Day 12 – Leaving North Korea

Pyongyang, North Korea

Well, I left a little teaser in my last blog about the dinner I had and yup, I got food poisioning.

Again.

It seems every trip I go on now I end up with food poisoning at some point.

I guess it’s not really a surprise considering the general lack of hygiene and food safety going on in other parts of the world.

Anyway, after an hour in bed I ended in the bathroom for an hour and a half in the middle of the night.

I actually threw up for the first time in over 15 years and filled half a sink full.

Yeah, it was alot and it was violent.

The best part is that I was soon departing on extended train journey to first Beijing and then on to Shanghai in just a few hours time.

Nothing like squat toilets on a train when you have food poisoning.

Anyway, that’s all I say about that and even though this is my last memory of North Korea, I certainly am not going to let it tarnish the amazing journey I went on and all the great things I experienced.

After just a few hours sleep I packed up everything and met my little train group for the journey out of North Korea.

In total I ended up spending just over $300 while I was here and I’m happy with every penny I spent.

I’m taking so much home with me that it was a great challenge closing up my backpack this morning but I somehow managed to do it.

At 9am, myself, Shane and Juana headed back to the train station as the other 8 had already boarded their flight a few hours earlier.

The train left at 9:55 and by 3pm we had made our way to Sinjujiu, the North Korean border town, for the long and arduous immigration check.

As with when we entered the country, we were subjected to intense scrutiny as we were leaving.

An hour and a half later we took the quick 5 minute train ride across the border to Dandong.

We actually had a couple of hours to kill before our long overnight train left at 6:30 so we headed to KFC to relax and wait.

Amazingly I was able to get free wifi at the KFC and was able to send a quick email to my mom saying all was well.

I tried in vain to hop onto Facebook but trying to connect a VPN piggybacked on top of free wifi just isn’t a thing so Facebook land would have to wait another 24 hours to find out I was indeed alive and well and out of North Korea.

By this time I had eaten anything since the night before and although I was going on 20 hours of not eating, I still had no appetite.

We boarded our overnight train at 6:30 and I immediately popped on my sleep mask and went to sleep.

With the exception of a couple pit stops to the toilet in the middle of night, it was a pleasant 15 hour journey and I actually managed to sleep pretty well.

At 9am we arrived back in Beijing officially ending the North Korean portion of the great DPRK trip.

On to Shanghai…

DPRK Trip 2018, Trip Journal, Pyongyang, North Korea
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