Submit your own Great Escape


James Vincent

Q1. Where did you move to and when?

I moved to Tokyo in 2002

Q2. How long did you work in Thailand?

2 years

Q3. What was your main reason for moving?

I was sitting having a beer and I looked down the bar and had a vision of what would become of me. There were 5 or 6 guys sitting in a line in ascending age order from me to the last guy who was about 70 years old. I was 28.

Q4. What are the advantages of working where you are now compared to Thailand?

Aside from earning hard currency, status. In Japan you are simply another member of the workforce and so are afforded the same rights as everybody else.

Q5. What do you miss about life in Thailand?

Weekend breaks to Ko Samet.

Q6. Would you advise a new teacher to seek work in Thailand or where you are now?

I don't think one is better than the other for a new teacher. If you are looking for a cultural experience then both countries have a lot to offer. If you are seeking a career as a TEFL teacher I don't think it matters where you go in Asia. You will always face problems and obstructions. So, the place you arrive at matters less than your determination to do a good job.

Q7. Any plans to return to Thailand one day?

To work, no.

Q8. Anything else you'd like to add?

You really just have to go with the flow in Asia. Whether we like it or not TEFL is very much a business where we as teachers deliver a product. And to that end customers have to be provided with what they want (which is not necessarily what they need).

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