In the eyes of the world, North Korea is a mysterious country. Although North Korea and China are connected by mountains and rivers, and the friendship between the two countries has a long history, many people know little about the situation in North Korea before traveling to North Korea. There is a lot of speculation. After all, North Korea now implements free medical care, free education, and public medical care. The country is responsible for the unified distribution of everyone’s work, and the country also adopts a supply system for food and other daily necessities. These are different from China’s current situation. Most Chinese tourists are more interested in the North Korean countryside than in the cities of Pyongyang. What is the North Korean countryside like? What is life like for North Korean farmers? Please follow my lens to see the real images of the North Korean countryside and the conditions of North Korean farmers in terms of basic necessities of life.
The production team system is still implemented in North Korea’s rural areas. Members of the production team (farmers) work collectively and are distributed collectively. The houses of the farmers are also uniformly designed and built by the government. From the outside, these houses are almost all the same.
Every family of North Korean farmers has a large yard, just like the rural areas in China decades ago. There is also a private plot around the yard, where the farmers grow some vegetables and fruits. The harvest is their own, and they can sell it in the market if they can’t eat it at home.
Historically, North Koreans liked white, so many North Korean farmers painted the walls of their houses and yards in white to make them look more beautiful.
There is not much difference between men in rural North Korea and men in North Korean cities in terms of clothing. Basically, they usually wear a North Korean-style “people’s dress”, or gray and yellow jackets. There is a big difference between North Korean rural women and Pyongyang women in dress. Pyongyang women’s standard dress is hip skirt and long stockings, while North Korean rural women wear trousers and rain boots on their feet. Many women’s heads He was also wrapped in a turban to keep his head from getting dusty while working in the fields.
Many rural women like to carry a big backpack when they travel, which contains boiled water at home. There are few places that sell drinks in rural North Korea, so farmers like to go out with their own boiled water, and some women like Put the package on your head, but walk steadily and quickly.
In the rural areas of North Korea, the staple food of farmers is rice and white noodles, but farmers rarely eat meat throughout the year, and basically only eat a little on holidays or monthly by ticket. Other non-staple foods are also very scarce in the rural areas of North Korea, so many farmers like to go to the river to catch fish and shrimps to improve their daily monotonous diet and add a little protein. The dishes that North Korean farmers usually eat are kimchi and some common vegetables. Kimchi is an indispensable delicacy for three meals a day on the villagers’ table.
In the rural areas of North Korea, many farmers like to raise chickens, ducks and pigs. Chickens and ducks can lay eggs for food, and pigs can be killed when they are raised for the New Year. Chickens and ducks in North Korea are basically raised by eating grass, so for Chinese tourists, these chickens and ducks are 100% native chickens and ducks, real green food. There are also some North Korean villagers who raise turkeys in the wild to improve food or sell them to subsidize their families.
As was the case in rural China decades ago, cattle in rural North Korea are used for farm work and are owned by production teams. Farmers do not have the right to kill cattle, so beef is a luxury in rural North Korea, and farmers rarely have the opportunity to taste beef.
For many North Korean farmers, a bowl of cold noodles is the best food of the day. Cold noodles are a traditional food of the Korean nation. Farmers usually eat a bowl of cold noodles on holidays in North Korea.
In rural North Korea, there are no shopping malls or department stores. In larger villages, there will be a small store that sells commodities and cigarettes that farmers need in their daily lives.
In North Korea’s rural areas, bicycles are the most common means of transportation. Bicycles are very popular in North Korean rural areas. Every farmer will buy a bicycle as long as they have a little money. Therefore, almost every household in North Korean rural areas has bicycles. North Korea is also known as a bicycle country. No wonder.
In the rural areas of North Korea, ox carts are the most popular among farmers. During busy seasons, ox carts are used to transport seedlings and harvested crops. Usually, farmers also use ox carts to pull some daily necessities such as firewood. The bullock carts in rural North Korea are still of the very primitive style, and the wheels are all old-fashioned wheels without tires.
It is also a kind of enjoyment to be able to sit on a tractor in the North Korean countryside. In North Korea, tractors are not only for carrying goods, but also a means of transportation for North Korean farmers. Those old tractors are comparable to luxurious buses in the eyes of North Korean farmers. Now all tractors in North Korean rural areas are collectively owned and used by production teams.
Long-distance buses are rarely seen on the roads in rural North Korea. From Dandong to Pyongyang, I have only seen one town with a long-distance bus station. In North Korea, ordinary North Koreans need a permit issued by the local government to go to other places. Therefore, many North Korean farmers have never left their villages or big cities in their entire lives, let alone Pyongyang.