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February 14, 2007



I am not sure this is that surprising.

British merchant ships hired groups of Japanese laborers for many things, including shoveling coal (as you have read) and diving for pearls in the South Pacific.

My grandfather worked on such ships over a few years (1920s) with several other from his village. Not the most pleasant line of work... In fact when the ship docked in France he abandoned it and ended up starving for a few weeks. I remember hearing some story about buying a bag of tomatoes -- thinking they were a sweet fruit -- and then having to abandon it because he couldnt stand the taste

Shibuya Tokyo

Could also have been due to some missionary work or doing some translation, there were some Japanese that did that kind of thing.

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