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How did you end up in Japan?

by Melanie Burton

Paul Tronsgard
Teacher, 26
My coming and living here was basically an accident. I was living in Hong Kong and thinking about moving on. I was debating where to go to next and my friends said, “Come to Tokyo” so I did and I’ve been here almost a year now.

Shannon Devine
Teacher, 26
I’m from Montreal and I wanted to do something different. I’d already lived in Paris for 6 months and I like big cities. Also, I was really interested in the homeless situation here — people living in communities, not on the street as much.

Francis Michel
Engineer, 29
I came as a student and did an exchange 6 years ago for 1 year. I returned four years ago. The food was one thing that made me come back for sure — sushi, yaki niku, nabe in the winter. I love the country and to relax in onsen.

Charles Pflanz
Sportswear, 32
My father was stationed here in the 1970s for the Canadian Embassy, so that was my first time, from when I was 4-7. I was 20 when I came back with the JET program when it was just starting. Japan is a good way to escape Ottowa winters.

Robin Wedd
Physicist, 28
I came to Japan to do research. I research fundamental particle physics, so I’m essentially a data monkey. My work involves looking at and studying rare particle decay to investigate particles for the Big Bang theory.

Elaine Miles
Teacher, 23
To get perspective on life and figure out what I want to do with the rest of it — study or work. I’ve drawn the conclusion that English teaching is not the job for me and I want to further my studies in physics or art conservation.