September 03, 2009 Click here for a slideshow of Polacek's photographs
It all began last year, when Tomas Polacek, a reporter for the Czech newspaper “Mlada fronta Dnes,” suggested to his editors that he could hitchhike from Prague to China and write a daily blog -- something to liven up the summer ahead of the Olympics. To his surprise, they agreed. Three weeks later, Polacek had reached Beijing and the blog was a hit.This year, Polacek, who speaks Russian, suggested a follow-up: How about hitchhiking through the Caucasus, a year after the Russia-Georgia conflict and amid growing local insurgencies, to see what life was like on the ground? Polacek’s editors did a double take, but they didn’t hesitate.Three weeks, 105 cars, and 5,000 kilometers later, Polacek found himself in the ruined capital of South Ossetia, after a journey full of surprises. He shared his impressions with RFE/RL correspondent Jeremy Bransten after his return home to Prague.
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