Dangers on the Open Road
Paul Salopek is still making his way through northern Myanmar, documenting the lives of fishermen, blacksmiths and small business owners in his now-familiar style: short, quiet videos of everyday life.
January marked 7 years on the road for Salopek, and he has taken some time to reflect on his incredible journey. In interviews, he is often asked about the dangers he has faced on the road and the human capacity for violence or anger. But despite crossing warzones in Africa and the Middle-East, he reports an undramatic reality: “On a multiyear trek that eventually will span more than 30 nations and total about 24,000 miles, landscapes of violence have been vanishingly rare.” Instead, he has found that the greatest danger often comes from motorized traffic.
His musings on violence come at an interesting time; northern Myanmar has consistently made international news due to ethnic violence and the persecution of the Rohingya minority group.