From Afghanistan to Zimbabwe: everything you never knew you never knew about every country on Earth.
A scientist by training and an explorer by passion, Dr. John Oldale has logged half a million miles visiting more than ninety nations. Now, he celebrates our weird and wonderful world in a cornucopia of fascinating facts brought vividly to life through the unexpected stories behind them. Touching on history, travel, politics, natural history and more, he paints a unique portrait of each country from the mightiest to the most miniscule. You won't find the following in your average travel guide:
· Why is kissing on trains banned in France?
· In what country are litigants expected to present their case at court in the form of a poem?
· Which war did women win in 1929 just by sitting down?
· If Panama hats aren’t from Panama, where are they from?
· Who eat fresh camel dung as a cure for dysentery (and why does it work)?
· Why were US disk jockeys once told they could play birthday requests on any day except the one requested?
· Which modern dictator banned old age, libraries and gold teeth, and was later replaced by his dentist?
· And 2,000 more funny, trivial, poignant, and telling facts
A must for active and armchair globe-trotters alike, A World of Curiosities will engross anyone who is at all curious about the world beyond their door. Explore and enjoy.
“Turn to any page in this compendium of countries and you’ll be surprised and amazed by its vast array of far-flung facts from around the world. Sure to satisfy of the appetite of any lover of trivia.”
—Don Voorhees, author of The Book of Totally Useless Information
“An absolute winner! A fascinating and entertaining spin around the world, its oddities and its secrets.”
—Noel Botham, author of The Book of Useless Information
“Jam-packed with facts of every description from the horrific to the hilarious. My life has been richer since I read that, in order to cram more showings into the day, one cinema in South Korea made The Sound of Music shorter by cutting out the songs.”
—Caroline Taggart, author of I Used to Know That