The Journey Along The Silk Road


Extreme Climate Special The Scorching Silk Road Ken Ogata Traveling along
the Silk Road Railway Land Bridge Narration and Script Adaptation by
Rodger Parsons July, 199 1 Here we are… Wow… Wow. February, 1997 Turfan
Xinjiang UygurAutonomous Region Ken Ogata You said that the sheep was
100 Yuan (about 1 5 dollars) No, it’s 1 20 Yuan. This is the best canola oil! ls anybody sick? This snake works for
different illnesses. Turfan raisins from the local harvest,
approx. 10 cents. Huo Yan Mountain Urmuqi
Xinjiang UygurAutonomous Region l’d like to buy this. What are you doing? l am the station manager and l didn’t
give you permission to film here. Are you still filming?
Stop! Stop! You do not have permission
to get on this train! Today has been the coldest day
since we’ve been in China… …yet l’m drenched in sweat. Turfan, Urmuqi, Alashankou Alashankou l’ve seen a fence on the border
of these countries many times. Kazakhstan: Chinese Border Druzhba
(Kazakhstan) Do you know anyone who has Yuens? That was a reasonable rate. Rail width in China is 1 435mm
in Kazakhstan it’s 1 524mm Wow… This would have been
unbearable in the summertime. The Scorching Silk Road l’ve been shaken around. Tossed from side to side. l kicked off my blanket
and slept 1 2 hours. Urmuqi, Druzhba, Almati Almati
(Kazakhastan) Warm pirogues for sale! Would you like hot tea and food? How much would 380 be? A little over five dollars. A five dollar watch? Can you set the date? lt won’t break, will it? Gokturk Sculptures Lake lssyk-Kul
(Kyrgyzstan) The Scorching Silk Road Look at all these human bones! Oh, this is definitely human. This skull is frozen to the ground.
lt won’t budge. Scythian Golden Armor
(Kazakhastan Museum of Archaeology) The strong members are shepherds,
the weak members farm. lt’s been a long time! You must be surprised
by the sudden visit! No, this is wonderful!
We consider guests to be gods! How old are you? Mr. Urukari (7 3) You’re still vibrant! He says he still has
a lot of life left in him. He’s got a strong, loud voice. Right now, he’s fasting. He said, ”You are not Muslim,
so please eat and drink.” lt’s a beautiful place. Come in the summertime. Even though they were fasting, they still
served us homemade bread. He says you can sleep in his yurt. He’ll prepare for your visit. He also has sheep. He has sheep and meat… lf you come, he will slaughter a
young horse. He’ll prepare a feast. Almati, Lake lssyk-Kul, Tashkent Tashkent
(Uzbekistan) Tashkent, Samarkand Samarkand
(Uzbekistan) The burial vault, Shahi Zinda Five pillars of lslam Witnessing, Prayer, Charity,
Fasting and the Pilgrimage to Mecca The Scorching Silk Road Gallyaaral
(Uzbekistan) l feel like l’m in jail. Fafhard ( 1 7) l hope you become a good teacher . He says thank you. He has a stern look on his face,
but his handshake was firm. l enjoyed that. Thank you. Thank you. Registan Central Square
Samarkand July, 1997 Lake lssyk-Kul
(Kyrgyzstan) Mr. Urukari Maybe it’s better to live a simple life. lt’s important to live with nature. l’m taking a photo! Okay! Bukhara
(Uzbekistan) Get this in for me! This, too! There’s more room! The train’s moving!
lt’s dangerous! Get off! Are those cherries? What is this? Carrots. How much can you sell this for? 1 kg is worth 33 sum. How many kg are in here? 1 kg goes for about 30 cents. About 60 kg. 60 kg. This is heavy! What is it? How much? lt’s yogurt. lt’s good. How much? l hope l don’t get sick. ls it good? Yes, it is. Take my kid! Get the luggage in first! Where’s my kid? Back off, back off. l won’t take anyone who doesn’t pay! That’s it! l said l would pay!
Why don’t you take it? See? l will pay you!
So let me get a ride! You! Get off! What? l paid! Don’t be so cruel because l can’t pay! You must have a mother around my age.
l’m sure! Bukhara, Charjou Charjou
(Turkmenistan) The Scorching Silk Road Ashkabad
(Turkmenistan) lt’s like l’m in the rain. l can’t see. He says it’s Okay. lt’s Okay? l’m the one wearing it. He says that the temperature in the hat
stays at 35°C when it’s 50°C outside Want to buy it? No. Did you buy them all? lt’s cheap. He bought a lot of them. How much for everything? He says he bought a female
with a calf for 400 dollars. He bought the camels for the milk…
400 dollars for a female camel and her calf. They drink the milk when it’s hot. lt’s used like medicine. The camel milk, right? How much for this? Camel’s Milk 1 cup 2 cents The Akhal-Teke Horse Blood-Sweating Horses l can’t believe it. Well… lt’s 60°C. Hot wind is blowing. 60°C. This is the first time
l’ve felt wind this hot. l thought l was going to go crazy . Nap during the scorching heat
of the Silk Road. Ashkabad Station The Scorching Silk Road Narration and Script Adaptation by
Rodger Parsons lranian side
Serakhs Mashhad
(lran) Turfan, Serakhs, Ashkabad,
Mashhad, Tehran lf this heat continues like this, well… l think l’m going crazy. Well, okay, l’m not going that crazy. Everything l’ve eaten has been good.
l’m thankful for that. Tehran lsfahan See, these designs were simplified… Well, l’m from Japan. …and they traveled to Japan.
Even now we use… As you can see… …these patterns. The complex patterns that you’ve created
were simplified as they traveled east. l had no idea that the patterns
traveled all the way to Japan. The Scorching Silk Road Tower of Silence
Yazd, lran Zoroastrian lt’s so hot everyday. l’ve lost so many things
on this trip along the way. Now, even my hat’s gone. Funeral Area l might not be able to climb this. Zoroastrian Village
Mobarakeh l’m going in. 1 2 Years old. 1 2 years old? What do you do every day?
Mehrumashi Amman ( 1 2) l read, study, swim
and play basketball. This is interesting. There’s a green garden on that plot. lt looks like they have a tiller . Tonight’s a full moon. lt looks like l’m in a different dimension. What is this? When it’s hot, wave it like this… l’m sorry. lt’s for cleaning. Yeah, it’s really dusty.
You use it like this, right? Do you know about Japan? l know that it’s a name of a country,
but that’s about it. People’s voices sound
like music to my ears. Arles Hottadhi ( 16) The white handprints are
the symbol of a sacred site. Yazd, Tehran, lsfahan Big Ararat / Small Ararat The Scorching Silk Road He says he’s going to ask. Let’s go. Daut Pirati ( 11 ) Are you off from school? Mandatory schooling ends at 5th grade,
so he’s done. He’s finished with school. What do you do every day? He takes care of the livestock. What’s in your bag? He has bread. Bread? He can’t go back home until it’s dark.
So, it’s his meal until then. That’s my village. He says that’s his home. Kabakoy Village
(Turkey) Does she go to school? Daut’s sister, Hatitia (8) They don’t have any teachers. Kids start school when they’re 7,
but 8 year olds can’t go, either. No teachers? Hatitia can’t go to school.
So she only speaks Kurdish. A teacher came to school, but
he left without saying anything. How do they study? They don’t study anymore.
Daut’s older brother, Mendes( 1 3) They need to know how to
read and write as an adult. They said it’s important, but… Since they have no teachers,
they have to wait. They said one’s coming in the winter. They say that they can see the border
and that the lranian army is there. That’s lran? lranian Military Facility He says that he’s interested in Japan
and he would like to visit. Well, l’m very interested in the Kurds. The Kurds want their own country,
their own independence, right? They say that they’re Turkish,
and they’re okay like this. They say that they’ll be punished
for saying things like that. Oh l see. l get it. What do you want to be when you grow
up? He says that once he’s done with work,
he’d like to go back to school. l’d like to be a doctor. That’s great! What is that? lt’s cheese. Cheese. Well, Daut… This is something
l had the hotel prepare for me. Would you like some? He says thank you. This is for you… Uh, can l have some of your food? How is it? He says it’s good. This bread is tough. ln my village, the spring water is so clear
and plentiful… (Kurdish folk song) The Scorching Silk Road Ankara Castle
(Turkey) Can you see at all? He was born blind. He’s been blind since he was born! How much? 300,000 Turkish Lira. 10 Lemons
300,000 Turkish Lira (about $3) 300,000? Here’s 250,000 and 50,000… Here is 50,000. Okay, here is 300,000. l can tell how much
a bill is worth by feel. He puts different bills
in different pockets. lt’s heavy! Really heavy! Ankara Station June, 1997
Nagano Prefecture, Japan Ueda Silkworm Breeding Committee This is the Japanese male.
This is the Chinese female. Chinese Shougetsu / Japanese Shunrei Shunrei-Shougetsu Bursa
(Turkey) Koza Han
(House of the Silk Trade) Bas Relief based on a silk string Akchalar Village The Scorching Silk Road Ankara, Bursa, lstanbul You never know where
you could get hurt. Bandages for sale! At the department store, an extension cord
will cost you 300,000 liras. l will sell this extension cord with
3 outlets for 250,000 liras! You’re Japanese?
Sorry, but these weren’t made in Japan. First come, first served.
Quantity’s limited! lstanbul
Haydarpasa Train Station on the Asian side l can smell the ocean! l feel like all l’ve been doing is wandering
around deserts, plains and mountains. The ocean! lt’s raining in lstanbul! This is the first time it’s rained
during my entire trip. What a blessing. Shintaro Katsu told me that my acting
in Japanese dramas was good enough… …so l didn’t need to do
any Western stuff. l told him l wanted to do
something different. ”There is no need for that.” That’s what he told me. l left Japan and walked around,
riding on trains. Maybe this is the ”something
different” that l wanted to do. Sometimes, the small paths in the
garden seem a lot more interesting… …than the big main streets. l’ve never crossed so many borders
between winter and summer before. l spent 90% of my time crossing borders. l hear that in the 21 st century ,
a train will connect Beijing to lstanbul. Each country has their own situation. Rail widths are different
between countries. l don’t think it’s going to be easy
to connect Beijing to lstanbul and… …lstanbul to Europe. Sometimes, it’s -30°C. Sometimes, it’s 60°C. l really learned that human beings
can be resilient, graceful, and tough. They live in impoverished
conditions on barren lands. However, a young man with a gleam in
his eye dreaming about becoming a
doctor… …taught me that humans have hope
but need to also have courage to dream. l met a lot of people. Many people supported me along the way . The Silk Road has touched me deeply,
and has given me great joy. lt was a great journey . lstanbul
Sirkeci Station, European side


100 Responses

  1. Rochelle Whitney

    January 28, 2019 8:16 am

    Thank you for allowing me to also learn that human beings can be resilient, graceful and tough. Also, that although we have hope it  takes courage to dream.

  2. dj osearth

    January 28, 2019 11:19 pm

    53:58 What a sweet little helper! That 'kids laughing' footage is so genuine. ;]

    Edit: thought the kids laughing was edited from a different time but they genuinely takes place simultaneously, you can even see the splashes. Oh geez I'm a suspicious viewer..

  3. roz pillay

    February 4, 2019 4:32 am

    The British will have to give many answers for their crimes against humanity. They are the ones who created almost all of the conflict zones in the world we know.

  4. Mohammad Ali

    February 14, 2019 6:55 pm

    Interesting documentary indeed. That was a painful trip by being exposed to many cultures and languages. Only villagers and local people around the old railroads were shown. The crew who filmed, managed the journey, carried the luggage, pick up the translators and suffered along with ken were not shown. It would be impossible for a single person with a small backpack to survive this journey. Big cities and old civilizations were skipped. Inaccurate statements were made. For example it was stated that Kurds were divided between Iran and Turkey and they were claimed to be not existed in Turkey. Kurds in facts are big nation divided between Iran, Turkey, Iraq and Syria. The railroads may be recent developed in the last century, but the silk road, not paved by asphalt and used by beasts was existed thousands of years. It was not a single straight road, but branched out to reach at numerous cities as far as Mecca in Saudi Arabia. As far as I have seen the railroads in Iran and Turkey, there have been many modern and fast-traveling trains in the route for more than 30 years. The documentary has purposely focused on the poorest parts of communities and transportation, the ones which used by local villagers.

  5. mete canbaz

    March 3, 2019 1:53 am

    That boy singing turkish song with orginal turkish, not kurdish. This was a big fault! And if a child can speak turkish language easily, believe me they are absolutely turkish, not kurdish. Because even kurdish adults cant speak easily turkish well. And in that part of video there is no one adults opinnion for the check their id's… and why the conversations growing up in the turkish parts?

  6. myxyplyx

    March 3, 2019 10:17 am

    Like the silk worm China leaders weave each thread.One thread is all it takes.A bragging right or superstition?Str8 to the understanding of mercy a timeless back.road they state is mastered only by China.See their patience.& Weight.

  7. Priyanshu Mishra

    March 5, 2019 4:42 pm

    Watching this today , In 2019 , I realised world was much better place back in 1997.
    Really , this was heart touching.

  8. Tahira Mehmet

    March 7, 2019 8:34 am

    Bizarre negative footage, flashing, wtf, just show the fucking video without gimmicks.

  9. Anon Ymous

    March 8, 2019 8:54 am

    male dominated culture is miserable, mean and destructive . and can only conceptualise a master-slave dialectic. ..roll on the end of this bullshit… lets reawaken the human family…..

  10. georgewu5

    March 10, 2019 5:50 am

    Such a vast empty land! It certainly needs a lot of shipping container housing, from China to Turkey and to England. Continue after the Atlantic Ocean, from New York to California. George Wu, ARCHITECT, A.I.A., NCARB 2019-3-10 It is a great world. So don't fuck it up!

  11. Mannan Shah

    March 10, 2019 9:01 pm

    So beautiful n heart touching video .we learned the only language is the language of love n respect to all humen apart from language they speak culture n boundaries.All are humen all are pretty and have a loving heart belong to any continent the bond among all is a bond of brotherhood and love .PEACE lyes in love n respect.

  12. Robert Jansina

    March 23, 2019 3:32 am

    Unfortunately Kurdish people are both sides have no allowed our languages in school and then there is no education Kurdish tongue in iran turkey and araq and fucking sorya to we Will fuck 4of them it's clear and as soon as possible

  13. Walter Sorio

    March 27, 2019 8:45 pm

    The lady interpreter do the good job for Ken explorer… She can speak any language for any destination ,

  14. Professor Engineer Muhammad Saleh Sheikh

    March 28, 2019 5:28 pm

    This appears to be The Life Time Achievement of Mr. Ken, in the age of 60 years!
    Wonderful touch to the subject!

  15. Moo Moo Puppy

    March 30, 2019 2:10 pm

    I love this NHK documentary, and its very rare and very essential for any history/geography buff.

  16. Robert Eckard

    March 31, 2019 1:25 am

    What a incredible documentary film of a area of Europe and Asia that most people in the west have no understanding and importance as to history,geography and culture. What a wonderful piece of work to bring this to those who are interested in Silk Road and what it meant.

  17. Beverley Stevens

    April 7, 2019 12:06 pm

    Beautiful documentary, bought back memories of the lovely people we met in some of these countries.

  18. Suzanna Bradley

    April 16, 2019 5:44 am

    Thanks for sharing your travel history and culture enjoy its very much… 2 young shepherds touch me heart ❤️👍

  19. EconMan

    May 8, 2019 1:30 am

    three years ago I took ground transportation (mostly trains)including walking from London to Singapore, and part of my journey was this very train. It was an adventure of a lifetime. Took two months. But I took my time. In some places, the train might be very late or it might not come at all. Was "stranded" several times, yet each time some local took me in and made a new friend. I bet at least 1/4 of my meals were free from local families inviting me into their homes…. We don't do that!
    I saw parts of the world the tourists rarely see, but fly over and drive around. Everyone was curious about me. In the smaller villages, I was the first american they had even seen in the flesh.

    Thanks for the vid. Brought back fond memories.

  20. Robert Harper

    May 11, 2019 4:22 am

    Such beautiful people in those countries the kids were all happy. Great film. I wonder if Ken is still alive and did Doet become a Dr.? He definitely was a man at such a young age. American children have no clue how weak they are psychologically.

  21. Adilson DeSouza

    May 18, 2019 6:37 am

    That two little kurds boy and that little girl are my son and daughter my doctor and nurse. They are on my way looking for me to treat my heart, my body, my brain. …


    May 23, 2019 1:10 am

    A 'terrorist' organisation, is that how a small group protesting their independence from China is referred to. Well now twenty years on the Yagur had every right to as they were proved correct, the social credit system was first implemented here as a testing ground as many of its population were thrown into concentration camps for re-education, now with its centuries old buildings torn down because of 'saftey' issues along goes with it a large part of their culture gone forever.

    Imagine a world where every is uniform, every idea becomes stagnate so mankind dies out….say no more.

  23. Ray West

    May 27, 2019 4:51 am

    Awesome video, I really loved it but wish there was more english translations of the conversations so I didn't feel I missed so much. Still a great trip. RIP Ken & thanks.

  24. Oragamey

    May 31, 2019 4:49 am

    It did feel like a spiritual journey , breaking bread moments everywhere , and a look at the salt of the earth peacefull people , gives one hope in people . Maybe all is not lost in the world . Very nice .

  25. Thomas Schmelzer

    June 4, 2019 7:48 am

    Bring those Kurdish kids out of Turkey and bring them to America. They can go to school here. Turkish government are creeps. Thank you for a wonderful Video Ken.

  26. cadmiel inot

    June 6, 2019 6:08 am

    One of the best documentary…imagine how many countries you could be seen and experience their culture only by means of silk road railway trains…I'm came from the Phil…I'd expect that the Phil govt . be the one of it's shareholder..of the great silk road…


    June 8, 2019 3:28 pm

    The fuck is zuroastrian huh THE FUCK IS IT nonsense
    This the shit I'm talking bout man the older I get the less I'm enthused about religion its a moral shortcoming like superstition almost

  28. Nachhatar Sidhu

    June 8, 2019 8:58 pm

    At 1.25.00 with two Kurdish kids !! Those moments ….can ,t explain !! God bless them all …..

  29. salim ahmad

    June 9, 2019 8:50 am

    .ken ogata san you are good man..Rip) thanks for all japan tim journey silk road..thanks for sharing..

  30. 11 11

    June 11, 2019 2:57 am

    Love this documentary. The narrator is amazing he goes out of his way to mispronounce everything even european names xD. Still, love this documentary though. rip ken

  31. D Wetick

    June 13, 2019 9:37 pm

    When governments are un-responsive to the people, the people turn to prayer…what else can they do?

  32. random name

    June 14, 2019 4:22 pm

    this helped me more than Ican covey with word. From the bottom of my heart, thank you Ken.

  33. Edward Yamada

    June 16, 2019 10:48 pm

    For those of you who don’t know, Ogata Ken is one of Japan’s most famous and greatest actors, revered in his country. He is an amazing human being. The last part, I wish you all could understand the meaning of what he said in Istanbul at the end, it was very moving.

  34. Marie Brodowicz

    June 17, 2019 9:45 pm

    The Kurdish people are so beautiful. Doud stole my heart. Was pleasantly surprised to find that part of my ancestry is Kurdish.

  35. knrasmus

    June 18, 2019 9:32 pm

    The Kurdish kids! So full of smile and joy in their beautiful faces! You can't help but love them. May these children get their own country to rule. It must be one of the greatest wishes.

  36. Pedro Daniel Pfaff

    June 19, 2019 8:16 am

    Going along the Silk Road of the former Soviet Republics. The Racism of Hollywood is unforgivable. Hollywood always depicted the Soviet Union as "White Caucasian s" Unforgivable that the world did not know about the Asians even existed in the Soviet Union. Shameless of the very people that are always accusing the Germans of being racist.Unbelievable.

  37. Armenia Power masi

    June 20, 2019 9:07 am

    ser the land where kuridhs live in armenian land who turk and kor kild armenian family women en childeren en stol from them bout when i so you dont tel true things about history i com shok who can geve so wrong infos

  38. MrRokkafella

    June 22, 2019 6:08 am

    @1:39:30 I recognize the guy who sells stuff at this train (Adapazari- Haydarpasa) from mid '80's and this video shot in the ''97's he is still doing the same thing.. Journey was amazing and I am very impressed with Ken's translator all the way from Kyrgyzstan to Turkey. She knows all of the Turkic dialects perhaps she was a Turkolog.

  39. Border Reiver

    June 26, 2019 9:05 pm

    an interesting journey but needed sub-titles in English as no idea what was said ….pity the vile regime in Iran persecutes the Zoroastrians..and Turkey pesecutes the Kurds…

  40. medusanerve smyth

    July 5, 2019 2:56 am

    INSPIRATIONAL!!!! From the emerging countries which were the Soviet republics, to the sacred places in Iran. The benevolence of the children who seem to know more of the world than politicians or ignorant adults like me. Mr. Ohashi has a refined nature about him that indeed keeps you interested.

  41. dominick virgilio

    July 9, 2019 8:06 pm

    The u.s. is trying to provoke Iran into war and they want nothing but peace Trump the Coward won;t lift the sancations so the people of iran can be more independent what a fucking loser!

  42. Dave Benson

    July 14, 2019 6:07 am

    While watching this video my heart is eager to experience what this Japanese did. It was so amazing!

  43. Larry Harrison

    July 20, 2019 11:01 pm

    Yes the Earth is beautiful, but open your eyes and see, the Earth is Flat and it does not move. Thanks.


    August 1, 2019 1:21 am

    472 people gave a thumbs-down on this video. This is the only video where I have observed humanity at its best. Bless you Ken.

  45. David Humphreys

    August 2, 2019 8:59 pm

    At 1:09 I stopped watching because of a deveoloping headache, due to all the snapping edits. Imspossible to follow visually and that's why I tuned in. BAH!

  46. wilson lawson

    August 3, 2019 9:36 am

    Quick! Break out the cup cakes and lemonade, we're all regressing to childhood where everybody was a friend and nobody had bad intentions. Was that ever true? Even in childhood? Yeah, right. You can trust nobody. Especially muslims. And the Chinese will find that out the hard way.

  47. Cecilio Thomas

    September 2, 2019 5:52 am

    This was an exciting journey, ken was very humble and touching in this path, and well connected with people.


Leave a Reply