Blanketing opinions that I'll probably regret soon.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Countries That I Never Need to Visit

When I'm on my death bed, if I've never set one toe into the following countries, I will not utter one complaint.

- Korea. I'll be fine with doing a google image search on "korea" while eating rotten spicy cabbage instead of travelling there. And I'm talking both north and south. I picture this country being one giant sterile, watered-down version of China. UPDATE: MARCH, 2007: I HAVE FINALLY VISITED KOREA AND I LIKED IT. I TAKE BACK THIS CRITICISM OF IT.

- Central African Republic (CAR). Isn't this the country where one of their dictators used to eat the hearts of children? (No, that wasn't Idi Amin). From what I've heard, this country is like a poorer, more boring Sudan without all the news coverage.

- That tiny little piece of land that's technically "Russia" but is just south of Lithuania in mainland Europe. WTF is this hunk of shit sliver of land? Someone told me Descartes or some other famous philosopher was born here, but I picture it being like a never-ending Newark, New Jersey ... just poorer, and with dead fields in between all the rusting machinery.

- El Salvador. Is there any charm to El Salvador? Are there even any archaelogical ruins in this arm pit of a country? Not to be cruel, but I picture this country as endless numbers of scruffy chickens, snot-nosed hungry children and cess pools. No thanks.

- Kyrgyzstan. This is the country that has intitutionalized wife kidnapping. No joke. I saw a documentary on this bullshit. It's so much a part of their culture that entire families participate in stealing women to give to their sons. I know a lot of other countries are horrible to their women, but Kyrgyzstan seems to do it in such a pissant backwards way it just makes me want to eternally curse their name.

- Singapore. It's not the lashings or death to drug smugglers that makes me have no interest in this vapid city state. In my mind, this country represents all the dull parts of humanity: conservatism, uptight religion, greed and intolerance. You could re-create Singapore if you rounded up all the right wingers in the US, gave them the isle of Manhattan, issued them guns, and then programed everyone into humorless robots.
Comments:
Thanks for laying that down. I have always had the same feelings about my own list of countries, the Central African Republic being one of them. A friend of mine was in the Peace Corps about ten years ago and had to escape from the country once the started to execute any and all whites. Some people don't get why you don't want to visit a country though. "dude...that is so unadventurous." I just tell them to go have a great adventure locally in Geary Indiana to see what I am talking about.
 
"Central African Republic" sounds like a fake country name. I'm going to Google that one.
 
I'll make sure to skip all these when I go on my fabulous globe-trot.
 
El Salvador is supposed to be very pretty, but I've never visited, so I defer to LB. I need to visit more before I can make my own list.
 
I'm all for adventure when I visit other countries, and generally think that Americans are pussies for not traveling more places (and "too expensive" is a bullshit excuse). The countries and descriptions that I listed are just my *perceptions*; I've never been to any of them. I am saying that I won't complain if I never get to travel to the countries on that list, but what I said could be 100% incorrect.
 
as a self-hating korean who went twenty three years before finally visiting the motherland, i have to say that you're definitely off the mark with your description. korea is not china, nor is it japan, and that's a good thing. it's a great place to go if you're interested in east asian history, art, or culture; backpacking (70% of the peninsula is covered with mountains, and it's gorgeous in the autumn); or a capital city that never sleeps (at 3 a.m. you can go shopping, karaoke-ing, drinking, eating, or to a spa). and i'm definitely talking about south korea, though i've also been to the DMZ and it's a sobering but also very interesting trip.
 
Well anonymous, I may be wrong then.
 
Lonnie,

Give that you have gone to S.Korea, I think it's time for you to take it of your list...
 
Edward,

Done.
 
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