Stumbled on a book in a local
crackhouse bookstore recently and while this counts as one of the very few times I have left my dealer a bookstore without actually scoring a hit buying a book I did find a book I’d love to have sat and mainlined read all day.
The World’s Most Dangerous Places by Robert Young Pelton is a thick, humourous, but somewhat macabre look at the state of the world and the many ways to kick it while seeing the more interesting places therein. It’s not the kind of book you let your mom or wife read before you head to Central Africa. I’m thinking about all these things because I don’t think that I’ve had an assignment or travel opportunity since I left highschool that didn’t require either a Hostage/Ransom release agreement signed or 5 litres of vaccines pumped into me. Sharon and I went to Paris two years ago – that was relatively calm. Nearly killed by a crepe, but no permanent scars.
Anyways, all that to draw your attention, if you’re interested, to a couple links:
Robert Young Pelton’s ComeBackAlive.com is full of interesting stuff, including this map of Dangerous Places. Oddly, he seems to have trademarked the words "Dangerous Places" – can you do that? Does my blatant use of these words put me in a dangerous place legally? Can I even ask that question without paying royalties to the venerable RYP?
The second resource is one I was recently reminded of by Jordan, the Digital Explorer. Jordan is a young photographer climbing the rungs. He’s got a great eye for someone so new to the craft. Kevin Sites is a solo journalist (a SoJo) spending a year travelling through the world’s hottest conflict zones. Fascinating stuff to anyone who loves adventure travel (also known as "you’re going WHERE?"), solo travel, or has an interest on the state of things as seen from someone NOT behind a CNN or FOX desk.
Find him here at the Hotzone – there are some great articles on DRC which are of particular interest to me right now. I will be shooting in the DRC for a week sometime in late October, early November.