Before today’s lecture at Pusan National University, I was not aware of how much more there was to North Korea’s relationship with the rest of the world. Our lecturer spoke about how intelligent the upper-tiered people of North Korea are; he referenced his meeting with North Korea officials, where they were acutely aware of what other countries were doing in the world. This is a stark contrast against the rest of North Korean society; they are unaware of how other governments function elsewhere and their inability to reach out to the rest of the world inhibits any possibility of ever escaping the unjust chains of North Korea. They lack humanitarian necessities, like healthcare and food security, and instead each upcoming generation are ingrained with the rules and tight fist that ruled over their parents. It sparks the question: when will significant positive change come about in North Korea?
On a much less somber note, Pusan National University is quite a hilly campus, reminding me of our lovely Pitt back home. We toured a lot through their engineering building, and there were many 3D printing machines. Again, it made me feel like I was missing out on a lot of cool things. There are many things on this trip that have piqued my interest in engineering, and I will definitely be looking more into what I can perhaps learn about on my own.
We also visited the Consulate of the United States of America in Busan. I believe they mentioned that it’s the smallest consulate building in the world, and it is certainly small; their office is only made of two rooms. Everyone at the Consulate was very nice though; our speaker spoke about his journey as an ambassador in Korea.
For an evening snack, Dr. Yun treated whoever wanted to try live octopus again. I really enjoyed seeing Sayuri gag and freak out as she tried it. It was quite entertaining, especially since these octopus were more lively than the last time. I definitely still enjoyed it, and popped a few more in my mouth.
This is also a bit random, but we saw a chrome car on the street, and it was really cool.
I also had Korean bubble tea again, but it was right after our very acidic lunch of chicken and soda. To make matters worst, I got kiwi juice, and it was terribly acidic and sour. My stomach was quite upset, but it’s alright, it was an experience!
Today was our last day of planned events, so it was a bit of a relief. I definitely think there are many things that can be improved for next year’s South Korea program, but I still enjoyed every minute of being here.