Before I show you a small part of my new world in Tanzania, I'd like to thank everyone who sent such lovely birthday wishes my way via this blog, e-mail and with e-cards. I loved Gaelyn, Sylvia, Betsy and others' take on age: it's all a state of the mind. I also loved Kays comment that she was 29 and holding for many years. It reminded me of a joke I heard on the radio when I was a young lass: the longest five years in a woman's life is between 29 and 30! My brother, Phillip said that I was still young compared to him. I wonder if he remembers the day I was born. He was five years old. I must ask him. (hope I don't forget, lol!) It was wonderful to share my birthday with all of you, thanks!
On Saturday afternoon Grant took me on a tour of the mine . It felt good to be back in a really big mine with open pits and proper benches (steps) leading out of them and adhering to the stringent safety measures.
You can see the benches leading out of this open pit
The structure in the top two photos is called a scalp. It sieves all the small gravel into a shute which sends it to the plant. Anything too big falls to the ground and Grant's front-end loader scoops it up and takes it away. The next three photos shows earth being poured into the dump trucks which then drive it away. The Mwadui airstrip is shown in bottom right corner
The miniscule Mwadui air terminal building
On Saturday night Grant, as new Contracts manager of the mine, organized a braai (South African BBQ) for the men who live in the Guest House Single Quarters. I made the salads with the help of the staff and three of the four Indians grilled the meat on the fire.
Clockwise from left: seated is Grant; Saravanan in red-striped shirt (workshop manager); concealed behind him is Marnitz, production manager; seated, centre, is Juba, a Serb who had us in stitches with his quaint accent. Juba is the engine-rebuild technician; standing in front of the grill, is Narinden, a mechanical technician and seated at table is Depin, the procurement manager
While we all chatted after supper, I noticed that Saravanan was sitting cross-legged on the chair. I asked him if he does yoga. He said yes, and within minutes was demonstrating many postures, several of which I'm familiar with and was getting the hang of back in Keirio Valley. It wasn't long and each man was showing off different exercise techniques and a few party tricks!
Juba started with this very difficult exercise! Narinden tries the stunt a the corner pole
Not to be outdone, Depin tries it next but not very successfully!
Finally Saravanan demonstrates how it's done! I was amazed at the size of his feet and want to ask him if he can walk on coals (he probably can!) Note Narinden still trying the trick in the corner!
We had a lovely evening which served as our introduction to the camp. Young Marnitz, fresh from South Africa, arrived on site with us; it was good to see how he fitted in with the hospitable group of men who are part of Grant's team.
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