T-minus 7 weeks



As anyone older than 20 knows, the universe has a way of dealing the hands of life the way it pleases, regardless of which game the players thought they were playing. The idea to move to Indonesia came about last October or November when Todd learned that things on the hill at former Homestake Mine would soon change, causing his job to be gradually whittled down. Todd called a former coworker from Homestake, whom he admires a great deal and who now works for Freeport McMoran’s Grasberg mine on Papua Video: Ground Rules Grasberg Mine.

This buddy said, in a sense, to come for a visit, because they were ready to add personnel.

All my life, I have wanted to live overseas. The Pacific was simply not the sea that I had envisioned. But by February we were on a whirlwind trip from Rapid City, South Dakota, via Dallas/Ft. Worth, LAX, Hong Kong, Denpasar Bali, to Timika Papua. There is only one flight from Bali to Timika, and it’s at 1:50 am. So not a lot of sleep occurred. The last leg was from Timika airport 7,000 feet up the mountain to Tembagapura by Mi-171, a Russian military-style helicopter that seats 28 passengers. After thirty-three hours in the air plus layovers, one of eight hours, we landed in Tembagapura and beheld lush green mountains and waterfalls towering among the clouds.

In spite of not having slept in a bed for three days, we were immediately on the go, being shown the towns that make up the mine community by our new friend Rama, and treated to dinner at the Lupa Lelah Club. The second day, Todd toured the mine and I walked about the town of Tempagapura with Robin, a Mobridge girl. An acquaintance from Spearfish whose husband also works for the mine also showed up for lunch with “the girls.” I’d say, “what a small world,” except that it took two days to get to the other side!

After background checks, thorough physicals, many vaccinations and doubts that this would really happen, it’s now sevens weeks out from our departure date of July 14, 2016. Emotions are running rampant. One hour I think we must be daft, and the next I am reveling in our good fortune to receive such a rare opportunity. I am trying to break the news gradually to my mom who is in the nursing home in town, so reminded her again today of our plans. Her response was delight about the fact that I can go visit her distant cousin in Australia! What a relief.

We can bring 1,000 pounds by air, and put “a reasonable” amount in a container to send by sea.

It’s time to start making and checking off lists.


First Things First

First Things First

Though I have written dozens of 20-page papers, I am not a willing or happy writer. For me it is a painstaking process, because I second guess every word, and am an unskilled typist, since I took music classes instead of typing at Brookings High School. There, see? That was a run-on and I think I ought to go back and fix it, but decide against it.

Why a blog, then, you ask? Because it’s the best way I can devise to keep my friends posted on our imminent move to Papua, New Guinea, Indonesia without clogging up Facebook. Hubby Todd nabbed a great job at the Grasberg Copper mine 14,000 ft. in the mountainous jungle. About Grasberg Mine

The health approval came in from Johannesburg last week, and the moving company called this morning, so this dream is surely becoming reality, and it’s time to take it seriously. Most of my emotions involve excitement in my tummy; yet the doubts creep in periodically, with wonder at what on earth we think we’re doing posing as worldly citizens who deserve such an incredible opportunity. And who is going to look after my dear momma? And who will take our cats?

Aside from those concerns, this is an ideal time for Todd and me to take this step. His job at Barrick is ending, my courses are dwindling, and Tobias and Lizzy are off doing their things. So, wish us well, say some prayers, and keep checking back for updates to Crossbards Wanderlust!