Welcome to the Winter Olympics

Jim Caple

I dined outside under a palm tree this afternoon, enjoying spoonfuls of jambalaya while taking in the view of the Black Sea and the cruise ships in port. I did not do this in Lillehammer at the 1994 Olympics.

Of course, Sochi’s subtropical climate is a tad warmer than Lillehammer and also warmer than Vancouver was four years ago. Temperatures were in the low 50s Wednesday, which was warm enough for several young women to walk around in shorts, such as this woman posing with the Olympic mascots.

Stuffed toy versions of those Olympic mascots, by the way, are available in virtually every store along the Sochi waterfront and throughout its downtown. If you want one, wait until after the Olympics, then place your bid on eBay because the huge supply of these animals is certain to be heavily discounted.