In 2005, I moved to London to start a new job. Because the relocation was temporary, I was still paid in dollars. And because it took nearly two dollars to buy one pound, I was broke.

I was used to living close to the financial edge — I was a journalist sitting on a mountain of student-loan debt from business school, and I did not have an income-based repayment plan. But, even though the Economist was paying for my flat, London just about pushed me over the edge of the abyss.