11 May 2008 XXXI

Khamsin Molossia News

New Customs Station

A new customs station has been inaugurated for our Republic, the first such establishment on Molossian soil. In the past, visitors to Molossia have arrived to a patch of dirt, not far from the Peace Pole. After the visit of Grand Duke Paul of Greifenberg, His Excellency, The President noted that our nation should have a "welcome spot" of a sort, at that location. From that idea sprang the concept of a customs post, as a first stop for visitors to Molossia. While we have no particular need for customs control, there are certain items that are prohibited in our country, such as spinach, incandescent light bulbs, tobacco and catfish. This station will help ensure that we don't have a sudden influx of these items flooding in from the wildly unregulated United States, mere Nortons away.

Thus this tiny hut was built to contain our sole customs station. At this point it is unmanned, and the sign on the door requests that visitors leave their pocket change as a customs fee. We hope to have the post manned in the near future, but in the meantime it will do, serving as a warning to those that might import illegal catfish and the like, to our sovereign soil.

"Banana" Republic

Molossia became a true Banana Republic today, with the planting of two young banana trees in Norton Park. The Great Basin Desert is high and dry, and not noted for being able to support bananas, a generally tropical tree. However, careful research by the Molossian Ministry of Agriculture and Yard Work uncovered a type of banana tree that can indeed grow here. It is called the "Basjoo", and hails from Japan. Although it doesn't actually produce edible fruit, it is a hardy tree, known to survive as far north as Canada. It most certainly will thrive in Molossia, although our never-ending wind may give it some trouble. Up to now, our young Basjoo's have grown protected in Government House, preparatory to planting. Today, the Ministry decided to go ahead and plant the bananas, now that the weather has warmed up for the year. Unlike most of the denizens of Norton Park, the bananas will require special care and feeding, but it will be worth the effort when they grow and spread their fronds across the Esplanade du Chien, providing shade for the First Dogs. Thus, today Molossia becomes a true Banana Republic. Just don't tell the United Fruit Company!

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