Charles Kane and his wife Abbi lived between two worlds, or two continents, until they moved to Beaudesert.
The engaging American, originally from Chicago, moved to Beaudesert in 2021.
He first came to Australia as a university exchange student.
“I’ve always been intrigued by Australia,” he said.
“The diverse wildlife, being right on the water, the Great Barrier Reef – that’s why I chose to study at James Cook University in Townsville.”
Not long before he was to leave Australia, he met his future wife, Abbi, and they dated until Charles had to return to the US.
He went on to work in the Peace Corps in Ethiopia for two years.
“I taught women’s empowerment, women’s health and English.”
He found discarded computers and taught local people to use them.
“I lived amongst the locals in a mud hut, bucket bathed.”
He returned to Australia and worked for a company called Rustic Pathways which combines student travel with giving back to the communities they visit.
It was then Charles realised he wanted to live in Australia, but he had no idea how that would happen.
After he returned to the US to take up a job in sales and logistics, Abbi got in touch, saying she was travelling to the US.
“I said, “Well why don’t you stop in Chicago for a few days?””
Abbi stayed in Chicago for ten days.
A year later, Charles engineered an elaborate and romantic proposal when Abbi returned.
To Charles’ delight, Abbi said ‘yes’.
Being from different continents, they had to decide where they were going to live.
After spending some time in the US as a married couple, they decided they really wanted to raise their family in Australia.
At the time covid restrictions only allowed Australian citizens to enter the country, so Abbi moved back, finding work at Kooralbyn International School and a home in Beaudesert.
She fell in love with the Scenic Rim and when Charles joined her eight months later, he felt the same.
“She said, ‘You’ve got to see this place, it’s gorgeous. They don’t call it the Scenic Rim for nothing,” he recalls.
Earlier this year, their son Henry was born, who has made their family complete.
“I can’t describe to you just how beautiful this area is,” he says.
“It is an amazing place to raise your kids.”
Since they moved, Charles has had some contract jobs but has struggled to find permanent work locally.
He estimates he has applied for 400 jobs, from sales positions to labouring jobs but has often been told he ‘lacks Australian experience’.
Articulate and friendly, Charles remains positive, continuing to apply for positions locally and hoping his dream job will complete the great life they have made in Beaudesert.