The winter Olympics at Sochi, Russia, began with a glitch. The fifth ring, in the shape of a giant snowflake, took its time in unfurling. Perhaps it was a portent of the weather troubles to come ahead.
The event has for its motto: “Hot. Cool. Yours.” As if only to live up to it, the temperatures in this Black Sea town climbed to the mid-60s, before taking a steep nosedive, dumping so much snow and slush that it left skiers slipping and sliding on it.
In past venues, the mercury has hovered in the range between minus two and minus 13 Fahrenheit.