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 A Tourist's Blog About The Traffic Girls - "Don't take pictures of traffic girls!"

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PostSubject: A Tourist's Blog About The Traffic Girls - "Don't take pictures of traffic girls!"   Sun Mar 14, 2010 1:14 am

    After all, with no cars in sight, what for?
    But for all that, on some of the intersections we were treated to an incredible sight of so-called traffic girls. They belonged to police, as far as I understood. Standing in the designated circle in the middle of her intersection, each one was immaculately dressed in sky-blue uniform, with blouse underneath, gloves, socks and cap in white, and tie and shoes of black. In the right hand she held red-and-white baton, and a whistle in her left, tools to direct non-existent traffic of North Korean capital. They all stood as upright as a lamppost and constantly moved in rigid, but obviously well-rehearsed movements, exerting an unquestionable authority over an odd stray vehicle every once in a long while. Everybody stared as transfixed.
    From what we could see from the bus, they were all exceptionally pretty.

    Mrs. Lee caught our interest. I would assume that every western visitor reacted the same way at the first sight of those girls, so she might have even expected it. She said:
    "They are specially chosen by their beauty and all of them must be at least 1.63 m tall."
    It was obvious they were the pride of the city, even if real need for them was not that obvious. But even if the only function they really served was to put some beauty on the face of Pyongyang, their presence in the streets was fully vindicated. Everyone tried to catch them with their cameras. And everyone noticed that. Both Mrs.Lee and Simon warned us:
    "You may not take pictures of police and military!"

    // later .... //

    And then it was time to go. Back in the bus, back each one of us in their seat, we were again hungrily looking at Pyongyang streets. And inevitably, there were more of those beautiful traffic girls. Cameras went on clicking.

    "Don't take pictures of traffic girls!" Mr Lee warned again. Mrs Lee chimed with a warning of her own, too. Then Simon said:

    "Don't take pictures of traffic girls now. You'll later have a chance."

    "We'll be able to take pictures of traffic girls?" Mathew, who was sitting behind me, asked not quite believing what he had just heard, same as probably the rest of us.

    But Simon confirmed:

    "Yes, you'll be able to take pictures later. So don't do it now."

    We had no reason as yet not to take him up on his word. And he certainly had no reason not to keep it. So the clicking stopped. Except that quite a few of us had already had a picture or two anyway.

    // //

    Our next stop was a souvenir shop. Somewhere downtown, right at the corner of another large street intersection, it was a place where we were being given an opportunity to shop for some local souvenirs and keepsakes. However, the thing that really made this spot unique was the fact that sparse traffic on this very intersection was regulated by one of those gorgeous traffic girls. Simon and our Korean guides were making good on their promise. We could freely take pictures of the girls and no one was going to stop us.

    Nobody went into the shop. Everyone jockeyed for the best camera position and much as it was fun to take pictures of the traffic girl, it was almost as much fun to watch the fourteen of us having fun of it. She was every bit as beautiful as any of them looked from the bus. Only, this one was better as we were given a free hand. Since traffic in Pyongyang, as obvious to any of us by now, was virtually non-existent, at least the kind of traffic as we knew it, even on four-laners as this one, we could freely go out on the carriageway, without any fear of being mashed flat as a fritter by a rolling vehicle. There were simply hardly any. Even pedestrians were just a few. But the girl was there, in full swing, performing her duty as expected of her, sternly directing any moving thing from any direction.

    We were clearly all fascinated with her performance and she was apparently oblivious of our presence. Her movements were well-rehearsed and carefully choreographed, with a clear intention to convey authority over traffic participants. Locals hardly paid any attention to her, except for the minimum they had to, when she was allowing or disallowing them to cross the street. They showed much more interest in us, even if they pretended they didn't. On the face of it, those who found ourselves on our side of the street accorded us the same treatment as nearby trees and lamp-posts. But those on the other sides openly stared our way.

    And then we were treated to an unexpected bonus. Out of somewhere another traffic girl materialised and in marching step trotted along to the white circle at the intersection, presently starting the ceremony of the shift change. The ceremony was brief, but elaborate and when it finished, the first girl was relieved of her duty, whereas the second one took over.

    The first one marched right to our pavement and once she steeped on it, she eased her pace and went off in a normal walking fashion.

    The girls were brilliant. If any of them were put on any congested intersection in the world, they would be instant celebrities, I am sure of that. Here I had no idea how much locals were aware of their charms and appeal. Particularly to us foreigners. We just couldn't take our eyes off of them.
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PostSubject: Re: A Tourist's Blog About The Traffic Girls - "Don't take pictures of traffic girls!"   Tue Apr 06, 2010 6:14 pm

lol - "don't take pictures of traffic girls"..... "don't take pictures of traffic girls" ..... "don't take pictures of traffic girls" ..... "OK, now take pictures of traffic girls!"
They are so screwed up.
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PostSubject: Re: A Tourist's Blog About The Traffic Girls - "Don't take pictures of traffic girls!"   Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:29 am

Don't take their picture - except for the thousands of pictures of them on the internet.
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A Tourist's Blog About The Traffic Girls - "Don't take pictures of traffic girls!"
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