Friday, February 23, 2007

Mongolia: A Barren and Strange Country

Mongolia: A Barren and Strange Country

Mongolia is literally a desert. The entire country is formed by the Gobi Desert, save a few mountains in the north. It is not near the sea so people cannot fish, and the land is unfertile so they cannot plant crops except in some places near the mountains.

So, instead of being farmers, most of the people of Mongolia are herders. They herd camels and they keep chickens. These people are constantly moving to find some good pastures. This makes Mongolia the least densely populated country in the world.

Mongolia is named after the Mongols, which was an army in the Ancient world that roamed across central Asia and Europe. At one point, the Mongols controlled an empire that stretched from Korea too Italy. No army has ever had so much land in its power ever since. The leader of this army was a man named Genghis Khan. When he died, his son Kublai Khan took over his kingdom.

Another interesting thing about Mongolia is that it is rich in dinosaur bones. Paleontologists from all over the world go there to find some new prehistoric creature. When the dinosaurs became extinct, the world was a little different. 65 million years ago Mongolia had a similar climate so the cold, dry environment preserved the bones very well.

Mongolia is a very primitive country. The people still live in yurts, which was the home of the Mongols, sort of like an Asian teepee. They are still nomads like their Mongol ancestors, but they are not warlike anymore. It is incredible how the lives of so many people can change so little through the centuries.

Friday, February 16, 2007


Malaysian Money

Malaysia is a very affluent nation and its main sources of income are petroleum, electronic goods and wood products. Before I elaborate any further on this most intriguing subject, I would like to make clear a few important points about this country. For instance, where is Malaysia? Malaysia is a country in Southeast Asia and it borders Indonesia, Thailand and small country called Brunei. Malaysia gained its independence from the United Kingdom on August 31, 1957.

Malaysia is a member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, or OPEC. Many different countries from all around the world export oil, and OPEC ensures the regularity of the price, if the country is a member. This rule applies to Malaysia, since it is a well known member of OPEC. Two countries, who are not members and export oil, are Russia and Mexico.

Malaysia also exports electronic goods. A lot of our every-day devices, like phones and computers here in America, are made and manufactured in Malaysia. About 56% of all exports from Malaysia have to do with electronics. These, not only include computers and phones, but also include television sets, radio receivers, photography equipment, and electro-medical equipment, like X-rays, CAT scan projectors, etc.

Malaysians are experts in building techniques; hence the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia. The Petronas Towers, opened in 1996, are the tallest office buildings in the world at 1,483 feet, surpassing the Sears Tower in Chicago. The man who designed the Petronas Towers was an Argentine-American named Cesar Pelli.

Another main source in Malaysia’s wealth is selling wood products. Fancy furniture, wood polishes, wood coatings and even wood floorings are exported every year. In many different woods too, such as teak, mahogany and soca, that all grow abundantly in the forests of Malaysia. The forests of Malaysia are being cut down to meet this demand, so their government is taking measures to preserve them. To state my point as clearly as possible, Malaysia is a very wealthy country indeed.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Map of Rio

Hello again. This a cartoon map of Rio, and to my surprise, it was amazingly accurate. It shows the Sugarloaf Mountain, the rock by the bay, and the beach where I went to.