Some Canadians have made it home. Others havent.

The Big Story


Are you there. I'm always here Jordan. Where where am I? GonNa go fair enough. Well it's the first day of the work week was your weekend any different from your week. aside from not making this podcast not really. I mean. I've just been kind of cooking and taking long walks no complaints. Can you even tell days apart right now? No I usually ask about three times a day. What Day is it today? I keep thinking that I'm supposed to take my garbage out Because every day feels like garbage day now for whatever that's worth but here's a question. Have you felt lucky over the past little while I don't know about lucky of definitely felt very fortunate? I've been trying to look on the bright side of things I mean. I'm very fortunate to have been able to work from home as soon as needed and my partner and I keep each other company. Why have you felt? I really have for whatever it's worth you know when we do research for the show. I tend to dig into the worst stuff. The reports out of Italy Reports from frontline hospital workers in Canada and in the United States and it really drives home the point and this weekend we were reading and listening to stories of Canadians who found themselves abroad when Justin Trudeau said. Hey this is serious. It's time to get home yet. That's that's easier said than done. Yeah and I traveled in February and I think about it. Now you know if it had been a couple of weeks later at the time everybody said it was fine to go a couple of weeks later. I would have been in that same situation. Yeah and some people right now are stuck where they are and today We're GONNA talk to somebody who just made it home under the gun barely and We'll hear from somebody at the end of today's episode. Who is not as lucky? And she'll quickly tell you where she has her situation's very fluid So we wanted to get her information there at the very least but quickly for people who still do know what day it is. Can you tell us where we are? Clara's the quote Unquote workweek. What ever that means now begins while the latest from Canada's Health Minister Patty. Hi Do. Is that if you're back from a trip and you've been told to self isolate and you don't do that. You could face a big penalty. It is critically important especially for those returning home now to ensure that they follow this public health advice that we're giving them and the advice will be not just advice if if we if we need to take stronger measures we will and that actually happened in Quebec. A woman who tested positive for the Koran virus was arrested for violating quarantine order because she was out walking her dog. Prime Minister Trudeau says between Monday and Wednesday. There will be more than thirty flights bringing Canadians. Who are abroad back home. And we are now seeing the first case of Cova. Nineteen in the north. It's in the Northwest Territories. And they've now shut down their border to all nonessential travel uh some. Mp's are being called back. On Tuesday to adopt the emergency measures that were announced last week. Those include the twenty seven billion dollar fund for direct support and the fifty five billion dollars to help business liquidity through tax deferrals as of Sunday evening. One thousand four hundred and thirty six cases of Covert Nineteen in Canada with twenty one deaths. When you find yourself in a situation like our guest today did of course you second. Guess yourself a little bit. Why did I go? How did I end up? Here what could I have done differently? It's natural but I think you have to remember as fast as this thing. Seems like it's moving now a few weeks ago unless you are really paying attention. It didn't seem that it was going to get bad. And besides buck once. You're stuck you're stuck. There's no point in questioning how you got here. You just want to get home and to do that. You might need the help of the government and as we know government. Can't help everyone right now today. I can announce we're working with Canadian airlines to make commercial flights available for as many Canadians who are stranded as possible. Now we won't be able to reach everyone over going to do our best to help those. We can't nothing is really guaranteed anymore and so you take your chances like today's guest Jordan Heath Rawlings and this is the big story. Julia Morales is a student at McGill University in Montreal and today she is in Montreal and safe so first of all. Juliane glad to hear that. Thank you go out to you back your home now. Yes where were you last week? So last week I was in Morocco originally I was will kind of just traveling everywhere and ended up in ten years from where I was supposed to take a flight back to Montreal. Tell me how you got there. Why were you there? When did you go that kind of stuff? So Group of four other students and a professor and I left from McGill University on February twenty seventh to leave for Morocco on a geological field trip. We were going to go steady the geology of the area and sort of understand what processes lead to the current geology of the region and supposedly for two weeks however we were not able to board our flight out of Morocco because of travel bans that were then instilled by the government. What were you thinking? And I don't mean this in a bad way. But what what were you thinking as the flight approached? And you knew you were going. Were you worried Had you heard anything from the government or anywhere else advising you know actually going into the trip I think. Any of the stresses kind of just related to the usual stress of traveling. Do we have everything we need. Is Everyone have a tenth? Is Everyone have hiking boots Nothing related to the extra corona virus because as we had seen on government of Canada website about point. Morocco is very safe. There were no cases or I believe zero. The two case cases of corona in the country and Italy had yet to undergo this boon which we now have seen the past two weeks So we felt quite confident in going to the country and being safe in coming back. Tell me about when that situation changed in Morocco. What were you hearing? What was happening there so every night as we would have dinner we would actually go on the corona world meter website and see what the the statistics were saying about the spread of the virus and even until the last day we were supposed to be their only about. I believe eighteen. Total cases in the country So we weren't too concerned about our state in the country more was going on in the neighboring countries such as Spain particularly Because obviously we're seeing that it was exploding all over Europe and immediately saw that the political response in all these countries with started closing down borders. We started to get concerned about the fact that we may not be able to return but up until then we have not heard anything from our airline or the government in Rocco or the Canadian government. So we weren't we again. We're not too concerned about the idea that we were going to be able to come back home. Tell me about making the decision to try to get home. What happened and what you do that. Yes so we arrived at Tangiers airport as we were supposed to and as we walked into the airport we received the news that essentially Morocco was closing. Its borders to about twenty countries. It was GONNA stop international flights in and out of twenty countries and among those were Canada. Which is quite surprising because the USA was not on the on that list in the US has many more cases of corona virus than we do and at that point we immediately started looking for other flights out of the country and we managed to book another one through Qatar And three days later we were supposed to cash played. We found out that Qatar was also closing. Its borders and would not allow us to fly through there so this all began a whole spiral of trying to find any flights out. What did you do but did we do what we kept? Trying to find. More flights we booked another flight out of Casablanca on Foulon really quickly counseled expedia actually called us about like a few hours. After having both in told us that the play it would not be going out. We booked another flight with Air Canada which then got cancelled. We booked another flight through Royal Moroccan. That also cancelled we for pretty much just desperate to find anything that would get us out of the country so our original flight was supposed to go through. Casablanca before then heading to Montreal. So you decided to take a flight to Casablanca since it's like a major flight hub in the country and we figured that our chances of getting a flight out would increase if we were in that city and so we just kept trying once we arrived in Casablanca airport. We tried to make sure if our flight would actually be going out. And the people at the counter told us that they couldn't even find our

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