

Oh, man! What an amazing event!

At every turn there was a VIVIP! Jean Claude Killy (yes, that Jean Claude Killy), Vitaly Smirnov and other IOC Members to Japan, Korea and many other nations all spotted on site. Also, Dr. Liston Bochette, former Atlanta Olympic international relations head Charlie Battle (a fellow Atlantan) and about every Russian news organization and several of Russia's gold medal athletes were a buzz. Russian beer and watermelon-infused vodka mojitos contributed to the good times had by all.

The event provided a great introduction to Sochi and what will certainly be an outstanding future Olympiad. Gonna have to ease up on the mojitos the next time we visit Russia House.


Carol M said...

As you might expect, the US media ave been obsessing over Michael Phelps (with good reason, of course). What is the general view of his accomplishment over there?

Chef Mark wants to know more about the food.

P.S. If Vancouver is selling any kids stuff (like books) I'll take one of those too! :)

Nicholas Wolaver said...

Phelps ... what can I say/write? Unlimited superlatives over here. Several P.R. events across the city were scooped by a VISA presser at which Phelps did a post-competition Q&A. Likely the chatter will only continue.

Vancouver IS selling good kid stuff. In fact, Beijing kid stuff is really tough to find. Found a kids book (though not BOCOG-specific) for FREE, so budget is wide open still. More culinary adventure updates to come.

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