February 21, 2024

“So, why North Korea?!”

It goes without saying that my journey in North Korea was far from ordinary.  It was far from a conventional destination, far from the known, and far from the typical place one might celebrate a 23rd birthday. Upon returning to the U.S., and as posed to me many times before departing, a question echoed: So, tell me again, why would you go to North Korea?

Travel is a means by which one can escape the ‘everyday.’ Routine does not exist while traveling and the ‘routine’ that is present is exciting at every moment (good or bad), which, by definition, is anything but ‘routine’. In that moment of travel, in that place on that day, you have never experienced that exact ‘routine’ before. So the routine of travel is actually an adventure, evolving by the second. Moreover, travel is a way to liberate yourself – to free yourself, to dream and to grow, a way to leave your comfort zone. Travel is a balance between learning about foreign cultures, yet feeling the freedom to experience a different world – even just for a few days.