The carpet’s colours cast me back. To Primary School No. 4 and Kim Jong-Il pulling me into our hideout behind the boxwood hedge. Somehow he’d gotten hold of two candies. Not Korean candy, but something entirely forbidden: Japanese candy. Morinaga Chewlets. Silky pineapple for him, sweet strawberry for me. I was so excited, I swallowed mine immediately. I began to cry. Jong-Il boldly took his candy out of his mouth, bit half off, stuffed it into my mouth, and punched my head.
He changed, yes. But when I bowed, longest and deepest, it was to that six-year-old boy, my friend.