SOUTH Cumbria is a long way from Central America, but this has not stopped Efrain Funes and Monika Velado-Funes moving from El Salvador and loving their life and work in the area.
Efrain worked as a production manager at Oxley Developments in Barrow for five years before making the move to GSK, in Ulverston, nine months ago.
Monika travelled to the UK to join him two years ago and began work at Siemens Subsea, also in Ulverston, as a project manager.
The pair, both 34, who live in Barrow, have taken to life in South Cumbria so keenly that they are considering looking for a house to buy in the next six months.
"I was working in the electronic industry before I started at GSK so it was a challenge to learn everything," said Efrain.
"My role is that I manage the people and we work to hit targets and manufacture in the best way possible, but it has been a very good experience at the company and it is the right place to be because it is growing and there is a lot of development at the site."`
The couple never planned to move to South Cumbria, but said they found it a pleasant contrast to the bustle of their native San Salvador - the capital of El Salvador.
Efrain worked in El Salvador before moving to Madrid to study for his Masters Degree.
"The decision to come here was very difficult at the beginning, because we come from San Salvador and it is very busy and Madrid is the same, it is a vibrant city, and when I heard about Barrow and this area I didn't know what to expect," he said.
However, they say they have settled into the area well, embracing the slower pace of life that South Cumbria has to offer.
"I like to do the crazy stuff," said Monika.
"We have been to do the Via Ferrata Extreme at Honister Slate Mine and the Go Ape at Grizedale Forest with the zip wire."
Next summer the couple are also thinking about buying a small motorboat to explore some of the lakes.
"We were used to life being very stressful and a lot of traffic jams and having to travel a lot to get to work, but here everything is just 20 minutes away," said Efrain.
"Life here is nice and we don't have the stress. I used to think I would miss the city but now I realise that rural life isn't so bad."
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