Like everything in this country, the move is shrouded in mystery. But the people are already being groomed for a phased transition, supporting the widespread belief that the leader, Kim Jong-il, will use Tuesday's Workers' party assembly to signal he has chosen his youngest son to succeed him. One Pyongyang student says there is already a song dedicated to the heir apparent.
"We were told at university that Kim Jong-un is very intelligent, that he has a military background, and that he is very young," added the young woman, who asked to remain anonymous.
Many others seem to know his name, even though there is a reluctance to discuss the matter – at least with foreigners.
His father's gradual rise was equally well-veiled for many years, sealed only at the party's 1980 gathering: its last until this year. This meeting could last anywhere between three days and almost three weeks, to judge from previous events.
Seoul-based Yonhap news agency has also reported that the North may be preparing a record military parade, citing South Korean government sources. As many as 10,000 soldiers may march alongside missiles and armoured vehicles to mark the party's assembly or its 65th anniversary next month.
An opportunity for real diplomacy with Pyongyang? Let's hope so. Kim Jong-un is younger than I am, and as Premier of North Korea, well, who knows? There would have to be tremendous pressure from the hard-liners in the country to continue to bluster but...well, there's always a chance that the son is not the father.
We'll see how this works out. Hillary Clinton and the State Department just cleared their calendars, I'm thinking.