Staying in Sochi is a "hilarious adventure," weary media types have revealed, as they descended on Russia for the Sochi Winter Olympics.
The Games begin Thursday, but scanning Twitter it is debatable whether or not Sochi is actually prepared to host the 2014 Olympics.
Pleas for doorhandles and bargains being made with lightbulbs indicate some journalists have been transported to post-apocalyptic, Mad Max-style accommodation.
As the Washington Post wryly notes:
The disarray seems to contradict repeated promises from both Russian and Olympic officials that Sochi is ready for the games, despite terrorist threats, unfinished construction and concerns over human rights abuses in the country.
Here's our pick of some of the most
appalling testing conditions the press is facing:
My hotel has no water. If restored, the front desk says, "do not use on your face because it contains something very dangerous." #Sochi2014— Stacy St. Clair (@StacyStClair) February 4, 2014
Also on the bright side: I just washed my face with Evian, like I'm a Kardashian or something.— Stacy St. Clair (@StacyStClair) February 4, 2014
— Stacy St. Clair (@StacyStClair) February 4, 2014ADVERTISEMENT
@richard_conway The hotels may be open but the rooms are not ready in our one. Still. From what I hear the problem is widespread.— Harry Reekie (@HarryCNN) February 4, 2014
@DChernyshenko Our media hotel is not ready Dmitry....11 rooms booked five months ago, only one ready. Please help.— Harry Reekie (@HarryCNN) February 4, 2014
Still waiting for "preparations" on hotel room to finish. Hoping they're origami-folding toilet roll, rather than, say, putting the roof on.— Shaun Walker (@shaunwalker7) February 4, 2014
Ok, so my hotel doesn't have a lobby yet.— Mark MacKinnon (@markmackinnon) February 4, 2014
What's for breakfast, Sochi? Tinned peas and marmalade? Mmmmm pic.twitter.com/JLIls7jQne— Shaun Walker (@shaunwalker7) February 5, 2014
THIS IS AN EMERGENCY SITUATION, LEAVE THE BUILDING IMMEDIATELY. 6am Sochi wake up. Brief moment of terror as locked fire door.— Shaun Walker (@shaunwalker7) February 5, 2014
Logging on at Sochi media centre you have to enter your accreditation number for wifi - so they'll know which journos accessing what pages.— Shaun Walker (@shaunwalker7) February 4, 2014
No power no problem pic.twitter.com/dX6GDpSaln— David Iacolucci (@DavidIacolucci) February 5, 2014
@ArponBasu Bring shower curtains, they're like gold over there. No, seriously, your colleagues need stuff.— Wayne Chow (@wayne_chow) February 5, 2014
Miss you, hot water in my hotel. You were great.— Bruce Arthur (@bruce_arthur) February 4, 2014
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
Canadian sports columnist Bruce Arthur wrote, "Almost every room is missing something: lightbulbs, TVs, lamps, chairs, curtains, wifi, heat, hot water. 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."