Woman claims work of­fer a pub­lic­ity stunt

The Arran Banner - - News -

A woman who trav­elled quar­ter of the way round the world from Ma­cau to Ar­ran claimed an of­fer of work and ac­com­mo­da­tion was a pub­lic­ity stunt.

The woman, who said she would pre­fer not to be iden­ti­fied, had ex­changed emails with James Clark, the pro­pri­etor of the Balmichael Cen­tre on the String road and claimed that she had an of­fer of free ac­com­mo­da­tion in ex­change for work.

Un­usual story

Just half an hour be­fore that, Mr Clark had come to the Ar­ran Ban­ner of­fice and told an un­usual story.

Mr Clark said that the woman had turned up, un­in­vited, on his doorstep on Mon­day af­ter­noon hav­ing flown from Ma­cau, a Chi­nese spe­cial ad­min­is­tra­tive area, near Hong Kong, in the Far East.

Mr Clark said the woman had pre­vi­ously con­tacted him via email on a site de­signed for gap-year work­ers called work­away.info.

He said: ‘The cen­tre has a host­ing ac­count on work­away. Peo­ple swap a bit of work each day in ex­change for free ac­com­mo­da­tion – we get hun­dreds of in­quiries.

‘Re­cently we ac­com­mo­dated two Amer­i­cans.

‘A woman had con­tacted us mul­ti­ple times from Ma­cau and ex­pressed an in­ter­est in com­ing.

‘We al­ways back­ground check peo­ple if pos­si­ble and I had not said this woman could come.

‘She turned up unan­nounced on Mon­day. I tried sit­ting down with her and hav­ing a con­ver­sa­tion and asked if I could help.

‘Al­though she was calm, she be­came terse and started mak­ing ul­ti­ma­tums. In­stead of be­ing po­lite, she was dic­tat­ing terms.

‘I cut the con­ver­sa­tion short and drove her back to the port.’

Dual na­tion­al­ity

At the ferry ter­mi­nal, an Ar­ran po­lice­man spoke to the woman. He told the Ban­ner that she had dual na­tion­al­ity from Por­tu­gal and Ma­cau and was en­ti­tled to stay.

The woman sought ac­com­mo­da­tion at a Brod­ick ho­tel and spoke to the Ban­ner out­side.

‘It is the first time I have been to Scot­land. I bought a one-way ticket and might have come with­out the of­fer.’

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