Resident weirdo

I’ve been putting in the hard yards to secure the reputation of being the resident weirdo at work.

There’s a catch-up on Microsoft Teams each week called Quarantini, which is a hangover from COVID-19 lockdowns. I usually manage to say something each week that leaves people uncertain about what to say next.

For example, someone complained about getting into trouble for taking a photo at a NSW port facility because it was against the rules. So I piped up with: “Ooooh, same thing happened to me once when I was visiting Silverwater Jail! I took a photo of a flock of ibis birds in the trees because I thought ‘jailbirds’ were funny and the prison guards went nuts at me.”

Cue awkward silence.

We also have a weekly department catch-up on Microsoft Teams called Mindset Monday and everyone thinks I’m a bit troppo during that too because I’ve spent the last few weeks frothing with excitement about a ‘Focus on India’ trade event being held to introduce NSW tourism businesses to Indian travel agents.

I went totally hyper ra-ra about India being the ‘new China’ and begged for permission put together a special edition of my Insights newsletter to celebrate the event.

Yep, I volunteered to add to my already heavy workload.

The newsletter was filled with lots of exciting stats on the Indian market, with photos and a highlights video.

It started like this:

Destination NSW hosted a Focus On India trade event from 12-17 February 2022 that gave 32 NSW tourism suppliers the opportunity to meet with 38 key agents from India.

India holds huge promise as a visitor market for NSW. Not only is projected to become the world’s most populous country in April 2023, with over 1.4 billion people, but Indians are the most adventurous travellers in the Asia Pacific region.   

Research released last year by online travel company via its APAC Travel Confidence Index revealed that India is the most confident country when it comes to travel, with 86 per cent of those surveyed intending to travel in the next 12 months. 

That confidence is reflected in international travel data for 2022 released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). It revealed India was the fourth biggest market for visitors to Australia in 2022, with the arrivals from India (303,000) having the strongest recovery, reaching 76 per cent of its pre-pandemic level from 2019. 

India is a priority market for Destination NSW. Prior to the pandemic, it was the fastest growing segment to NSW, with Indian travellers spending an estimated $444 million in the year ending December 2019. 

B2B writing gives me such a buzz. Who am I and what have I done with Alana the celebrity gossip queen?

But I think my colleagues are slowly getting used to me. At least I hope they are, as they are a nice bunch.

Oh and not every staff catch up is virtual. The office is currently festooned with rainbow streamers and flags and we got together yesterday to take crazy group selfies dressed up in feather boas and coloured glasses for Sydney WorldPride, then we ate rainbow cake for afternoon tea.


Song of the day: Radiohead “Creep”

6 thoughts on “Resident weirdo

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      1. I didn’t either – I never would’ve imagined it when we got them nearly four years ago. But things go wrong and it can cost hundreds. And the medications etc are the same ones they give dogs. But much loved pets so we do it.

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