S08E04 Kerry Newsome

Niall Mackay00:16

Welcome to season eight of a Vietnam podcast Sharing the stories of people connected to Vietnam My name is Niall Mackay I've been living in Vietnam since 2016 and hosting this podcast since 2019 I wanted to know more about the people that live in Vietnam both locals and foreigners and share their stories Now we talked to people from around the world connected to Vietnam My guest today is a regular traveler to Vietnam and serial travel industry professional bringing groups from Australia to experience Vietnam Like many people she's been locked out of the country since start started the pandemic So she started a podcast in May, 2020 called what about Vietnam this year More about Vietnam as a holiday destination and show anyone on the fence about coming here why they should do And this episode we will discuss Carrie's experience of Vietnam Why is so appealing to so many people and the future of tourism here when it reopens the international tourists Again my guest today is Carrie Newsome Thank you for joining me

Kerry Newsome01:24

you now Thank you for that lovely intro It's great to be here

Niall Mackay01:28

and thank you very much If anyone doesn't know I was on Carrie's podcast recently so make sure that you go and check that one out We talk about the comedy scene here in in Saigon but today I want to know more about your experiences of Vietnam So when did you first come here

Kerry Newsome01:43

So I first visited in 2007 and I did I guess what they call the traditional top to bottom tours So you know try and cram as much as you can in in a 12 day tour starting in Hanoi and finishing in So that was my first introduction to the country and I was very impressed Had

Niall Mackay02:08

So I mean so that's very similar to me as well We came here much after you though 2015 I'm losing track of dates and days and years But we did the north we did the south to the north in about two weeks So share them Where did you go in on that trip

Kerry Newsome02:26

So we started in Hanoi and I think it was around about kind of late February March of 2007 So what I was mostly surprised about was how freezing cold it runs And we even went further north and we went to south park And once again I was just blown away with just how cold nobody told me that Vietnam got cold Like you know I thought this is the tropics what what's the story So that was that was a bit of an IO And from Hanoi then we went to Hawaiian of course in the center and way And I loved both of those places I guess Primarily because maybe not as hectic So as my first trip I was still a little bit shaky about crossing the road and you know things like that It was a bit overwhelming And then we we finished off in a hotel room in city So like you said we kind of did the opposite trip but saw the same places just in reverse order And yeah I was just amazed at you know why hadn't I been here before Why hadn't I come earlier But I guess Bali was my biggest draw card from Australia at that time

Niall Mackay03:46

period

Kerry Newsome03:46

of my life

Niall Mackay03:47

Well Bali is like a suburb of Australia these days right I mean it's a that's where everybody went

Kerry Newsome03:53

Well It you know it used to be and you know maybe it will come back now I don't know it's certainly has been a very popular destination for Australia but I think for Australians they didn't quite realize once they started doing direct flights from Sydney to Hershey min and Sydney to Hanoi the distancing time is about the same from those destination So it's about eight or nine hours to Bali and about same for Vietnam So that was kind of where I was coming from when I was thinking gosh this is this is Annie About the same time I'm a flight Why why don't I know about this And in fact I know very little about this because I think being an Australian to Vietnam very much been part of what you know our kind of our war history had been about So and I can remember there was a tour guide on the bus in the trip who said ah I just wanna let you know that Vietnam is a country It's not a war I just want to get that very clear right From the start and I thought Hmm I must I must write that down I might use that sometime in the future

Niall Mackay05:01

No that it's so true And it and it's something that you really only experienced I guess once you come here because it for anyone from the west whether you're Australian British Australia the U S you hear Vietnam you think war And then you come here and you're like it's just so far from that you know you go to the war remnants museum but outside of that there's very little anything visible from that And the country's just moved on so far you know but it's funny what you said about being cold and Hanoi Cause I still forget that anytime we go to Hanoi and then you look at the weather and you're like oh my God it's so cold And I had a friend that just went there last week and I said well how was her annoyed And he's like freezing 12 degrees And you know here in Saigon where it never really goes below the LT 12

Kerry Newsome05:45

Yeah And if you go even further north from Hanoi so if you go into Barbie lake or you're going to my chow or any of those places it is it is snow country in our it is that cold I can remember the first day I went to visit Bobby lake which I have to say is the most beautiful destination And he's just so pristine that lake And it's just so gorgeous but we literally got off the little putt putt boat after this five hour right on the bus And they said all the air conditioning is reverse cycle in the room so we'll turn it up to full heat And we got under the Dooner there for the first day cause the choke back to on our face with the wind in that open air boat And like we went like Heavy Judy coats on and all that sort of stuff But I was still freezing I was crying I have to write this down I have to I have to take note of these people need to know about this because you know at this time of the year and there was no one there likewise because you know there were smarter people than me obviously in the country but you don't go to these regions at that time because you will I be on your own and very few people to look up to you and be you'll you know freeze face today Anyway it was worth it

Niall Mackay07:09

Yeah I mean Sappa is just beautiful I want to ask you more about that in a second but one thing that you mentioned there and it just really rings with me is you know we came here similar for you short trip you were here 12 days we were here 14 something like that and just fell in love with the place which is just a reoccurring theme for so so many people what was it for you then that you came here 2007 12 day trip And you've been coming back ever since

Kerry Newsome07:39

Yeah well funny I think I think it was the people that I met in particular I met an Australian girl who she joined the tour about halfway through enhanced and I don't know her and I just clicked and she was running a instill is running a charity for sponsorships for the education of young girls And You know because I came from a marketing background because I'd been in the travel industry I was a little bit in that kind of transition stage and thinking you know that what next kind of question so I was so impressed by the people and I could see the potential hospitality at that stage was very much on a growth trajectory they were looking for quality people that had industry experience So I just think it was the PayPal mainly I I can see yearning for you know we we know we need education we know we need extra advice We want to do this right We want to connect with the right people So she introduced me to a lot of people And from that it just kind of snowballed

Niall Mackay08:58

Awesome And what have you seen you It's such a massive change there I mean I'm just thinking back I came here 2016 for the first time And the change in six years has has just been exponential And it's something we've touched on a lot on this podcast about the growth of Vietnam and how quickly it moves So coming here in 2007 I mean Sappa I've not been back since I went in 2016 and I actually don't think I want to go back because I think it would have changed so much from the experience that I had And we can talk a little bit about the positives and the negatives of tourism and the expansion of tourism Cause there's definitely both So what was it like though back in 2007 in terms of tourism how was it developed How was it how did you experience it

Kerry Newsome09:45

Well I think the best example I can draw for you is Horian and if you know Há»™i An at all you'd be aware that there's the coupon river that kind of runs through the middle And you know that's where you see all the beautiful lanterns and you know they had that kind of Twilight hour at night where they take people out And it's just absolutely beautiful When I came in 2007 the other side of the tube on river there was no There was no there was no restaurants There was no night markets There was you know a little shack here and there there was nothing it was just absolutely nothing And I didn't come back between 2007 I didn't really come back till 2013 So you know that that amount of time that whole area So that was my biggest gobsmacked When I came back was that they had developed the whole other side that had you know as you say good and bad you know it had commercialized but you know in 2013 it was still nice to see the vibrancy You could tell people were starting to to grow the tourism The Vietnam national tourism board was starting I guess be more well-known and be more outspoken in the world and and started to market to the world So you know this little shanty place this very you know Shanti place And my friend Linda said now let's let's go for a walk through the old town and I'll actually show you the difference So where there's all those shuttered shop houses they were all kind of shot shot shot closed and now they were all open And you know there was there was just this new energy you could you could feel the pulse It was just definitely vibrating And that was probably the most significant comparison I can draw for you that So when people do go to Hawaii and maybe after they listen into this show like can kind of stand on one side of the river and go That's all I didn't even exist at one point and not that long ago So yeah I mean it's hard to notice it in a big city like ho Chi Minh city obviously is developed 10 noise obviously developed but it's so big You can't kind of track it all You just can see lots of cranes You can see lots of hotels going up and all that sort of thing but to try and give a stark contrast on hope That's a good example

Niall Mackay12:22

No no that's a great example You really because it's actually funny So my parents visited here five years ago Like what today Like it's coming up on my Facebook memories and five years ago today we were in Hawaii and it came up this morning and we were on the other side of the river We went for on the sides there We went to the night markets And so I it's interesting Cause you don't think about it when you're there that that didn't exist But that's really interesting that you have seen that when it wasn't there And then even in Saigon you just see things that weren't there'll be four and you're like wow I mean so we've just this is how fast things change You know Adrian I've just had COVID and we've been at home for about just over a week and just being home for a week When we first went out on the bike and we were driving around and we're like whoa where did that come from Whoa that building's gone up in a week Like things had changed so quickly here So the difference between you know there's a question we've talked about in the asked before is people who've been here for 10, 20, 30 years The difference must be crazy So to even come from 2007 have you been back to Sappa since then

Kerry Newsome13:31

yes I did a very short stay I actually took my husband the next time and I think I think the difference was and I want to be careful how I say this because you you you mentioned about the positives and the negatives of tourism And I guess the first time I did see it I I didn't see the commercialization like what that would actually look like in in Sapa But when I did see it in 2000 I think it was 2015 I rent I was quite shocked because I explain this to my husband saying oh it's this you know this this beautiful hillside Highlander kind of area There's so many beautiful locals you'll get a real insight to some of the minority groups it's you know and then we sorta got there and the township had really ramped up its commercial Attitude I guess and we're jumping on the tourists as they were getting off the buses and selling them trinkets and and you know my husband said so these are the miners pretty gross you were talking about And I said well yes and no And you know they're they're trying to earn a living and obviously this is a way for them to do it but it is not representative of the whole area So now when I talk to people about soccer or I talk about maybe going a little bit further out of you know just that very small tourist area that people take the tours And when you get off the beaten track yes That that is still there And those minorities still live as they have done for hundreds of years And I think that's where the beauty still lies but yeah Good and bad is your side

Niall Mackay15:20

Well it's the challenge of tourism worldwide And even as a tourist myself you know even when I go visit places like I remember we went to the Philippines before a lot of times before the pandemic and you've got to quote unquote secret beach and then in secret there's like a line of people waiting to get in and there's people everywhere And so you see the negatives of tourism then you're like but I'm contributing to this Like all of this waste all of this construction like I'm contributing I want to see it And so the thing about Sappa that I think is really stocked So that's really interesting because useful obviously a massive change between 2007 and 2015 I think you said I went into those in 15 and I loved it And I'm like this is a beautiful it's amazing But you could see a massive ugly hotel being built on a wasn't finished I think it is now but it should be now being built on the side of the hill I think you've probably heard about the statue of Liberty that they built Did you hear about this And they had so funny they had to rip it down And this was this was an example of how things work here that they were they were although the immediately to take it down And they said well we need to bring the staff from Hanoi We need to bring the construction people from Hanoi to tear it down But we can't do that right now because of the pandemic and they can't travel and lockdown and they're like no you need to take it down by tomorrow Yeah but we can no like no I don't know what the timescale was that they they brought it down But that's just an example of things going wrong here but so my point is though that you saw the chain started from 2007 to 2015 I went in 2015 and loved it But now I'm reluctant to go back Cause I think I would know is these can of horrible changes and this is the problem with tourism right Because it brings so many benefits You don't want to you don't want to talk talk it down because like you're talking about these hill tribes or these local people it's bringing them money it's bringing them jobs but then you're going to have I always find it difficult because then you're like oh well it's not as good as it used to be You know And I've had this thing before where I'm like oh we should come to Vietnam 20 years ago to experience it And this is a question I used to ask at the end of the podcast And as we discussed that I realized that Horrible opinion to have because coming here 20 years ago there was more poverty that people had less things So so I'm like oh yeah I wish I could have come and had a more authentic experience 20 years ago but that's a totally selfish point of view because the development for the people make such a difference So where do you see Vietnam on that kind of tourism kind of timeline Because it obviously started off way behind countries like Bali and Thailand which are very developed tourism We talked about as we help people just associate Vietnam with the war So where do you see Vietnam note in terms of

Kerry Newsome18:13

Well it's it's a really interesting question because like every country I think pre COVID You know we're talking 19 and 20 you know it's it's hard to compare compare to what tourism is going to look like in you know 22 And beyond that two years has changed for nearly every country in the world Their ability to forecast their ability to plan around numbers experiences tours et cetera And Vietnam is no different I mean Vietnam was at its peak before the pandemic It was bringing in 18 million Tourists where previous years you know it had been sort of growing at a random bat you know 10 or 12% but I can remember back in you know the area that we were talking about around that 2007 you were you were considered a real pioneer to be going to Vietnam Wow How brave you to go to Vietnam Like you know it was a real adventure tourism you know and I was staying in these absolutely gorgeous boutique hotels Whereas the adventure here like Holly that bringing me flowers and I'm having fresh fruit balls And you know I like this is this is unbelievable I just cannot I cannot believe it So in talking about where to from from here I think I think it's going to take a little while for Vietnam to rebuild and that will be in its hospitality industry in particular because you know that industry just got smashed you know so a lot of the hotels lost a lot of their their really great staff and that talent pool literally had to go home go back to some of their ability to and to the outer parts of Vietnam just to You know see it out to just endure it so that they could you know try and manage with whatever savings they had Some hotels were able when the bans were lifted and to allow the Vietnamese tourists So the local tourists to travel I would you know be able to keep their staff on for that But there was some hotels that were just totally geared to the foreign tourist and you know they got hit the worst and you know the recovery from that as I hear now as we're sitting in our Over a week away from opening up again just the scramble to get staff back on board to get everyone trained up again to get procedures in place They now got to gear themselves for extra levels of sanitization They've got to keep the hotels in a way that they you know they probably a lot of them would have but I think about the homestays I mean there was something like 380 homestays alone in Hawaii And I actually had to stop giving out licenses to homestays Cause there was just too many of them now where are they going to go And how are they going to manage in the future People love them because they got to stay with a family In a lot of cases some of them were they're like mini boutique hotels but you know the family run operations way You stayed with the family and one of their bedrooms you've got very cheap accommodation but would the sanitation level be up there for COVID now Probably not Would they have enough English skills to navigate themselves around that now Who knows so there's Going on to get back up there to that 18 million I mean foreign tourism from a perspective was about kind of 10 or 11% So whilst people you know say ah you know tourism is kind of everything to Vietnam and whatever it actually isn't you know foreign tourism is a big part but you know with 96 million I think you know that's a fair few bodies to move around the country in its own realm And as you you know we talked before about tit you know how crazy there was no social distancing going on then And you know then wearing masks for Vietnamese That's nothing they'd been during that You know trillions of years like it's it's not a big deal but for the foreign tourist and for the health authorities and for the Vietnamese government to manage this on a CDC and who level scale so that they win the confidence of the traveler Cause I think this is actually what the big thing is now is this is the traveler going to feel confident coming to Vietnam when you know they had such a bad cases in 21 and when everyone was kind of coming out the other side So I think there and I know lots of people in the industry as you as you would guess and everyone is working very very hard behind the scenes all your airlines or airports cause there's quite a few small airports you'd be aware of around the country So you know gaining staff back on for those you know getting tour guides back you know the ones that really knew their way around could speak multiple languages getting them back in bug and as I said getting sanitization products into the hotels getting them trained on them you know it's a big job and there's there's gonna be some big changes but I'm very confident that Vietnam will bounce back because it's just that resilience It it just has the ability to turn on a dime and come back with better places some better experiences some more thoughtful experiences some more diverse experiences So you know I think once again it's going to be discovery to a nail and can't wait to get

Niall Mackay24:28

Yeah I mean it's like one of the things you've mentioned that you have eaten them is definitely resilient And as we mentioned already things happen quickly heal sometimes for good sometimes for bad But in this case it will it will probably be good that they would come back What if I hadn't thought about the scale of what a mammoth task that is that you've just described to turn that back on because you are right And so being here for six years we witnessed that peak tourism of Vietnam The last couple of years before the pandemic you know we were living here and then we were shocked by the amount of our friends and people that we knew that were coming here for a holiday You know people we hadn't maybe spoken to for years but you know still connected on Facebook and it's like oh you're going to be in Vietnam Let's catch up You know from my wife's side on my side And we we in that last year before the pandemic we saw so many friends and it was incredible just to see these people that we hadn't seen for years but you could see that that was part of this tourism boom but it's interesting what you see as well Cause I think that's almost a very Western centric point of view that many people have that they think these Poor quote unquote countries in Southeast Asia I'll just totally rely on tourism and can never survive without tourists And they're going to fall to pieces without tourists but actually I mean there's like you mentioned those 96 million people year massive export and manufacturing Tourism is a big big part of it And Vietnam has had to sacrifice that industry almost almost entirely well foreign tourism obviously anyway but the countries still can survive without it W what I find interesting as well You're talking about how just having to bring back all this talent even before the pandemic I had read this article about how Arby's now similar to Thailand massive five-star tourism industry and you see that in Phu Quoc especially in in anywhere big five-star hotels they need talented chefs And there is an absolute this is things you don't really think about They do There's a death of trained five star results chefs and you think about it Most people that probably work in kitchens here have land from their parents and grandparents and that's amazing but when it comes to you know working in a five-star kitchen so I think I read this was again pre pandemic The they needed something like 10,000 kitchen staff trained kitchen staff and you know didn't have enough And I know that people are taking strides strides to To fill that but it just shows you how much it needs It's not as easy for someone like you booking trips to be like yeah All right sweet everyone We're going back to Vietnam Let's go home It's not going to be that simple too How do you see that going forward for people like yourself People booking tools is are going to be disappointed People coming here and then realizing that it's not what they expected or anyone If we're watching on YouTube you can see Carrie's face If you're listening Carrie can explain what that Facebook's Sheetz has made

Kerry Newsome27:32

Well like you know I'm kind of the girl that likes to keep things real And in the sense that you know I don't want I want I want people to go there with very managed expectations because just how I've described the ramp up you know you don't kind of open the gates on the 15th of March and go Woohoo Everybody's up to spade Everybody's got got got their goods together and it's all going to run perfectly That would be just an unrealistic expectation I mean we're still waiting for the immigration site to change the visa status So we even know and it's the 7th of March And yet I know people really who love Vietnam and can't wait to get back They've already booked their flights without even saying visa status will be So you know there's going to be diehards like me and people maybe who follow my podcast or Facebook pages or blah blah blah That will go I don't care what it's going to look like I want to get back there and support the country They've obviously got friends and people I want to catch up again and you know they want to be part of the reboot And I think you know there is going to be a lot of people that do come back that want to build that back up to a healthy sustainable level because as you described it also in 2019 it was going a bit crazy Like there were buses that were parked out of Hawaiian They couldn't actually they stopped letting them into the streets because they would just they just couldn't fit They couldn't handle the people their luggage the whole whole Schmale And you know they had to push them to an out and then they had to kind of run them in little golf carts you know into the town In in small kind of acceptable levels So the town could cope So some way between that and you know 2007 would be a great happy medium And I think I think from a provincial level as well they trying to look at the the areas in a in a very holistic way a much more sustainable way I mean I was talking to a resort a wellness resort and one of the things that they did during the pandemic is they planted 2000 trees So you know you said my staff wouldn't have had time to do No Adam out of the pandemic doing something that's positive but something for the future you know we kind of came up with activities like this to you know to be part of that regeneration And I think you know when you asked me you know what am I going to say to people you know come to Vietnam of course I'm going to say come to Vietnam but do your homework you know and don't read there's so many and I'm sure you're seeing this as well If you read all the different news They all take a spin on the same story Like just change the headline They mix a few words in the first few paragraphs and they spin a different version of it Hopefully it's the eye catching one that you know people will go all Gosh I read that about you know Vietnam art Did you say that Oh no I read that you know Vietnam is actually going very positive but it depends on who's spinning the same piece of information And I think I'm getting quality information Working with travel agents that you can trust to her upper right As you know people that have been and had a lot to do in the country I think will be a premium in the future because you do you want to cut through all the nonsense You want to cut through the crap and you want to get to what is the real deal And you know what I mean to Vietnam has some caveats and we'll have some on entry you know around traveling Durance you know have you ever had to show your travel insurance when you've gone to an immigration counter to say that you've got travel insurance that covers you for COVID for $50,000 So you know how are they going to want to see that you know how has immigration decided on a worldwide scale that yeah that's that looks bright and you know I've got no idea So we're still waiting for those procedures The airlines are still waiting for those procedures the airports the people that run the airports their staff you know so there's going to be a wee wee little time There are a few you know chinks in the armor ironed out a few bugs you know I think it'll smooth out in a very short amount of time when they realized it's just a bit unrealistic and you know by you know I'm not going to track it It should be all streamlined That's my hope

Niall Mackay32:48

Well it's funny what you said there because we literally had this conversation last night So as you said it's March 7th as we're talking this will this will go out next week and the the ball does a Jew to open on March 15th but what you said and we've had this conflict we had this conversation yet And this again is a classic thing in Vietnam Is decisions get made without much communication that I can see anyway or hear about or read about as to how things will happen And so we'll be like okay so ball does our opening to tourism on March 15th and what you said there Exactly This is the conversation we had last night with someone else was but visas on open yet So tourism is going to open but nobody can get a visa So what does that mean on March 15th visa suddenly open and you probably well know as we have in Vietnam it could be March 14th at 6:00 PM at night a decree will come home saying tourism's not opening yet It's going to happen on the 1st of April Then the 1st of April will be the 15th of April So it's really really difficult to know exactly what's going to happen And then that just makes it so difficult for everything like you're seeing What did the airlines do What the immigration do How did what's the process for Showing your travel your tourism like this So so much that needs to happen before we can just welcome tourism back but it does seem to be on the right path So hopefully it will come back And the other thing you touched upon and I wanted to ask you as well I would hope so so much And I'm employed by what you said You said there but I hope that can be applied more across the board is to have more sustainable tourism because it's been really obvious here with Vietnam Obviously a country that's come out of war come out of poverty People want to make money And it's been like a tourism has been a bit of a gold rush there's not been much full thought going in going into a lot of developments who are I mean have you probably been to Meunier NTA They've pretty much destroyed the beach there because they've just right up onto the beach I've been down here was I was recently can remember I never was somewhere else They concretely right up to the beach So now it's all just Rudy And then what you mentioned about hi Hyannis I remained reminded me about these you've probably heard about the $0 Chinese tourists where they come and stay in like a giant Chinese owned resort They spend all the money basically paying the Chinese resort and almost come to Hawaiian and spend $0 They spend all on the on the Chinese companies So what do you see going forward Do you think Vietnam will take this pause this opportunity to go okay Let's do tourism battle or will it just go back to a gold rush and it's just going to be built They would they would they would let's not think about anything else We need to make money as quickly as we can

Kerry Newsome35:38

Well it was funny I was talking to a friend he lives in Denang and he said all the must be coming back on He's an Aussie

he said must be coming back on the bills that looked like that they were gonna kind of fall over or just be kind of monuments on the sand they're all they've all come to life again So tourism must be back on So like I'd like to think that they will be a new attitude moving forward There's certainly a lot of talk about it and there's a lot more or what I think expertise in the industry Now I think what I'm seeing is a lot more professionals that are giving advice and that advice is being taken on board So there's lots of steering groups and steering committees that have got a very good mix of talent you know to talk about things like sustainability and the environment and and how to move forward Long-term so I'd like to think Yes I think it's definitely and I think COVID spores that for most most countries You know for most people trying to think if they want to get the traveler back and get the traveler back in tip top speed They're going to have to make sure that they can tick all the boxes for that traveler So that traveler comes with confidence I think one thing I will notice and I'll say here is

Vietnam is also experiencing a lot of tourists in that very mature market and I'll sign it or because you don't speak for myself So you know in in that you know the fifties the sixties the seventies and I think with COVID that market might be a little bit more careful and maybe a little bit more considerate around traveling to Vietnam until thing again But you know because Vietnam has an I travel alone 90% of the time in Vietnam you know it's very safe I've always stayed in you know very nice accommodations and you can get great value for accommodation in Vietnam versus you know many other countries Getting around was easy You know there was you know it was just perfect for that market but because of COVID and making sure that everyone's got that COVID protection at whatever level that is I don't think they're going to be running through the things that will pay more the heart and the heartier that will come first the diehards second maybe maybe close first and I think you know

I'd like like to think that you know what I'm trying to do with this podcast of mine is to to keep people informed about where and what Vietnam is going to look like moving forward in various places

Niall Mackay38:33

Yeah I hope so too I know I'm just thinking when was the last time that you were in Vietnam

Kerry Newsome38:40

So you and I I think we discovered we nearly cross paths because I left on the 19th of March, 2020 and I wasn't due to come back until the 29th And I think I made it to you I was in denial I was like oh you know endemic pandemic goal If they call this a pen and mic that'll be that's just it But my son was ringing me saying mom I think you really need to come home My husband was saying look you know the news over this side of the world isn't looking good We don't want to shut you out of the country And I'm thinking well the worst thing could happen is I could get stuck in Vietnam That's not so bad

Niall Mackay39:20

no

Kerry Newsome39:21

but Yeah I had to get out had to come home And I think I mean there was people sorry to add this but I was remembering about this girl and she worked for Intrepid and she was a tour guide and she was a Vietnamese Australian and she was literally running to get her seat on the plane because it was packed because it was one of the few planes that were coming back into Australia and she wanted to get home and get to her family et cetera Cause you know the tour company had said we don't know when we'll need you back So go home

Niall Mackay39:57

Yeah I mean if you go back and you listen to all story which we shared on a podcast way back in season three I mean we nearly got stranded in Australia because we were fleeing back from New Zealand and came through Australia And when we landed in Vietnam it took one look at our passports which was American and British And at that point they weren't allowed in the country and they were like you need to get back on the plane And we were like we don't live in Australia We live here Like our dog is here Our life is here We live here and we managed to get back in thankfully but I've been stuck here ever since But the reason I was asking I mean even in those two years since you've been here Wait til you see psycho and the changes I mean we have a bridge No that's about to open That goes right into the CBD They've just opened up the waterfront at the river yeah So you you'll you'll be amazed You'll be amazed So what where are

Kerry Newsome40:45

wait I can't wait