By ending my work in Angola by October 2017, I had the intention to close the blog for the public. Due to the large number of world-wide visitors, the lack of information about Angola and the visits by Heerema own staff, I decided to keep this blog open for the public. Rarely new paged will be added but the achieve of 6 years (2011-2017) of pictures shall stay available.
You can scroll the calendar on the right side of the page. All colorer dates are issued of blogs mainly published every Sunday.
With kind regards,
Bob van der Meer
HEEERMA PORTO AMBOIM FABRICATION YARD
After more than 6 years in Angola my assignment was accomplished, place HPA on the map and ‘Build a First-class Fabrication yard recognized by the Oil Majors’.
The yard successfully performed the fabrication of the MAFUMEIRA driven piles, the KAOMBO suction anchor piles, KAOMBO marshalling scope and ongoing the KAOMBO spool and jumper scope.
We build the MSD, trained our local employees from almost nothing to high skilled certified workers. We developed the HTC ‘Heerema training centre’ and the ‘Heerema safety centre’. We introduced VCA to our employees and trained them. We took care of knowledge transfer so we were able to operate a first class fabrication yard. Looking at the jobs we performed, we see a learning curve and continuous improvement.
Today HPA is mentioned by the client as the ‘BEST performing yard of the KAOMBO project’.
Not only offshore project work. We are also highly involved in social projects:
The Library, a small but well equipped library. Here a team of two teachers run the facility. Each month new themes, themes that matters and educate the local population. But the also provide support to students al the schools of Porto Amboim with elementary knowledge to make them grow. The Heerema Library of Porto Amboim has a high reputation. Even from other provinces, more than a days travel, the undertake the voyage in order to satisfy their eager of knowledge or to solve a problem.
REMAR Boys shelter
We are supporting REMAR, the boys shelter at Porto Amboim, already for almost 6 years. REMAR shelters boys from the age of 5 till 18 who felt over the edge of society,. Dugs and alcohol addicts, abandoned children and orphans but also children that cannot live at home any more. Here they are rehabilitated with the target to integrate them back in the society. HPA and its employees made a difference for these unfortunate boys by creating an environment the breaths trust. We take care of the technical installation, we improved the facilities, we take care of daily food and on a by-weekly base the yard nurse/doctor visit REMAR and advises in their healthcare. The management stay within the REMAR Organization in Angola.
We also support some smaller ‘one time’ projects as the upgrade of the local old folks home, student support for yearly meetings, the yearly football tournament, the yearly Carnival etc.
On all levels WE MADE A DIFFERENCE.
It represents the figure of an elderly person that could be a man or a woman. It expresses an intentional subjectivism as, in Angola, the elderly represent wisdom and,experience of long years and knowledge of the secrets of life.
With these results I will end my Angolan assignment. This will also be the end of my active involvement in HMC, followed by an early retirement in 2018. I will continue ‘exploring the world’ as this planet is a too beautiful place to stay at just one place.
My ‘fun blog’ placed HPA on the map and grew to an information scours for the benefit of HMC and all clients and parts of it where regular used for reporting.
https://bobsbest.blog reported on a weekly base the developments on the yard and information about this beautiful country this resulted in the following statistics:
- 6 Years
- 240 Posts
- 4625 Pictures
- 65.673 Views divided over:
- 142 Countries (official 197 countries worldwide)
- Main views: Netherlands, Angola, Poland, USA, UK and Canada
My blog will continue on a private base. It will be password protected and only accessible for friend and family, to be affected by the end of October.
Fabrication work ongoing.
Delta plate with rigging arrangement.
Sunday morning 05:30h, a photo shoot at the beach. Last night it rained a little and I did not notice that is was PA slippery so I went down. Covered by mud and a bruised hip. This woman saw it happen and assisted me very friendly cleaning up a little. ‘Muito obrigado para ajuda de limpa meo’
This was a great Sunday morning, 2 hours well spend!!!
Past week I arrived on Friday. After many delays at Schiphol but also at Paris, at last I arrived in Luanda. The driver was waiting and around noon we arrive at Porto Amboim. As I did not sleep the night, the first thing I needed was rest. I slept till late in the afternoon. Tomorrow I will go to the yard. Saturday morning I was informed that the team building party that evening will also be my goodbye.
The party was organized at a new facility opposite the Casa Branca hotel, a ver big but nice facility.I was requested to start with the speech I prepared that morning. It was professional translated by Tagilde into Portuguese. To say goodbye after 6 years for me is an emotional step that I have to make. Due to my health and the fact that i celebrated by 65th birthday with almost 20 years away from my family, also made me decide to end my professional life. I will first consume my never taken holidays followed by an early retirement. My real departure will be in 2 weeks from now.
Marc Mellema as CFO of the early HPA days, looked back at the past 6 years, our struggle, our frustration but also our successes. We realized the assignment ‘Built a First Class Fabrication Yard, Recognized by the Oil Majors’. And we can end with the remark ‘ACCOMPLISHED’
New balls, drinks and some finger-food was part of this event. It was a very successful day and by this I want to thank the site team with Aymen as big promotor for the support they are giving to REMAR. Days like this are making the difference in their already so hard young lives .
BOB’s Birthday, 65 YEARS
It took me 65 years to reach the day of today (10 September), many ups a few downs and grateful to built the life that I have today. With a wonderful birthday cake , we celebrated my this event with wonderful people.
The next 2 weeks I will be on leave in the Netherlands. I will be back 29 September.
Welds are not coated to allow MPI on these welds.
Overview of the two Wheatstone frames with out-reachers to be installed spool dedicated.
The last three buoyancy tanks to be installed. By the end of September 2017, the SSCV Balder will be finishing its scope
QUISSAMA NATIONAL PARC
Last weekend I visited Quiçama National Park, also known as Kissama National Park (Portuguese: Parque Nacional do Quiçama or Parque Nacional da Quissama), is the national park in northwestern Angola. It is the only functioning national park in all of Angola, with the others being in disrepair due to the Angolan Civil War.
The park is approximately 70 km from Luanda, the Angolan capital. The park covers 3 million acres (12,000 km²), more than twice the size of the U.S. state of Rhode Island.
What is now Quiçama National Park was formed as a game reserve in 1938. In January 1957, it was proclaimed a national park by the Portuguese administration of the Overseas Province of Angola.
The park once was home to an abundance of large game animals such as elephants and Giant Sable, but after wide-scale poaching during 25 years of civil war, the animal population was virtually eliminated.
In 2001, the Kissama Foundation, a group of Angolans and South Africans, initiated ‘Operation Noah’s Ark’ to transport animals, especially elephants, from neighbouring Botswana and South Africa. These animals, who were from overpopulated parks in their home countries, adapted well to the move. Noah’s Ark was the largest animal transplant of its kind in history and has given the park momentum to be restored to its natural state.
The restaurant at Quisama lodge. the lodge is managed by a friendly crew. As a regular visitor I am welcomed by the parc manager. In the evening I enjoy a simple but good dinner with a glass of wine and whisky as a desert. In the centre of the parc ‘Quissama loge’ is located. The lodge is a gated area with accommodation to stay the night over. I visit the Quissama Lodge regular, at least twice per year and each time the Park improves.
The The wildebeests, also called Guns, are a genus of antelopes, scientific name Connochaetes. They belong to the family Bovidae, which includes antelopes, cattle, goats, sheep and other even-toed horned ungulates. Connochaetes includes two species, both native to Africa: the black wildebeest, or white-tailed gnu (C. gnou); and the blue wildebeest, or brindled gnu (C. taurinus).
In East Africa, the blue wildebeest is the most abundant big game species; some populations perform an annual migration to new grazing grounds, but the black wildebeest is merely nomadic. Breeding in both takes place over a short period of time at the end of the rainy season and the calves are soon active and are able to move with the herd. Nevertheless, some fall prey to large carnivores. Wildebeest often graze in mixed herds with zebra which gives heightened awareness of potential predators.
The ‘Yellow-billed Hornbills'(Tockus leucomelas) is a Hornbill found in southern Africa. Yellow-billed hornbills feed mainly on the ground, where they forage for seeds, small insects, spiders and scorpions. This Hornbill species is a common and widespread resident of dry thornveldt and broad-leafed woodlands. They can often be seen along roads and water courses.
The monitor lizards are large lizards in the genus Varanus. They are native to Africa, Asia and Oceania, but are now found also in the Americas as an invasive species. A total of 79 species are currently recognized.
Monitor lizards have long necks, powerful tails and claws, and well-developed limbs. The adult length of extant species ranges from 20 cm (7.9 in) in some species, to over 3 m (10 ft) in the case of the Komodo dragon, though the extinct varanid known as megalania (Varanus priscus) may have been capable of reaching lengths of more than 7 m (23 ft). Most monitor species are terrestrial, but arboreal and semiaquatic monitors are also known. While most monitor lizards are carnivorous, eating eggs, smaller reptiles, fish, birds and small mammals, some also eat fruit and vegetation, depending on where they live. Picture below Monitor Lizard of 1.5m.