Challenge called Turkmenistan

Yeah, I’ll write every week. No problem! And then three weeks Turkmenistan came along. Bye bye every week hello huge challenge.

And what a challenge it was, never ever have I been in such an isolated country as this. With so much dust, and so little to do. The limitations you have as a foreigner are huge. Be back inside before 10 pm, No cellphone internet, no international news websites and dangerous traffic.

Five compressor trains are to be commissioned in Mary, Turkmenistan. They’ll be used at the fertilizer plant they are building there, state of the art, government funded project. Driven by steam turbines this was my first job with this type of machinery, the turbines and compressors are controlled by the ITCC concept of Woodward. A high tech control philosophy that proves modern anti surge control and steam turbine control. Having never worked with this, it was a real challenge to learn the system and get used to it.

A greater challenge were the living conditions which we were faced with, you can see in the pictures what they were. I notice now that adjusting back to the life in Amsterdam is just as hard as the other way around. During the countless idle hours I have been trying to keep myself busy with studying the lyrics of several Macklemore songs, since they are very difficult of course I didn’t manage! Also I started reading the famous book from Stephen Covey: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, this book helped my through some dark hours and made me realize that you only need your mind to feel happy and satisfied. Being pro-active regarding your environment and surrounding really changes the way you look at it, you become able to put it into perspective of what it really is.

Other things I have noticed of the country are the following:

– People actually stop for the STOP sign

– The country is very very clean (at least the streets, not talking about my room)

– They don’t have roads

– They warn you not to talk in hotels due to listening devices

– Sandstorms are itchy

and last but not least: The women can be very beautiful

Now I am back in Amsterdam, Enjoying the sun in my apartment. Till next week (if I am not going to another country without internet)

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