It was 2pm when we left Kale (a city in NW Myanmar). The whole town was in deep silence. We could hardly see anyone on the streets. Kale is located at the center of all transportation between Chin State, the India border, and lower Myanmar. Kale is one of the earliest towns that resisted the military coup with self-made weapons. Every morning all the main roads were full with people, demonstrating against the military coup. All the shops and houses were closed after the demonstrations and the town seemed like a dead or forsaken place. Soldiers would shoot you in the head if you went out. Gradually, the battle between the people and the soldiers got more and more intense. Especially, Tahan, where I went to work, became a battlefield and the nearby residents fled to other villages or Mizoram (state just across the border in India of similar ethnicity). Home is the safest place for most people, but you could still get shot at your own place if you’re unfortunate. Our nights and homes were not safe anymore.
“I can not live without work. How do I find money for my education? Where is my future? How long will the revolution take?” These questions were spinning in my head. Eventually, I decided to escape this environment and flee to another country as a refugee in the hope of a brighter future and opportunity.
Soldiers guarded the border gates of Kale and checked everyone, to varying degrees, who pass the border. We crossed 9mile (the name) gate and entered to Chin State without encountering interrogation. When we arrived in Tedim, the capital of Zomi Chin, we took a break and had lunch for the journey ahead.