New arrival planning a long-term stay here
FROM Ballina to Brisbane to Gladstone, Sasha Ryan is happy to call our city her new home.
Sasha, 26, said she had come from the big city to be a part of an ever "bigger" one.
"Like everyone else I came here for work, but it's a surprise because, no, I don't work on the island," she said.
"I lived in Brisbane for six years and made the move up here to be a HR adviser for a big company."
After only being in town for three months, Sasha said she had plans to stay long term.
"Call me weird but I actually like it here," she said.
"I'm originally from Ballina, near Byron Bay, which only has 20,000 people, so it's like the same here but a little different."
Sasha brings with her a fresh perspective and says local residents are sitting on a gold mine.
"There's honestly so much opportunity here and a lot of room for people to tap into niche markets," she said.
"What I've noticed is that there's a lot of transient people around, and the chance to make some more money from businesses like coffee shops.
"If I had more money I'd develop my own business here."
But the industry isn't the only thing Sasha loves about this place.
"I live out at Tannum at the moment and while the drive is a killer I love the vibe down there," she said.
"On the weekends I love going to Canoe Point and Lightbox and of course taking my staffy down to the beach."
While Sasha said she had noticed Gladstone was quite socially "cliquey" and she was missing her family, she was open to making it work.
"I moved here all by myself which is a big choice but I'm in the big smoke now," she said.
"I've met a couple of nice ladies from a group called Girls Gladstone.
"Apart from that I've had heaps of people from Brisbane come up to visit me, which is great."
There is no doubt in Sasha's mind that Gladstone is a place where she can prosper.
"I firmly believe happiness in a place is what you make of it," she said.