“It’s a consistency in my life, going to the mountains and exploring.

I grew up in the Carpathian Mountains and one of the most spectacular national parks in Poland – Tatra National Park – is not far so I could go just for a day trip. I loved just going for long walks in those mountains when I was a teenager.

I studied computer science and when I finished Uni I went to work near my hometown.

One of my friends went to Glasgow. He told me about this job opening and two weeks later I’m talking to a Scottish person over the phone. My life changed completely!

I suppose I thought I might go just for some years and come back to Poland. But I really loved Scottish culture and Scottish people so much. I started going out and exploring the highlands and going everywhere.

In 2017 I met Sarah and we started exploring together. But I also wanted to see other places and to explore more. We talked about it, and we realized that we’re probably gonna move to New Zealand. Sarah wasn’t ready yet, but we decided to move a bit earlier because of COVID.

I really wanted to be close to the mountains and nature. I’m a software developer, so we decided on Christchurch because of job opportunities and proximity to mountains. Sarah gravitates to the coast but in New Zealand you are never far from both.

I’m quite interested in how people interact with mountains and it’s different in different cultures. In Poland, it’s such a popular past-time to go to the mountains but there’s lots of infrastructure so it’s really accessible but by law you cannot go off the trail. When I moved to Scotland, it was completely different. They require farmers to make access through their farm so that people can actually access the mountains, which is amazing, it’s just an amazing playground.

“Here everything is such a grand scale and there’s still lots of glaciers. And it’s so wild and inaccessible compared to a similar environment in Europe. It’s just so much more to discover here.

Yeah, I spend a lot of time in front of the screen for work. And I love it but sometimes I can get stuck in front of the screen, so I really appreciate when I actually go out and then I feel like aaahh!”

– Przemek

Charity registration number: CC57701