Rio de Janeiro

In the days and weeks ahead we'll try to paint a thorough picture of what's going on in Rio. For today, I'll offer my favorite moment of the first week.

It was late. We went to the cafeteria at the media center for dinner. The only food that seemed relatively safe and appetizing to me was the hamburger. While I was ordering one, the volunteers brought out a few bottles of booze and began setting them up.

My work was done, so I asked for a vodka tonic, no ice. I've been told the sneakiest way to get sick in Rio is to drink liquids containing ice, which may not be purified.

The volunteer in charge of the drinks made a flourish of starting his mixology. He insisted on using ice. I kept asking him not to. He held out a can of tonic and said, ``But this is flat.'' I was confused until I realized he meant it was warm.

I said I didn't care. He said, ``Here, I fix.'' He placed two ice cubes at the bottom of the glass, then poured liquid over them. He held the drink up to eye level until the ice had melted.

He handed me the drink and said with great enthusiasm: ``See! No ice!''

How could I argue with that?

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Please check out startribune.com for all of our Olympics coverage. We've produced a lot in the last week and will have even more this weekend as the Games begin.

@Souhanstrib

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