I love geography. I do. I love it so very much. I love maps, i love learning about different countries and I especially love visiting them. When i descend in an airplane, toward a coastal land mass and I have a window seat on a clear day, I look down and try to find my bearings. I try to memorize the contours of the edge of land that I see in hopes to later rush to a map and see if that's what I was seeing from the sky. Because that would be the COOLEST.
It is very important to me to know a) the existence of a country I may hear about and b) its general location on the earth. Otherwise I feel like a flaming idiot and that I should probably go hang out with this girl.
This has helped me on many occasions, particularly since living in New York. One time I sat next to a man in church who told me he was from Togo. At first I thought he said Tonga but it's not my fault, he had a strong accent. Although, he didn't really look like he was from Tonga so i guess i'm kind of a moron for that. But anyway, when I realized what he said I thought a second and then said, "oh! West Africa.. next to Benin, right?" And he said 'yes' and seemed very pleased and I gave myself a mental high five.
Another time is when I taught an ESL class that had 50-60 people from 15-20 different countries. Americans have reputations for a lot of things and being uber-aware of the rest of the world is not one of them. Luckily these people had me as their teacher because i knew the locations and other details of all the countries because I am awesome.
This is also helpful when you take a taxi and chit chat with the cab driver. When he tells you where he's from and you have something to say about it, your ride is decidedly more pleasant.
If I had endless amounts of money, do you know what I would do? I would travel, travel and travel. And you know what else? Travel. And i'd probably want to live in different countries. Well, i want to do that now. A dream of mine is to live in an African village and learn and experience things. But I am determined to one day live abroad.
You can be awesome at geography too.
Here are some things I own that help me learn more about different countries:
First, my beloved globe.
This is not just any globe. It is an interactive globe with a magic pen. I have learned SO much from this globe. I sound like I'm joking but I'm not. in fact, this is the sincerest post I've ever written. One time I was in a Discovery store and I overheard a woman asking a sales clerk about this very same globe. I love it so much that I took it upon myself to interrupt and tell the woman, "This globe is AMAZING. I have learned so much from it and it is seriously so much fun. You should get it." And guess what? She said, "Really?" and thought for a minute and said, "You know, I think I will get it." You're welcome, sales clerk. I will take my commission please.
Some countries/regions I learned about from playing with my globe:
and many many more. And yes, i remember learning them from my globe. It's an important experience, discovering a country.
Some people love to read books. I am one of them. Know what else I love to read? Atlases. Here is one of my atlases:
Another way I learn about the world is my world map puzzle:
I've only put it together one painstaking time, but hover for hours over this thing and you will learn a thing or two.
Another vehicle for geographical learning is our National Geographic Global Pursuit trivia game that we swiped from Sean's parents' house. Boy, did we rob them of a jewel. I bet they curse our names night and day for stealing such an awesome game.
*NERD ALERT* Sean and I often take a stack of trivia cards and play at nighttime before going to sleep. Sean does better at the topographical questions than I do. I'm more interested in the countries and cities and whatnot. This is a fun game because it is totally old and the questions say things like, "This city in the USSR..." or "This country, formerly known as Cambodia..." ha. I love that one. This makes it extra tricky.
Thanks for reading about my love of geography. It may bore you but it never will me. No not ever.