SOCHI - I tagged along with Ball State reporter Jeremy Ervin and photographer Taylor Irby in pursuit of an interesting story about all the Olympic paraphernalia being sold this week. We met four Americans from the Bay Area who arrived via Istanbul today, as well as a Russian-born young woman now living in Sacramento who is here with three of her buddies from the states. It was fun to have conversations without needing translators.
I was feeling fairly full of myself after successfully navigating the trip to Sochi without the aid of one of our trusty translators. We took the train into Sochi, found the shopping mall we needed to visit and came away with the material needed to supplement Ervin's earlier reporting work. I promised the students that I would make sure they would not be killed or lost, so my work here is done.
The most popular, Olympics-branded souvenirs and clothing seem to be stuffed animals, gloves, nesting dolls and jerseys of all sorts. Don't get me started on the tiny pins that are almost like currency around here. Collectors have made the art of pin trading a common and popular mini-sport.