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As far as relationship milestones go, meeting the parents has got to be up there with one of the more anxiety-inducing moments.
But thankfully for 2020 Bachelor star Locky Gilbert, his first encounter with girlfriend Irena Srbinovska's parents couldn't have gone any better.
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The 31-year-old adventure guide, who is currently based in Perth, wasn't able to meet Irena's Melbourne-based family until this year due to the boarder closures across Australia as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
However as the saying goes, good things come to those who wait and Locky admits he gets on famously with Irena's mum Vesna and dad Vasco.
"Her parents love me more than they love her," Locky laughs in an exclusive interview with Now To Love.
"I think so as well, they adore Locky," Irena admits.
While the pair missed out on The Bachelor's traditional hometown visits, they were able to recreate all the magic of a hometown stay earlier this year when they headed to Melbourne to spend time with Irena's family.
The couple stayed at Irena's parents' home in Melbourne along with Irena's beloved pet dog, Leo, in early February. The group also explored Melbourne's Mount Macedon on a hike - a location that could've made an appearance on The Bachelor had the coronavirus restrictions not been enforced.
"It was incredible. Seeing Locky with my family in the home that I grew up in... It was so special," the nurse tells us.
"We went out hiking, that's where I wanted to take Locky on my hometown date and he finally got to see it! And we got to do it with my parents and my beautiful dog," she adds.
"It was definitely a special moment and something that my parents have been waiting for since I first went on the show. They get along like a house on fire!"
Aside from dazzling the parents, travel-lover Locky most recently indulged in a romantic road trip from Perth to South Australia with Irena.
While it sounds like one long extended Bachelor date, the couple reveal they've learnt a lot about each other on their journey.
"Irena's the best at saying no! On the show it was all like, 'She's so nice!' My mum was like, 'Will she be able to say no to me?' She doesn't let me get away with anything," the former Survivor star explains.
Locky also admits Irena has inspired him to make some major life changes - including visiting a doctor and a dentist for the first time in his life.
"I have just realised that before Irena, I'd never been to the doctor, never been to the dentist. And now in the last three months, I've been to the doctor's twice, I've had my wisdom teeth pulled out, I've had my eyes checked," he chuckles proudly of getting on top of his life admin.
"And you've done all of that on the road," she proudly notes.
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