2013.04.27 - Neris 1 year

Neris turning 1 and Dragon boat race

Been while since the last update, but I still don't have too many news to share. The day after we got back from the Philippines we helped Erkan and Asli decorate the clubhouse event hall for Neris' first birthday. A lot of people turned up and we stuffed ourselves with delicious Turkish food !

Getting the banquet hall ready for the birthday party

Neris was of course oblivious to the fact that it was her party ...

But she didn't seem to mind being the centre of attention either

Sanche was there from Gunsan. He was giving us some tips on the area - nothing very exciting! (our next project will be built in Gunsan)

We had been hiding this huge present in our house for a week - Nicola had bought it on behalf of the girls but couldn't hide it in her house as Erkan and Asli are their neighbors.

Zohreh, Neris and Aga - the favorite teddy bear (or -monkey)

It's now officially spring here in Korea and with spring comes the rain. So we have had a few shopping trips for a new sofa (indoor shopping), but it is not easy to find suitable western furniture here in Korea. It's definitely there somewhere, but not easy to find. Would probably be easier in Seoul. IKEA has not made it to Korea yet.....

Returning from the Philippines we just caught the cherry blossom

Sometimes it felt like it was snowing ....

And after the cherry trees had turned green, other trees continued the show. Here in the compound

Q-block - with two drillship derricks in the background

Safety the Korean way (hint - look at the cable for the traffic light)

Nicola going for Medieval night

Torrin was so happy with his outfit !

Sports - still doing quite a bit of biking. Squash and volley are also regular events. And last week I played badminton with the Yard design team for the first time in many years. Had been missing the shuttlecock ! Michal, one of our squash partners, hurt his back playing with me last Friday. This Wednesday he then twisted his ankle and is supposed to spend 2 weeks with a splinter and 4 weeks on crutches. Really bad luck as we had booked a dive trip together in two weeks ! Hopefully the trip to the doctor on Friday will show that the splinter was an exaggeration .....

Rolf and the cherry trees on Yeompo mountain

Leif and the cherries near Yeompo Junction

This is where Rolf broke his new chain. The mountain is still pretty grey but purple flowers light up the darkness here and there

From one of my bike rides. HHI in the background

Yesterday we went to the yearly dragon boat race. We were motivated and ready to improve our 4th place ranking from last year, but were off to a bad start when the race was delayed 1,5 hours. I was puzzled about the presence of 12 scuba divers in the river. Nosing around their camp I saw that they were all 119-divers - the Korean 911 rescue team ! The race was delayed because they were on a body-hunt! Somebody had jumped the bridge during the night and wasn't seen again. Not a good start to the day.

The race was cut short from 5 races to only 3 and after coming first and having overall best times in the first group races, we managed to scrape up a third place in the final. Better than the other HHI Compound team, who were disqualified in their second race, when they went off course. As a boat had capsized in the previous race, the organizers decided that all boats should have one of the local organizers as helmsmen. For safety. Well - they should have thought twice about this, because the guy "our" team got was absolutely useless and they went from winning their first race to coming last in the second, 4 minutes after the competition. Bummer!

So when they wanted to exchange me for a local steerer in the final, Paula said "No no - he's a real captain". That seemed to persuade them that I knew what I was doing....

I will try to get hold of some photos from the day - for now I only have one:

Waiting - for the body hunt to be over

The biggest news on this post is that I have changed over to the new project. So I have left the drillship project here 5 months before she leaves the Yard and am now working on our semi-submersible drilling rig. This will be the biggest semi-submersible drilling rig in the world when finished and is a fine piece of machinery I am told. Built to work in down to -20 degrees and in very inhospitable waters (first job will be west of the Shetlands, but after that probably in Norway). This week it was also announced that only the pontoons and the main deck will be built in Gunsan (5 hours from Ulsan) and that the rest of the work will be done in Ulsan. So that means about 2 more years for us in Ulsan. Great, as we didn't want to go to Gunsan. Too comfortable here !

The plan is to tow it to Ulsan next February, so I will still have to do a few trips to Gunsan, but it is manageable even though we will be based in Ulsan.