Trips once taken

The Caucasus and Sochi

Nearly 30 years ago I got to spend a bit of time on the Black Sea in Odessa. During one of my incursions, I was invited to go to Georgia (not the one you are thinking of) and visit with a physician in the city of Tbilisi. We took a day trip into the Caucasus Mountains and after some wrangling, got across the border for dinner in Sochi.  Stalin, long dead but the memory lingered on, vacationed there so it was kept up after the war and maintained in good shape.

The mountains were the main attraction.  They seemed like they have seen more - if they had eyes - than others.  It is hard to explain but I felt like when we stopped for a view we were literally looking at the other side of the world.

It also took a zam-wiff-zoom to link up one of my favorite pieces of music, "Caucasian Sketches" with the mountains and not the "are you white/caucasian" found on the credit card applications.
The matter of you being "caucasian" is as follows:

The term "Caucasian race" was coined by the German philosopher Christoph Meiners in his The Outline of History of Mankind (1785). Meiners' term was given wider circulation in the 1790s by Johann Friedrich Blumenbach, a German professor of medicine and member of the BritishRoyal Society, who is considered one of the founders of the discipline ofanthropology.

Meiners' treatise was widely read in the German intellectual circles of its day, despite muted criticism of its scholarship. Meiners proposed a taxonomy of human beings which involved only two races (Rassen): Caucasians and Mongolians. He considered Caucasians to be more physically attractive than Mongolians, notably because they had paler skin; Caucasians were also more sensitive and more morally virtuous than Mongolians. Later he would make similar distinctions within the Caucasian group, concluding that the Germans were the most attractive and virtuous people on earth. The name "Caucasian" derived from the Southern Caucasus region (or what is now the countries of Georgia and Armenia), because he considered the people of this region to be the archetype for the grouping. 

Thus armed with knowledge and trivia, you can go on with your day.


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