• Colorado Springs, Colo.

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Even as an economist it happened to me: I got stuck in Japan during a serious endaka (high-yen) recession. I managed to scrape by teaching, but when work came to the end, I made the terrible and serious mistake of not leaving Japan. I went through terrible stress and somehow found a job at a firm for a short while. When that came to an end, though, I got the heck out of Japan. I was given one month’s notice, but had an airline ticket before my last day of work.

And why not? There are many great opportunities available throughout Asia. Most English teachers now go to China or Korea. I also heard that anyone with a degree and a heartbeat gets a job in Taiwan. The money is a little less, but it’s sure worth it because these jobs are much easier to get and the cost of living is much less than in Japan.

I know that we foreigners somehow have a love for Japan, but it is very important to use your head and make a plan for leaving Japan. If you are homeless or cannot get an airline ticket to another country, then just call or visit your consulate or embassy. Often there are ways that people in your home country, such as family and friends, can put money together for an airline ticket to economic safety. And don’t forget to pray.

michael terry

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