바로가기 메뉴
본문 바로가기
주메뉴 바로가기
Comprehensive Consultation Call Center for North Korean Defectors 1577-6635
SUCCESS STORY
  • print
Nevertheless, I chose living.
NKRF Date 2022-02-18 Hit 259

Nevertheless, I chose living.

 

 

 

 



He prepared to obtain a truck driver’s license while working his part-time job.
He felt confident about truck driving since he has done it in North Korea.  
After obtaining his driver’s license, he purchased a 1-ton truck and got a job at a delivery company.
He had done all of these tasks within one month of leaving Hanawon.
He was confident that in a capitalist country like South Korea, as long as you work hard and diligently, you can become rich soon.
The assigned delivery area for Mr. Lim had a lot of villas.
Since it was his first job with not a lot of experience, he started his job not knowing that it was an area a lot of delivery drivers found to be difficult.
Most of the old villas had no elevators and had many narrow alleys that trucks cannot drive through.
It was an arduous job to climb up four or five-story buildings and deliver on foot through narrow alleys.
On a day on which a pack of bottled water or a bag of rice needed to be delivered, it was particularly hard.
After working in his assigned area, his legs would shake and it was very taxing on his whole body.
After working for 5 months at this job, one day as he was climbing a five-story building while carrying 60kg of rice, he had an accident resulting in a herniated disc and because of the accident, there had been a delay in delivery. As a result, the customer complained and he lost pay for one month.
Subsequently, he lost his health and his job.

 

 

I’m going to live and stay strong.
After surgery, as he was lying in his hospital bed, he cried.
‘Did I leave my parents and children behind for this?’ A belief that even if he had nothing, the hard work and effort would get him through was complete shattered.
After being discharged, he could not walk 100 meters and would collapse many times.
Even taking a few steps, his legs would become numb and would cause back pain.
But he wanted to live so he held onto a wall and climbed up to the sink to find something to eat and it made him very sad.
‘What is the point of living like this? Where is God? Why is this happening to me?’
That moment, he felt resentful.
Then one day, he wanted to hike a mountain that he could see from his apartment balcony to clear his mind.
He bought alcohol, even though he doesn’t drink, and left his house.
It took 4 hours to complete the hike and once he reached the destination, the clear sky and a beautiful city view unfolded before his eyes.
As he stood toward the North, he felt the earnest desire to be near his hometown.
He dearly missed his hometown he left, his parents and children’s faces and tears were streaming down his face. He had a very dark thought: ‘What is the point of living like this? Why not just end this?’
However, he thought that it would be irresponsible to die here without his loved ones around and having his family hear such sad news would be devastating and reckless.
On his way back home, he made up his mind. ‘I am going to live and stay strong.’
It took 3 years to recover his health and it was like hell.
He constantly felt frustrated but every time he started again, determined to survive.
First, he started hiking and did workouts for his herniated discs.
After working out and strengthening his back muscle every day, he was able to walk 100 meters.
Once he was able to walk a short distance, he started as a cab driver.
However, the way back from work was quite far so it would aggravate his back pain.
After thinking about job options that were not taxing physically, he enrolled himself in an AutoCAD (a program that makes architectural blueprints) learning program.
However, it was not easy to find a job just with the academy training program alone so he gave up.
After that he started a hand car wash business but it was a lot of strain on his back so he had to give it up as well.

 

 

 

13 round-trips around the earth of my first truck
Three years had passed.
He thought if hell existed, this would be it.
On the other hand, it was a precious time of letting go of his pride and reflecting on himself.
After about three years, truck driving caught his attention.
He was not confident in jobs that involved physical labor but he thought he could drive.
After many trials and errors, he decided to purchase a truck.
However, all the money he had left was 250,000 won.
With no money and no credit, it was not possible to get a loan from a bank, so he ended up taking out a loan of 25,000,000 won from a loan shark with very high interest.
For a 25,000,000 won loan, the monthly interest for the 4-year payment was 1,600,000 won.
Once he purchased a truck, he thought he could work anytime and earn money but he learned later that he needed a commercial truck number (license plate number) in order to make profits as a truck driver.
There were two ways to go.
One way was to rent a company registered number. The other way was to buy his own individual number.
Of course, he wanted to buy his own individual number, but he could not take out another loan so he had to start working with a company registered number.
In order to save money quickly, he took long route drive jobs to Busan, Mokpo, and Ulsan. 
After taking Sundays off, on Mondays, he would take placed orders and deliver them by night and the next morning he would load other shipments and be on his way. 
As he would drive days and nights, sometimes he wouldn’t be able to go home for a week and there were few days off in a month.
Still, he had to endure this hardship in order to pay back loan interest and save money.
Finally, after paying off all interest on the loan in 4 years, he scrapped the first used truck he had bought.
At the time of purchase, the truck had mileage of 250,000 km and was then driven another 800,000 km, so the truck was driven the same distance as 13 trips around the earth.
In 2007, he purchased a new truck and changed his license plate registration to his personal one.
Now he hardly drives long distances.
The way he works as a truck driver has not changed, but now he gets to sleep at home and has more time to spare to look after his health.
His goal is to see reunification and the day when he will see his children he left behind.
Until that day, he says that he will work hard and save money.