Cheryl Pearce - A simplistic lifestyle
It was a really, I would say, quite a simple lifestyle. We lived in Nicosia. The UN, we had some soldiers who... All the forces lived in camps, and so their life was quite austere, and it wasn't luxurious by any standards. But when you talk other peacekeeping missions in Africa, it was considered to be a good mission to be on. I could move freely around. My driver's also close-protection qualified, so I was very much... Everything I did I was supported through it.
My partner, Paul, he came with me for the first year, and then got stuck in Australia when COVID hit, so wasn't with me for the second year. But we could move freely. So I did a lot of diplomatic activity by evening, as part of the political process. And weekends were kept quite simple, but we could move around the island pre-COVID freely. I could move into the North. I had passes to move over there. I was recognised. I was monitored. I was very cautious in moving, but I could be over there in personal.
But exotic, look, Cyprus is an island that's been loved to death. And for me, who's a summer person, I loved being there. And it was a great historical island to visit, to get to understand and to be part of. So yeah, it was a really good opportunity to be part of a mission that had the ability to be able to balance the on and off of work. But you're never actually off. Always had the phone. I was always available and always responsive.