Assuming the day that you are retiring finally comes. Have you ever thought about things that you can do once you are retired? Would you sit around the typical restaurants every morning and drink Kopi-O with a few friends, chit-chatting until lunch time when you go home have a simple lunch by your wife and then continue with your Kopi-O session in the afternoon? At night, it’s an even simpler dinner, eating whatever is left from the lunch? There are some who’s doing this today, in Malaysia. I seriously do not think I will be doing such a thing when I am older. Ok, perhaps a day or two but definitely not for weeks, months and years until they day I bid farewell. It’s just so boring and unproductive!
In Japan, a quarter of the population are above 65 years old. Majority of them would live another 15 years easily which meant that whatever money they have would have to be sufficient to last them for quite a long time. If they stay in the country side, I think it should not much of an issue. 3,346 decided however to spend some of their time here, at least a huge portion of their retirement here. Sometimes you do wonder, when they really do move here, what can they do? Even the language might be a barrier! Well, fyi, besides these MM2H applicants, there has always been a sizeable Japanese expats here for a very long time.
When they are here, instead of the few friends they have back in their home, they suddenly have hundreds of new friends whom they meet on a regular basis and as usual, that camaraderie spirit is always highest when you are overseas. When I was in UK, a Malaysian is a Malaysian only, nothing else. That I think is the feeling that these Japanese MM2H participants had when they moved here. So much so that this was one comment. ‘I am much busier in Malaysia than in Japan. When I was in Japan, I used to pass time at home quietly sipping tea. Whereas here I am involved in multiple activities. I am having the time of my life here’, says Mr Aoyama, who is in his early 60s, during a singing session.
See the similarity with Malaysians? Instead of sipping Kopi-O, they were sipping green tea in Japan. Yes, quietly too. I think this is true not just for the Japanese but also for the Chinese from China, the Koreans from Korea and many more other nationalities who have chosen Malaysia as their second home, at least for 10 years or more. The cost of living, the quality of healthcare and the huge groups of friends here meant that the pull would always be there. I think MM2H is a very good programme. An article about these Japanese MM2H participants can be accessed here: http://www.eastasiaforum.org/2014/09/03/japans-elderly-in-malaysia-like-shooting-stars-in-the-twilight/
written on 7th Sept 2014
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