I have been in inaka-cho for just over one year now, and I think it was time well spent. Because of all the difficulties, I learned some things about myself and, I think, deepened my faith and perseverance. I have another year on contract, but I am starting to wonder about what I'll be doing next year at this time. Should I stay a third year? Or shall I move on?
And if I decide to move on, how shall I proceed? Whether I stay in Japan or go back to the US, I would like a job that would allow me to build some professional skills and learn something new. However, depending on the economy I may not have much choice. In that case, if it looks like I face only the unskilled labor market, it might be just as well to get a working holiday visa for Australia or New Zealand and find the same kind of work there.
There's also grad school, an MBA, law school, art school, traveling, or (*mumbling*) eikaiwa. Lots to think about!