TODAY   |  February 02, 2014

Sochi scrambles to get ready as athletes arrive

With just days to go and $50 billion spent, some parts of Sochi still don’t look quite prepared for the Olympic Games. NBC’s Keir Simmons reports.

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>>> the olympic winter games in sochi , russia, are just four games away, and the billions of dollars have been spent for the country to host the world. organizers are still scrambling to get everything ready in time. keir simmons is live in sochi this morning with more for us. keir, good morning.

>> reporter: erica, good morning. from here we can hear the music as rehearsals get under way for the openings of the games. as you walk around in places, it looks as though construction work is under way. the olympic committee says up in the mountains only six of the nine media hotels up there are fully operational.

>> reporter: prayers this morning for a safe and successful olympics. the organizers need all the help they can get. with just days to go and $50 billion spent, parts of sochi don't quite look prepared for prime time . some hotels are just this weekend loading in furniture. but the mountains are ready, and members of the american team can't wait to get going.

>> it's awesome. there's a lot of snow. we rode powder this morning and it was amazing.

>> i would put the mountains here up against anywhere in the world.

>> reporter: down off the mountain team usa short track speed skater j.r. was testing the ice.

>> feeling good, really good about this, loving the atmosphere and the energy.

>> reporter: the countdown is really under way now. hundreds of volunteers arriving. but one fan has just left sochi , a football fan.

>> go seahawks!

>> reporter: she was in sochi for a day because of her job as a flight attendant but was desperate to get back home.

>> should catch the second quarter -- might miss the first, but my husband is going to record it.

>> reporter: still plenty of excitement here as well as the worries. the question, though, is, as thousands of more people arrive will they have somewhere to stay in the president of the ioc is reassuring people saying there are troubles as always before the olympics.

>> a couple more days to get it worked out. keir, thanks.