Sunday, April 19, 2009

Still travelin' (but first, a recap)

I've learned so much this past week! The highlights of things learned include:
-Dari is what Afghans call their language, not Persian or Farsi, even though it's basically the same.

-Argentina claims part of Antarctica, which is disputed by Chile and the UK, both of which also claim parts of the continent. In order to enforce their claim, Argentina flew a seven-month pregnant woman onto their Antarctic base so that they could claim that the baby was a native-born Argentinian, and thus that Antarctica is part of Argentina.

-Andorra and Angola's mottos are remarkably similar ("strength united is stronger" and "virtue is stronger when united," respectively).

-Albania, under Enver Hoxha, was the world's first officially atheist state.

-The banjo originated from Angola; they call it "mbanza" in Kimbundu.

-Jamaica Kincaid was born in St. John's, Antigua. Also, Silvio Berlusconi has a home there.

-Nathaniel Davis, Assistant Secretary of State under President Ford, resigned when his warning that supporting the Angolan insurgency would lead to an escalation in the conflict was ingored. He later became a professor at Harvey Mudd College.

-Argentina's population consists of only 10% mestizo or Amerindian. In contrast, Paraguay's is 95%.

-Adolf Eichmann's last words were, "...long live Argentina."

-About two thirds of Albanians fell victim to a government-sponsored ponzi scheme in 1997. Riots ensued.
I decided I need a sabbath. I didn't realize how exhausting virtual travel could be. This weekend I'm going to Brussels (in reality), so I'll have to take a hiatus then too.

I'm excited to finish off the A-list this week. I already have great fondness for all of the following countries and I can't wait to learn more about them. Especially about Azerbaijan, which for now I only associate with Eddie Izzard. Here is the schedule:

Tuesday, April 21: Armenia
Wednesday, April 22: Australia
Thursday, April 23: Austria
Friday, April 24: Azerbaijan

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