It might seem strange for Russia to be concerned about its snow stock considering the country's reputation as a frozen, subarctic tundra. But the country also just so happens to be hosting the upcoming Winter Olympics in one of its sole subtropical destinations, Sochi. So what's this Florida-of-the-North to do? Send in the shamans, naturally.
According to Russian sports site rsport.ru, none other than Olympic organising committee chief Dmitry Chernyshenko took it upon himself to call in a few Altai shamans, Siberian spiritual guides who'll be conducting a special ceremony to ensure that the typically sunny resort somehow brings snow in time for the games.
Of course, should the Shaman's prayer not be heard, there are a few backups on hand. Over 500 artificial snow machines are being supplied with water from two man-made lakes, and organisers have even been stockpiling snow — half a million cubic metres worth — in refrigerated warehouses just in case.
So barring some major disaster, the events should hopefully go off without a hitch. Which is fortunate. because the chances of the shamans' prayers being heard from underneath Sochi's many thriving palm trees seems slim to none. [Rsport.ru via Weather.com]