Monday, September 10, 2007

fastest growing middleware

today i've decided to expand my scope. not only am i going to tell you a minimal bit of information about the continent ASIA, we are also going to delve right into the most fascinating (according to yours truly) country on that continent, mongolia.

first of all, how is everyone today?

macchio: i didn't want to bring speaker home with me today b/c that would mean he would have to sit in my car for the six hours that i'm at the airport which is, like, cruel and unusual punishment to cats and i'm pretty sure could result in a jail sentence for me even if i DID crack the windows.

tara: i miss you! i won't be home until 9:30 and i want to do something fun like...boggle?

everyone else: what up?? word!!

ahem. here we go:

there are lots of boundary disputes concerning asia/europe/africa, but generally speaking most scholars agree that asia is the most populated and largest continent in the world. over 60% of the human population lives there! that's over 4 billion people, which i can't even fathom!

i know i know. i covered ASIA really quickly but that's b/c i have so much interest in mongolia and i wanted to get to it as quickly as possible.

two adjectives to describe mongolia: barren and arrid. it's considered the least densely populated country in the world (which is funny b/c it's on a continent that is the MOST densely populated one so, like, they contradict each other). and it's full of deserts, including the Gobi, which takes up the entire southern portion of the country.

the gobi:

i bet you'll impress someone by knowing that mongolia is the second largest landlocked country in the world (kazakhstan is first) and its capital and largest city is Ulan Bator. over 1/3 of the population lives there. another 38% of the population is nomadic and the remaining one-third must live in the surburbs, if i read between the lines correctly.

here are two things i bet you already knew:

genghis khan was from mongolia AND many mongolians live in yurts.

genghis khan:

a yurt:

mr. khan was REALLY GOOD at fighting. he created the mongol empire which to this day remains the largest land empire in world history. of course, like all good things it came to an end. for awhile china controlled mongolia but it was eventually declared independent in 1911 and tied itself quickly to the soviet union (because they were big and bad ass and the chinese didn't take chances). when communism fell, it adopted a multi-party political system.

now, on to my favourite topic:

mongolia is home to the przewalski horse (aka the mongolian wild horse and/or takhi).

this is the OLDEST HORSE BREED in the world and the closest living wild horse to the domesticated horse we know today (of which, i now own *three*). these przewalkski horses have *never* been tamed. their total world population is only 1500 (a little over 200 of them run wild in mongolia; the rest are in zoos and other breeding reserve programs). the ONLY ones that live in the US are located in cumberland, ohio and guess who is going to make a road trip there within the next year? anyone want to join me?

til tomorrow,