You’re going to think we’re nuts but Kay and I have been talking about visiting the Korean DMZ (demilitarized zone), which separates the two Koreas.
We had looked forward to it even before coming to Korea, before the current hostile situation between the two republics. So, it just didn’t cross our minds that, maybe, we shouldn’t be visiting the DMZ right now.
We read in the papers this morning an article reporting that tourists have started to cancel trips to South Korea.
Even then, it didn’t cross our minds that, maybe, we shouldn’t be visiting the DMZ right now.
What crossed our minds was that we should visit the DMZ tomorrow morning because Kay is finally done with all his hospital tests and consultations and we want to visit it before his surgery next week.
So when we got back to our apartment, we requested at the front desk for them to help us book a DMZ/Panmunjeom tour.
The concierge called the tour office for us on the spot, spoke for a couple of minutes in Korean over the phone, then hung up the phone and looked at us.
“You can’t go there now. It’s too dangerous for you.”
That was when it crossed our minds that, maybe, it’s not such a great idea to be visiting the DMZ right now.
I would, though, if the tour agencies were operating. I guess it’s hard for current generation Singaporeans to appreciate the gravity of the situation because we’ve never been faced with war in our lives.
Also, I think the mood in Seoul is still rather mild. Sure, there are frequent reports on the situation in the papers and on TV, but I am still getting the impression that Seoulites feel pretty safe, on the whole.
It seems like it didn’t cross our Korean concierge’s mind, either, that maybe the DMZ is not a good tourist attraction to visit right now. He didn’t look at us incredulously and say, “Huh? You want to go to the DMZ now?”
I suppose it’s just as well. It’s already too cold in Seoul right now. I can’t imagine what it’ll be like up north. I am seriously gonna die from the cold; I hate it.
Okay, I’m not really gonna. I’ll step indoors to thaw out just before I keel over and die, I suppose.