People often want to go on a journey even though it is not easy to leave daily life aside for a long time. Kwon Dong-hyeop, a student from the CWNU Department of International Relations, has traveled to 30 countries. He likes enjoying a life which is away from his repetitive routine, thrilling in a strange place, and encounter a world he has never seen before. That’s why he likes traveling. Let’s listen to his story in more detail.
Q: Please introduce yourself.
A: Hello, I'm Kwon Dong-hyeop. I love traveling. The first place I traveled was Japan. I went to Japan with my sisters before I entered the high school. Japan is close to Korea and my eldest sister could speak Japanese. So we decided to go to Japan. The process of planning and packing before leaving for the trip was all exciting. It was also very interesting to experience the culture and food of that country. I enjoyed the excitement of exploring a strange and new place that I have never seen before. The first experience was so good that I have been traveling ever since.
Q: What do you think is the attraction of traveling?
A: I think the biggest attraction is that I am able to take the time to look back on myself. When I went to Thailand, it was on a holiday called ‘Songkran’. On this day, there is a festival where people spray water on each other to chase away bad luck. I also bought a water gun and went all out to enjoy the festival. Unfortunately, my cellphone got wet and broke. I was so angry that I screamed at people who were enjoying the festival. When I came back home, I thought I might have let my anger get the better of me in the moment. So I didn't enjoy the festival. I felt bad for yelling at people and I regret that I couldn’t control myself. Since then, I’ve tried to be more in control of my mood. I think the charm of travel is that I can learn what my weaknesses are and can think about how to improve myself.
▲ He took a picture at El Alto.
And the city which is under his feet is La Paz in Bolivia.
Q: Which country is the most memorable?
A: The most memorable country is La Paz, the capital of Bolivia. This city is a 3,800-meter high mountain, surrounded by basins, and it's a unique landscape. It is called as the first capital under the sky. Because it was a high area, I was out of breath for lack of oxygen. There were even friends who wore oxygen masks. But the night view made me forget all these hardships. The house was built on a steep mountain, so the lights looked really beautiful from above at night.
Q: Do you have any travel tips?
A: I recommend learning the language of the country. Even if it's not a perfect sentence, you'll feel closer to the locals just by saying one simple word. If foreigners speak Korean awkwardly, nobody thinks badly of them. I think it’s a good idea to study the country you’re traveling to, and learn their language.
Q: Do you have any advice for readers who are worried about traveling?
A: I hope you don't think traveling is too difficult. I used to be obsessed with doing everything while traveling because I was spending a lot of money on traveling. I thought that I had to go to all the famous destinations that others went to. But I realized that it’s contrary to a free trip which I pursued. After that, I could find meaning in the trip from the small things. I think it's enough to appreciate the feelings, experiences, and the meaning of the trip, even if it didn’t seem like something enormous. Don't hesitate to buy a plane ticket. If you don't take action, then you may never fulfill your future travel plans.
|▲ The countries that he has visited|
By Kim Daeun, cub-reporter firstname.lastname@example.org
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