Thursday, December 7

What an enchanting way to live one's life

One day an American named Paul Salopek left his work as a war correspondent and began walking. What came from that was an amazing journey on foot. Dubbed the "Out of Eden Walk," it's a seven-year walk along one of the routes taken by early humans to migrate out of Africa, a transcontinental foot journey that will cover more than 20,000 miles. 

Along the way, Salopek reports on what he sees for a variety of publications and shares video of places and peoples few even know about. His walk is funded by National Geographic Magazine, the Knight Foundation and the Abundance Foundation.

The foot trek hardly circumscribes his life, full of adventures bound to fascinate the young and young at heart. There's just no way to describe Paul Salopek's life in a few words -- for example he's worked as a commercial fisherman; in 1998 he won a Pulitzer Prize for explanatory reporting on the human genome project; in 2001 he won another Pulitzer for reporting on Africa; in 2006 found himself ambushed and imprisoned in Darfur -- but a start is Wikipedia's article about him.

And there's a recent six minute interview for PBS NewsHour about the present part of his journey, which has taken him through regions in Afghanistan where the people are completely untouched by terrorism and war, and into Pakistan.

There is a transcript for the interview at the PBS site, but the video discussion is against the backdrop of stunningly beautiful terrains and people he's met in those remote parts, and features a map of his route.  

I see from comparing a photograph at Google taken when he was younger -- he's now 55 -- and the video interview at PBS that his adventurous walk across the world has turned his hair grey. I'd say the grey hairs were worth it, and I think he would agree.


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