Skate: Following the Ancient Silk Road "Meet the Stans"

By - Monday, November 5th, 2012

Filmmaker Patrik Wallner brought a few skaters with him on an adventure through central Asia to “Meet the Stans.” Yes, there was skating, but along the way, the group encountered obstacles, friendly surprises, and experienced things that they’ll remember for a lifetime. With political and social strife rampant in many parts of central Asia, I was surprised to hear about this documentary, “Meet the Stans,” which follows Dave Bachinsky, Jimmy McDonald, Laurence Keefe, Dan Zvereff, Stas Provotorov, Gosha Konyshev, Walker Ryan, Kenny Reed and Michael Mackrodt as they follow what was known as the old silk road. Their trip began in Beijing and moved west through countries such as Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan; and unexpectedly, Afghanistan. As they moved West, the governments and the cities they visited became more dangerous and unfriendly towards tourists. But this trip wasn’t only about skateboarding; the skaters involved also came home with first-hand lessons on the state of central Asia. What’s one of them? If you’re going into Afghanistan, you better have a guide, and if you want to stay safe, your guide better have convoys of protection following them around.

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