Friday, June 1st
Today was awesome . . .
6.30 in this morning we were already in the mining office for our training. It was not for that boring theories stuff, but for something cooler than that. Today we’re going to the underground, to the 1000 ft level …
Around ten minutes after seven, we were already in the shaft station. Shaft is the other name for big hole that goes deep underground and it has a cage that acts like an elevator. But, don’t imagine it like this :
it’s too fancy..
Try to imagine like being in a big box container without any light. It’s dark, wet, and almost no space to move because the operator is gonna put around 40 people in it per way (up and down). Can you imagine it yet? Hopefully yeah.
Then, as that shaft goes down, you’ll be in a total darkness except from a small light that comes from the operator side. And also, along the way down there, if you pass several level of mining, you’ll be able to see a glimpse of light in each level. Just those two lights, and the rest are just dark color.
We reached our destination in less than 3 minutes. Then, what’s welcoming us as soon as we stepped our foot in that level was empty space with cold air . Our surrounding was bright with white light that come from many lamps that is hanging in the ceiling. Beneath our foot was train rail that goes deep into the dark tunnel. It was very wet down there and muddy. And there was almost puddle anywhere you stepped your foot.
After couple of minutes walking, our trainer brought us to a place called refuge station. Basically it’s a shelter where everybody should go in case there is an emergency, like fire. That station can accommodate almost 40 people (so it’s big enough), has it’s own water and air supply, medical aid, and the door is made of steel which mean that it’s fire resistant.
After that, we continued our walking to explosive material storage just to get familiar with that stuff.
The storage was quite far because we had to walk long enough. Our surrounding was total dark and the only source of light was the lamp that each of us carries in our hat. And sometimes, along our way in that dark tunnel, we encounter mining vehicles which gave us more light to see, even though we still only saw rocks.
Finally we reached our destination. It was like a cave with a perimeter line outside it that says explosive material. Entering this place, everyone that carries radio communication should turn it off. You know what would happen if they don’t, do you?
After saw and touched some explosives (my first time ever), and listened to our trainer explanations of course, now our training down here was almost over. Leaving that place, we stopped for a while to examine some rocks stability using a tool called scaling bar and also to prove something, how dark it is down here. How did we do it? We turned off all of our lights and try to see our hands that we positioned right in the front of our face. We saw nothing. Everything was black…
In the end, we waited for another couple of minutes for our transportation to go to the surface… It was a jeep, and we rode it thorough the ramp (like a spiral tunnel that connects each level, even the surface).
After had that underground training, we went to a room in the mine office to have like a detail explanation about what we’ve been encountered down there. It was not that long because by midday, we’re almost over. Then, all of a sudden, our trainer offered us a very interesting deal.
So, he had just been repainting his upstairs and now want to move some stuff from his basement to that upstairs. There are only him, his wife, and his teenager daughter in his home, so it will be difficult for him to move it. And then he came up with this idea of asking us to help him and offered us wine in return. Wow, what a coincidence. Why? First, we’re going to have a barbeque that night so having a wine would be good 😀 . Second, it’s not every day we are going to have a chance seeing Canadian home that close and even enter it. Third, some of us are going to have a ride back to the hotel. So, you should have figure out what our answer was, right?
It took us almost an hour to move all his furniture and stuff. But it’s a good work out for us, especially that day was a cold day. And in the end, his wife gave us three big bottles of homemade wine. Something that we’re not expecting at all. Thank you Mike.. 😀
three bottle of home made wine (except the one with a red color cast on the top)
It was still raining by the time we wanted to start the barbeque. The clock already showed 6.30 pm (we planned to start at 6 pm) , and there was no sign that it’s going to stop. But, we’re not gonna let this small rain stop us …
And so, we’re still having that barbeque. We cooked it outside in the barbeque machine and ate it inside the dining room. We took turn to flip the meat, shrimp, and corn that we cook outside in the rain. It’s a barbeque in the rain, not only because we need to face the rain every time we wanted to flip those foods, but also because those foods that we cook mingled with rain every time we open the barbeque machine cover to flip it.. 🙂 . But, it’s still tasted good..
we’re enjoying the “rain barbeque” in the dining room
Agus Praditya T