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My crazy mining stories (2) - The field "adventure"

Technically this is an exploration story but it is crazy enough to make it to this blog.


In 2011 (a whole ten years ago), I was working as a geologist in training in the exploration department. One day a senior geo and I went to the field with 2 surveyors, in order to go survey the position of boreholes drilled. We had decided to take one 4x4 and we had already mentally prepared ourselves for the hour's drive to the site.


Destination: middle of nowhere aka somewhere near Greylingstad

Cellphone Signal: none

Seating arrangements: Geologists in the back, surveyors in the front


We got to site at about 11am and we approached a rather rocky part of the "road", the driver decided that the best way to navigate this was just to go over as quickly as possible. This was, in fact, not the best way and I remember hearing (and feeling) that puncture happen to the back tyre. We all got out, just to find 2 punctures staring at us. It was decided that the surveyors would change one tyre and the geo's would go look for signal in the burning sun, to call back to the office for another spare.


Eventually we managed to find a spot with cellphone reception, called for help and then found out that we would only get our other tyre in about 2 hours. By this time, the sun had turned up the heat to maximum strength, and I remember feeling like an egg being fried. On the way back to the 4x4 we spotted a lone tree, with some much needed shade and we proceeded to utilize this resource.


Unfortunately, a colony of bees had decided to use the resource before us, and we found ourselves being "encouraged to relocate" The little morale I had left, disappeared instantly. Hours later, we got our tyre, finished our work and returned to the office safely. I don't even remember what time we finished work that day.


The lesson I learnt from this is that I should always be prepared when going to the field or underground. Don't assume you will have a quick trip, you might find yourself under a tree with some bees for all you know! I also learned that I must expect the unexpected and not to let one bad day at work dampen my spirits. Looking back now, it's a random, funny story but when it happened I wasn't laughing at all.


If you have every experienced 2 flat tyres and a beehive, please let me know!


And don't forget to book your free 45min Career Clarification Session here: https://calendly.com/laurengamba/clarification-session

I have experienced a few crazy things in my career, I promise I can help you gain clarity in your career in geoscience or mining.


Until next time, stay safe!





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