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Colin passes the potato test – but the ketchup tastes funny

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So now we know the kind of deep psychological testing used to flush out wobbly candidates for top jobs in the St Helena Government. Call it the potato test.

In a profile on the Wales Online website, Colin Owen reveals how he was tossed the unexpected curve ball when he and his family decided to escape to a new life on the island three years ago.

“In my interview they asked me if I could live without potatoes for half a year,” says Colin, who’s just been promoted to become the island’s next financial secretary. He didn’t flinch. “I thought it was a completely bizarre question at the time and answered that I’d have rice or pasta instead, but living here now I can see why they asked it. We can go for months without certain foods.”

And that’s not the only strange thing about life on St Helena. “The Heinz tomato ketchup is from South Africa, not the UK, so it tastes different.”

The internet piece describes how Colin first decided to seek a new professional adventure when he realised his job in London meant he saw too little of his children.

“It’s been fantastic,” he says. “St Helena has given us so many opportunities as a family, whether it’s fishing, watching the dolphins and whales in the bay, scuba diving or walking.”

His description of the island? Like North Wales, but slightly warmer.

Read the full story in the 13 July 2012 issue of the St Helena Independent.

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