From my windows on the 43rd floor

of-the-hotel-on-an-island-that-tourists-cannot-leave-at-all.

Last morning.

I have breakfast with my British friends, who are leaving, too. They’re hardy travelers and they are taking the train back to China, a privilege not available to me because I have, after all, an American passport as well as a French one. So I have to fly out. We say goodbye for now and I head to the airport.

When I land in Shenyang, Manchuria, after a one-hour flight from Pyongyang, I feel like I’m re-entering civilization.
There’s something wrong with this.

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