Saturday, April 14, 2012

Niester - the river that runs through 'Calandra's Spring'

The River Niester (Dniester, Nistru or one of many alternate spellings) is the heart and soul of Transnistria, the country in which most of the action of 'Calandra's Spring' takes place.  This exotic land is the renegade state of Eastern Europe, a breakaway territory of Moldava which went independent (but not recognised) in 1992.  From then on, all kinds of illegal activities form part of the unofficial economy there - gun-running, piracy, intellectual copyright crime on a high level, counterfeiting and more.  It's a shame as the land itself is as attractive as the rest of the region, yet we are warned not to visit.  It has a high government alert from foreign affairs departments.

Explore this region - you will see that there is not much on the internet.   There are a few similar states that have a similar identity crisis such as the post USSR 'frozen conflict' nations of Nagorno-Karabakh, Abkhazia and South Ossetia.   Seceded 'countries' exist all over the world and many have active industries in selling honorific titles, local stamps, visas and other quirky souvenirs.  Some even sell university degrees.  The best buy is to purchase a title so if you want to be a 'Princess' or 'Prince' check this out.  And if you want one from a legitimate nation, try this:

It doesn't seem to be a bad deal and in a couple of generations, the world will forget that you, an unemployed hippie from Bangor actually created your esteem by forking out your dole money to transform yourself into a Baron!

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