I've done another three new episodes in quick succession, all from Europe, but from quite disparate parts. After a succession of war-related episodes, this was a bit of a change of mood, but there were some quite meaningful and reflective conversations that came out of these conversations. In two of the three, the decision to stay in Tasmania was not planned, but revolved around meeting someone special. In two of them also, they were on a working holiday backpacking around Australia and Tasmania proved to be the final destination.
Markelos grew up in Limassol, the second largest city of Cyprus, and an ancient seaport. So Markelos grew up with a strong connection with the sea, and so it perhaps makes sense that he should end up as a commercial diver in Tasmania.
Markelos didn't take to the school environment and didn't last long at university and instead decided to travel the world. He says Tasmania is the place where has felt the most at home of all the places he's been and hopes to settle for longer ( visa issues notwithstanding).
Carmen described herself as "a bit of a nerd" and was the kind of pupil who would ask for extra homework at school.
So perhaps she was destined for academic life. She completed a Phd in Marine Ecology and then came to Launceston to do postgraduate research for 2 years, but met her husband there and is still in Launceston 15 years on, working in the field of sustainability. She's also from Galicia, a region in the northwest of Spain, with its own language and a climate more akin to Tasmania than the Costa Del Sol.
A bit like Markelos, Lisbeth came to Australia to work and fund a travel adventure. Her first job was as a jillaroo in the north of Queensland. In the last part of her working holiday she came to Tasmania and met Adam. They quickly fell in love, got married and had a memorable honeymoon in Denmark. Lisbeth also spent part of her childhood in Greenland, where he mum comes from. Her children are also learning Danish online with a teacher in Denmark.
On a more sombre note, you'll also hear the touching story of spending her last Christmas with her Dad in Denmark, before he eventually was taken by cancer.
There's a really nice mix of light and dark in these stories, and astute observations and interesting reflections. And, as throughout these episodes, food comes up a fair bit too ( and language ).