National Gifts Exhibition House

Nearly everywhere in the world it is courteous and common practice to bestow gifts upon leaders and dignitaries on official visits. Also, gifts are commonly given and received on important national days, birthdays and such like.

While the North Korean Leaders (here I mean Kim Il-sung, Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-un and, oddly perhaps, Kim Jong-suk (wife of Kim Il-sung and mother to Kim Jong-il)) have travelled very little outside of North Korea and few leaders or high officials visit them from overseas they have managed to amass ‘hundreds of thousands’ of gifts since 1945. These have come from all corners of the world as well as from within North Korea – where the Leaders have travelled somewhat more, dispensing their trademark on-the-spot guidance and this, that and everything. Continue reading “National Gifts Exhibition House”

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Mother Kim Jong-suk – From Kitchen Hand to Commander of Mt Paektu

Our primary reason for visiting the north east city of Hoeryong was to learn about Kim Jong-suk, one of the “three Commanders of Mt Paektu”, hero of the anti-Japanese revolutionary forces and mother to Kim Jong-il – the successor to North Korea’s first post Japanese occupation leader, his father Kim Il-sung. Continue reading “Mother Kim Jong-suk – From Kitchen Hand to Commander of Mt Paektu”

What Do North Koreans Think Of Americans?

In the introductory review on my September 2018 visit to North Korea I noted that the US President, Donald Trump, had entered into an amorous relationship with Kim Jong-un. On 29 September, 2018 at a political rally in Wheeling, West Virginia, President Trump declared that he and Kim Jong-un “fell in love” after the North Korean leader wrote him “beautiful letters”.

“I was really being tough, and so was he,” President Trump said of Marshal Kim. “And we were going back and forth, and then we fell in love, OK? No, really. He wrote me beautiful letters. And they’re great letters. We fell in love.” Continue reading “What Do North Koreans Think Of Americans?”

The Australian War Memorial At Night

As part of the its activity to commemorate the centenary of the 11 November 1918 Armistice, which brought about the end of World War I, the Australian War Memorial opened its commemorative area for night-time viewing (up to 10pm) on a number of weekends running up 11 November 2018. This rare event allowed visitors to see the memorial in a different light. Again, as part of its commemorative programme visitors were also able to enjoy the Memorial’s temporary 62,000 Poppy Display by night. Continue reading “The Australian War Memorial At Night”

South Australian Maritime Museum

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While physically not a large museum, the collection is contained on three small floors, there is quite a bit of content to cover. Overall the museum is informative and worth an hour or two depending on your level of interest in things nautical. Your ticket allows multiple visits on the same day should you really get into it and wish to go out for a break (or to eat as there is no on-site eatery. There is a reasonable café just outside the museum’s entrance). Continue reading “South Australian Maritime Museum”