the rain is beating down upon the windowpanes of Terminal C as i sit on my bench and look out at travelers being dropped off at the check-in area of US AIRWAYS. a lady in exceptionally high pink patent leather heels just took a serious spill and it was all i could do not to laugh aloud as three police officers ran to her aid. come on, lady. everyone knows heels above a quarter-inch high shouldn't be worn when it's raining. she fell for the attention; i'm sure of it.
but enough about her. let's move on to world news....
today, i'm interested in the country GEORGIA. i bet its name has fooled many a person seeking out the state. i bet 90% of americans don't even *know* it's a country.
here's what i dig about it:
-it's small and its motto is "strength is in unity" which is probably because it realised a long time ago that the only way it would remain independent is if it made friends with the big boys. namely, the UN (which it's a member of). georgia is also trying hard to get into NATO and the European Union but those aspirations are several years away.
-georgia is one of only a handful of transcontinental countries, which means that it is sandwiched between eastern europe and western asia. it's like a portal between the past and the present and i've been thinking about how many people travel through it just in the hopes of walking out the opposite end into another world from a different era.
-'georgia' means 'farming' in greek and agriculture is still one of its biggest economic sectors.
are you a spelunker? if so, go to georgia (once you're really good at it). it boasts the DEEPEST CAVE in the world which is called voronya cave and with each new expedition it seems another section of it is found which makes it even deeper than originally believed. right now, you can descend over 6,800 feet! like, whoa!
did you know that an agency called Transparency International (i think the name is intentionally vague) compiles a Corruption Perceptions Index every couple of years? georgia's ranking (90th out of 163) came up while i was researching it. the agency defines their work as assessing the "degree to which corruption is perceived to exist among public officials and politicians." go georgia! way to be near the middle of the pack! the closer to 1, the least corrupt. it's no surprise that iceland is #1 and that the US didn't even place in the top 15. stay away from haiti. it's dead last.
but back to georgia....CHRIS THIS IS FOR YOU....the country is considered to have the largest undeveloped hydropower potential in the world (over 50,000 MW)...
the georgian government has even taken a serious pledge to expand hydropower generation over the course of the next 5 years. their plan includes replacing thermal electricity tenfold and exporting surplus power to neighbouring countries, in particular turkey which is, like, begging for it and willing to pay big bucks to import it.
and, finally (chris), most georgians consider themselves to be orthodox christians, JUST LIKE YOU.