Thursday, November 11, 2010
Teaching in North Korea
This afternoon, amidst the tail-end of all this VIP stuff, I chatted with a British Council teacher-trainer who's just started a two-year contract in Pyongyang. Actually, I first met him in our office a couple of months ago when he was receiving his briefings, and now he's in town for a week before going back for the long hard winter. Fascinating experience. Lives in a compound with other foreigners. Not allowed to fraternise with local people. No freedom of movement. Have to hand your mobile phone in at the airport. Not much to do. No real shops to speak of. Extraordinary place... Am just about to start reading Barbara Demick's Nothing to Envy: Real Lives in North Korea. And a colleague of mine is very good friends with someone who organizes visits there. I'm very tempted.