Monday, September 24, 2007

Waiting for the Train that Never Comes

Ive been reluctant to write about my current work situation over the last few weeks.Being a bit of a "doubting Thomas" Im not apt to believe the swirling clouds of rumours and unsubstantiated speculation from the chattering masses about its imminent demise.
I do know that this months pay,(actually wages for last months lessons taught), were late.Five days late.Regular rank and file instructors were paid last Wednesday while ATs and BTs will be paid tomorrow,Tuesday.Hopefully.
Its been unsettling.Not knowing whether you will be paid for work done and whether the last months work has been nothing but voluntary.Not knowing how you will meet this months local government tax bill demands or rent for your apartment.The weight and difficult task of finding another job.The real possibility of a drop in monthly salary.Having to start again in terms of holidays and seniority allowances.
The dilemma of whether to stay and look for a job here or return home or even look to another country.I mean whats wrong with Taiwan? has typhoons,earthquakes and a language I dont understand.Much like Japan really.
Curiously though,in the midst of this apparent turmoil things appear pretty normal.
Another bunch of instructors arrived,were trained and dispatched to various schools.Situation normal.Same same.Ignore the fact that the clock was taken down in the kids room because theres no money in the office account to buy a 100 yen battery or that there are no whiteboard markers and theres no A4 paper until next month.
Roll on October 15th.Prior to that theres tomorrows pay day for titled teachers and later this month the Japanese staff payday comes round.
But I have been encouraged by a fax sent from the President that arrived the other day.It contained such memorable phrases as "The dark clouds that have been hanging heavily over us will be cast aside" and "...finally the first light of dawn can be seen".Words to cherish.

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