Next year. You do not want to see me for an entire year!? haha. This was a conversation I had with someone who has become a close friend, her name is Kelly.
That made her last two then she said okay next month. I said okay I will see you next month. She laughed at that also thinking it was a joke. I said you don’t believe me huh? This is October, I will see you in November, I promise.
As it turns out, Kelly told me she previously rent a salon that she had started with just her and a barber about 5 years ago. She did really well and got up to eight employees. Unfortunately in her fourth year of business she had a very bad string of luck where she lost a lot of her top-earning staff. She tried to replace them but could not recover in time. Kelly was very honest with me I told me she had several offers from male clientele who are willing to help keep her business afloat but of course they would want something else in exchange and she wasn’t willing to do that so she folded and closed shop.
She mentioned to me that she is very much interested in starting again, trying again and that is the great thing about the human perseverance, the human determination. The ability to start over again and again, even after countless losses and failures. I believe these are the type of people that will be truly successful. I believe Kelly will be truly successful. We’ve had several discussions about what it would take to get her started again in the salon industry. I also asked her if she knows what she did wrong or what lesson she might have learned from the first time around? Should give some examples of both but what I was most impressed with is what she said next.
Kelly said she was saving to open another shop and she plan to start with just one Barber like she did the first time. That’s not the really impressive part, the really impressive part is that she said she would not begin until she continued her education and got up to date with some of the newest things. While microblading was a come-and-go fad in the United States many girls and Asia do not have eyebrows and according to Kelly about 70% of women do their eyebrows or eyelashes on a regular, recurring basis. She said this time she would not have a salon that caters to males at all oh, it would be all female services.
Kelly and I have somewhat of a language barrier because she is born and raised in Vietnam. I would say Kelly understands about 60 to 70% of everything I say but she can only speak about 15 to 20%. We have Google translate helping us with the rest which is pretty cool it translates on the Fly you can put it between two people and it talks for both of you. Still Kelly doesn’t talk much she just said she wants to go back to school first and learn how to do acrylic nail work other techniques with eyelash extensions. Previously I have thought the only eyelash extensions were the ones my sister buys it Walgreens, the type that glue on and fall off after a few days or a week at best. In case you didn’t know there are these eyelash extensions where they actually stitch on some longer eyelashes to your actual eyelashes they last several months.
After a month of way but talking to Kelly on pretty much a daily basis I decided that I would like to return to Vietnam in also researched the salon business along with a breakfast restaurant business. I’m a research a couple others as well. My mother and others have always told me I need to have other sources of revenue.
I’ve been very impressed by Kelly’s initiative, her drive. Kelly has been single for almost 3 years. Dhe’s been managing on her own since she broke up with an ex who ironically was also Chinese like my ex. I got the pleasure of video chatting and staying in touch with Kelly on the other side of the world with neat tools such as Facebook. It also makes the translations kind of easy. Originally I was typing in English pasting it into Google translate and copying it in Vietnamese and dropping it into Facebook. We learned that it is quicker for both of us to type in our native language and then just copy it and paste it into Google translate and read it. Why am I mentioning all this? I’m trying to show you that where there is a will, there is a way.
In my video chatting with Kelly I learned that she was living in the equivalent of an efficiency apartment. For those of you who do not know, an efficiency is a little different than a studio. It is also a lot smaller. A studio usually has a separate kitchen. An efficiency unit is basically a square and everything is in that square. I also saw Kelly cooking amazing meals on one electric burner. There for Angelo being Angelo oh, I asked Kelly for help in securing me a new apartment in Saigon big enough for the both of us so we can spend one month as roommates pounding out business ideas together. Kelly is very feasible and she is very good with money. She was trying to put me in a smaller space to save me money. But I told her if I am moving to the other side of the world I would like a place that feels good to come home to. Ironically I now have a two-story Loft that is only about $400 a month. It is brand new construction and Kelly and I are the very first residents.
Is there going to be a relationship? We both agree that we are open to that idea but we both agreed that business must be our main objective. I like the fact that she has been single 3 years, there are no crazy ex-boyfriends running around haha. Her mind is also clear, she appears to have done all the healing she needed to do after her last breakup.
I will leave you with one last quote. If you keep doing what you’ve been doing, you will keep getting what you been getting. If you want something different, you must try something different.
A man is only as good as his word, and the promises that he keeps. Some men talk the talk, some men Walk The Walk. Again, actions are always better than words. Kelly is to my right in the photo 😉 along with one of my closest friends “A” sitting across from me, he is like a brother now.
Angelo left Vietnam in October, Angelo came back November.
Here are a few more on my first few days in Vietnam…
The one below is one of my favorites, why? We did alot of running around, we even picked up her nephew who I call Benji. We took him to an arcade, which is one of my own foundest memories as a child. I got to know Benji too in all the video chatting Kelly and I did while I was stateside.
We came home and a carpet we had ordered had arrived it’s very soft. We just through our legs up and played with our phones. We also got sick of our phones and did a little tickling back and forth, Benji started it actually. I love kids.
Good times in the mall arcade. Benji by the way was the only person I brought a gift for, Kelly would not let me buy her anything. I gave Benji and xbox that was collecting dust at my place. Sadly the cord burnt when they plugged it into 220 volt socket. USA is a 110 voltage. We will get another cord.
Get out of your comfort zone, go go go….