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Here I would love to share with you our travels and adventures as international mushroom consultants. MEMOIRS about husband Pieter Vedder, who was a SCIENTIFIC PIONEER in Mushroom Cultivation Education. His practical handbook is in 8 languages and is called the MUSHROOM BIBLE: https://mariettesbacktobasics.blogspot.com/2020/08/modern-mushroom-growing-2020-harvesting.html

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

HIGH in Mountains Hole in Road and Driving over Planks in Indonesia

 On March 12 of 2021, Blogger friend Helen wrote: Mountains To Climb on which I left her a comment about our Indonesian experience...
Well, on July 2nd of 1990 we were driving up to the Dieng Plateau at our usual time at 6:00 AM but half way we got stuck... 
Frequently after heavy tropical rains during the wet monsoon, entire parts of the mountain got washed away by HUGE landslides. Mud and rocks covering the little villages and destroying everything in its path.
At Dieng there also was a Geothermal Field and one of the Pertamina trucks had to hook off its defect trailer and that was now blocking the road.
Half way up the mountain, you can see the sharp curve of this hairpin bent and up it goes...
It is me, standing with the driver behind our Toyota Super Kijang.
There were NO guard rails and at some spots you could look straight down into a deep chasm with villages below in the valley. Talking about some 8,000 ft high or over 2,400 m.
When we finally got beside the stuck Pertamina trailer, Pieter said, should we not get out of the car...? 
There was a huge hole in the mountain and part of the road was washed down... I was on the chasm side and looking down into a HOLE that would fit my entire home town of Horst in The Netherlands!
OR we had to step over the seat's back and exit through the back door... we both sat in the back of the car.
All of a sudden I said firmly: 'Don't MOVE!' As I saw an idiot making gestures with his hands to our driver who sat in front of me on the right side of the car (driving left!)... Come slowly forward, bend a bit to the other side and sure enough we were moving over some planks they'd placed over the gaping hole!!!
We miraculously made it across that gaping hole, the planks held us.
One thing I know for sure that we both have a Guardian Angel and one that has worked overtime during several of our adventurous years!
Here is such a mini landslide... and not into the deepest chasm but still dangerous!
The Toyota Super Kijang is going to pass over that bridge you see to the right...
Pieter took this photo from a height, he always loved to hike up for a better vantage point.
Would you trust the structure of that bridge...?!
On December 18, 1991 one of the trucks that transported the casing soil bags up to the Dieng area's mushroom farms, got off the road. That caused one person his death and three others injured.
How in the world would they manage to remove that truck... and look at all the soil it scraped off from those terraces.
Once we saw a mini bus in a ravine and that caused like 18 death and a baby got thrown out and did not get found... Tragedy and it makes one shiver!
People over there, live such hard lives and who is looking out for them?
Here you can see the back door of the Toyota Super Kijang, as we approach another location at Lake Merdada, with some 300 mushroom growing sheds and little homes where the families lived.
It is actually a caldera... filled by water over time.
Again, all those terraces on the mountain side.
That also causes lots of erosion as the trees are gone.
Some technical problem, and our driver is sitting behind the car... 
Me in my seat and this very Toyota Super Kijang does not even have a door on the right passenger sight.
On July 10, 1991 when I wanted to come down with my driver (Pieter had been working on the construction of a certain Unit and did not join me going up) there was an accident and the road got blocked by a truck; 2 deaths... So we had to go all the way around via little villages (dessas) over unpaved roads. My driver Ribut found it amusing that in those dessas, people came running up to our car while calling: Ibu Vedder! (Mrs. Vedder). Do they know you, he asked, to which I replied they have to be some of my over one thousand harvesters that know me...
If you want to have a feeling of how climbing up to that height with deep 'open' chasms, this is a good video. Keep in mind that over the years lots of guard rail has been placed... 

Previous post:
{Dieng Plateau Indonesia - Where We Worked} | view the other 2 volcanoes...
My 4th Consulting Trip to India after HUGE Landslide | the worst LANDSLIDE we ever saw...

24 comments:

  1. Hello Mariette, Today you are sharing some of your scary adventures in being a world traveler. I would have been tempted to get out and walk. I have come across some bad roads and plank bridges traveling in Taiwan and the U.S., but nothing even comes close to those roads and landslides in Indonesia. Mountain driving in general is a nightmare--I am getting slightly car-sick just thinking about it!
    --Jim

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Jim,
      Yes this was a scary thing that awaited us on our way up to the mountains and sure would not want to repeat that! The worst landslide we saw, was in India however. Have added the link below post now.
      No, our job certainly has never been one for the scary...
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete
  2. You must have had very active guardian angels, Mariette, to navigate you through this situation. How scary! We don't realize how good life is here in the states for us until we see something like this.
    Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Martha Jane,
      No, most people having lived their entire life in the rather safe and sheltered Western world, have no idea!
      We both are certain we got a Guardian Angel; no doubt.
      Three years later we saw a much worser landslide in India though, did add the link of that post below this one.
      That will do it for us; no more of such adventures! And than still several people always thought we were on vacation and were envious... haha, we just worked and not under the easiest circumstances.
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete
  3. I seriously don't think I could have done it, Mariette. I'm terrified of heights as it is. You WERE brave, and definitely had a guardian angel around you -- maybe more than one!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Kim,
      Oh, this sure is not for the faint of heart or for anyone afraid of heights...
      We both have had so many instances that you wonder how in the world did we get out of this alive. No doubt that we have many Angels watching over us and protecting us from danger; till it will be time to meet them!
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete
  4. A dangerous and super scary drive Mariette. It brought back memories for me of a trip we used to do when we lived in Zambia. Every year we would drive to Mozambique for holidays by the sea, we had to drive over the escarpment between Zambia and Zimbabwe.. was terrifying!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Grace,
      For you having lived in Zambia and traveling to Zimbabwe, you certainly have a good concept of 'different' road conditions as well!
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete
  5. It was certainly one of those adventures that a person remembers for a lifetime.
    xoxo

    Coisas de Feltro

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Christina,
      You bet it was and it is also proof of our Guardian Angel(s)...!
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete
  6. Mucho peligro corrieron ese día y afortunadamente hoy pueden contarlo.

    Besos

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Querida Antónia,
      ¡Los dos estamos muy agradecidos por muchas cosas! Claro que tenemos nuestra protección de Angeles Guardianes en servicio pesado.
      Abrazos,
      Mariette

      Delete
  7. You have a lot of courage driving on those dangerous roads.

    God bless you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Victor,
      Well, we always trusted in God for keeping us safe during all our travels!
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete
  8. Goodness, my tale pales in comparison to yours!!!! Love your blog header ......

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Helen,
      We never expected something like we went through but suddenly you're in it and we're grateful for our protection from above!
      Thank you about the blog header and as you know, I'm a chocoholic; dark chocolate that is and will never ever give that up.
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete
  9. Dear Mariette,

    an intersting country :-)

    best regards
    Bernhard

    ReplyDelete
  10. Replies
    1. Dearest Anne,
      Yes, they sure could be very scary!
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete
  11. The video would not play on uTube..don't know why. Only my middle son has been in similar places...he can appreciate them whereas I would not enjoy. I used to, but I am too old now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dearest Katie Isabella,
      Don't know why the video would not play...?!
      Well, we both are not looking forward to that type of adventures on the road, right now. Since May/June of 2001 we have not been back there.
      Hugs,
      Mariette

      Delete

Thanks for your visit and comment.

Mariette...

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