We are a couple living in two contrasting Australasian worlds
Hi! I am George, a “Pom” – originally from the congested South London/Kent borders of the UK
After a 5 year spell as a navigating Officer in the British Merchant Navy, I left to study electronics, working in an electronics development laboratory in British Telecom at the dawn of the consumer computer industry.
This lead to an opening as a computer service engineer (CPM – way before IBM DOS!). I subsequently worked as a self-employed computer engineer for 25+ years for major banks and government departments in the UK, Australia and New Zealand including long repeat contracts in Reuters and the BBC in the UK, mainly specialising in “Application Packaging” and delivery. This entailed breaking down applications to their component parts, stripping out security and protection, and delivering the final software “package” to large corporate user bases (e.g. 27,00 users in the BBC, 120,000 in the UK Inland Revenue) via software delivery tools.
Another more apt description of my job was a legalised software pirate!
Over a decade ago I took a year’s sabbatical from the IT world and studied Audio Engineering at the School of Audio Engineering (SAE). Although I returned to I.T. I realised then I had spent far too long in the computer industry. My passion is music. A keen guitarist, playing in an original London rock band “Brunel” in the 80’s, I now spend my spare time crafting original music in my home studio.
Hi, I’m Dianne, a “Kiwi” – I spent most of my childhood growing up on a lifestyle block in Waikanae, New Zealand
After completing a Bachelor of Business Studies (Accounting and Finance) degree at Massey University, I commenced my working career in Wellington in the banking and finance industry, specialising in finance systems such as PeopleSoft. In 1995, I transferred to the Melbourne office of the ANZ Bank and have resided in Australia since then, apart from 3 years working in Singapore for Standard Chartered Bank. For the past 12 years since returning from Singapore (and moving to the Gold Coast) I have been doing contract work and taking the opportunity for extended travel between contracts. My career has also provided me with amazing travel experiences at someone elses expense! This includes working in Vanuatu, Samoa, Tonga, Fiji, Sri Lanka, Dubai, Bahrain, Hong Kong, Malaysia, India, Taiwan, Philippines, London and New York.
More recently, I have completed an IOS Development course and am now dabbling in building Apps.
My main passion has always been tennis and I was lucky enough to have a grass tennis court at home when growing up in Waikanae. Athletics and netball gave way to tennis once I left school and I still love to get out onto the court (when it is not too hot!).
TASMAN HOPPERS is what we are about – constantly hopping across the Tasman Sea visiting each other's amazing lifestyles in New Zealand / Australia. The huge contrasts between Taupo and Gold Coast lifestyles are both complementary and uplifting and motivates us in many ways.
We each try to avoid the oppressive heat of the Gold Coast summer, or the miserable cold of the Taupo winter!, and culture contrasts switching between the glamour and heat of the Gold Coast to the simplicity and freshness of Taupo after a 3 hour flight always amazes us.
George's world: Cool, clean, green, pristine. The Central Plateau and Lake Taupo with a backdrop of the Tongariro region. Skiing, thermal pools, mountain bike trails, outdoor adventure.
Di's world: Golden sands, waterways, beaches and bikinis. Surf clubs, dining out, retail overload. The Gold Coast is Australia’s entertainment mecca. Too hot in summer, perfect in winter!
We are both into healthy food, walking, travel, technology, more recently an obsession with iOS App coding, and cannot be without our awesome e-Bikes!