A Travellerspoint blog

May 2016: Austin, Midland, Anchorage, Houston

All in America but one of these cities is not like the other!

May started out with OTC, the Offshore Technology Conference. Although I didn't have formal speaking roles I was engaged in multiple SPE and other business meetings. The first two copies of my most recent book (See this link for details) were available and as always, I learned a lot from the exhibits and papers. We caught an opera in Houston, the only one of the month!
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I also went to a local crawfish festival.
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Austin

I have spoken at meetings of the AIPN previously and at this conference I was the moderator for a panel discussion in the Woodlands. I went straight from there to Austin, TX for the SPE Workshop entitled Tight Oil and Liquids-Rich Gas: Adapting to Survive in a New Price Environment . I was a speaker and participant there along with other SPE and BHI meetings.

Back in Houston I gave an ethics course at the SPE/IAEE Hydrocarbon Economics and Evaluation Symposium. Themed “Fundamental Drivers, Commodity Cycles, and the Dynamics of Oil and Gas Valuation

Midland

Then off to Midland for an awards ceremony, meeting with section officers and students.
large_2016-05-19_20_45_24.jpglarge_2016-05-19_12_46_46.jpg This was a fast trip but I had the chance to go out and eat Mexican food with a lot of students from a couple of great Universities who had come to attend the conference! Then we toured the newly reopened petroleum museum.
large_2016-05-19_13_50_25.jpglarge_2016-05-19_13_17_44.jpglarge_2016-05-19_13_50_34.jpg I gave a speech at the awards ceremony held at the Petroleum Club and handed out a lot of awards. I got a SPELFIE with three former SPE Presidents. Can you name them all?

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Anchorage

I selected Anchorage for our Board meeting and we held it adjacent to the Western Regional Meeting. Fortunately there was a little time in between the two so my wife and I could be Alaska tourists for a few days. At the WRM I met with students and YPs and spoke at a luncheon meeting. We also handed out some awards. It was great to be back in Anchorage.

The following wee we had our June SPE Board of Directors meeting which was quite successful. But you are probably more interested in seeing the pictures of our long weekend in between these SPE activities!

Jan and I drove to Talkeetna, flew around Denali (North America's tallest mountain in a 6.2 MILLION acre national park) and landed on a glacier. We toured the park and went river rafting. We saw moose, red fox, Dall sheep and many other animals. We Went to the massive Wrangell-St. Elias National park (which is the size of Yellowstone, Yosemite and SWITZERLAND combined). We toured the abandoned Kennecott copper mine. We hiked a lot. A LOT. We drove to Valdez and took a cruise to the Columbia glacier seeing orcas, sea lions, seals, porpoises, sea otters and a huge variety of birds including plenty of bald eagles.

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Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 10,143 miles. SPE travel to date 346,145 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 36
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Ecuador
France
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
India
Ireland
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Spain
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 6 Operas to date = 48

Posted by fracmeister 16:14 Archived in Ireland Comments (0)

April 2016: Spain to Stavanger to Salt Lake to Saudi Arabia

With stops in Ireland, Belgium and Amsterdam!

OK, I know when people read these blogs you are probably thinking "Wow, that must be a lot of fun!" Sometimes I could argue and point out the various travails and lack of time between meetings, etc. But not this time. This month was great.

Spain

Madrid

We were just back from my trip to KL for a few days when it was time to hit the road again. First stop Madrid. While there are a few SPE members there this trip was mainly about our sister societies of SEG and AAPG where I was speaking in a plenary session in Barcelona.

In Madrid we saw a Wagner opera at their amazing opera house, toured the Prada and Thyssen museums, saw the Templo de Debod (a fantastic story of an ancient Egyptian temple that would have been destroyed with the construction of the Aswan dam but then relocated to the center of Madrid!). We managed a 14 course meal at a Michelin 2* restaurant and went to the LDS temple. It was cold enough that we had theChurros con Chocolate (basically churros you could dip in a super thick hot chocolate). Yum.

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Barcelona

Madrid is far more laid back than Barcelona. The one tourist thing you MUST do in Barcelona is to tour the Basilica of the Sagrada Familia. I have been to many churches, temples, mosques, etc in my life but nothing was like this place. Under construction for many decades, it is still incomplete. but they continue to work on it. Plan on 3-4 hours. Wow!

The rest of the town is great. Huge old section of the city promises to get you lost as you explore it, the waterfront, the hills. My wife explored it much better than I did because I spent my time at the conference. We did get to eat the paella.

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After Spain we had an all too short trip to Dublin, Ireland.

Dublin

I expected to like Dublin but I had no idea how much I would love it. I met with many of the section members, leaders and students and was a keynote speaker at a large section meeting combined with another group. We were given a tour of the University College Dublin including the book of Kells and the Long Room. I made a presentation at the University of Dublin. Jan and I toured the city and its many churches and sights. We ate the great food and took a quick trip to the countryside. I cannot wait to go back.

The trip was short because we needed to get to Stavanger, Norway for the SPE International Conference on Health, Safety, Security and Social Responsibility where I participated in student, YP and Plenary events. We did have to get there for the weekend (instead of touring Dublin) since my granson was getting baptized. We did some touring with that family of four super fun boys. One spot we toured was to a WWII era embankment where the Germans built fortified areas for their sea-facing cannons. The boys had a blast climbing all over everything.
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The SPE section President is Donal Meehan. Of course my first name is Donald. So here we are!

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We had a short trip in Dublin because we had to get to Stavanger, Norway. For SPE I was speaking and participating in many ways (plenary speaker, students, YPs, etc.) in the SPE "Getting to Zero" conference on Health, Safety, Environment and Social Responsibility. I also was going to see our four grandsons including the one who was getting baptized. We toured the Norway sights and our little goofballs climbed all over the countryside. We tasted the local food and my daughter and my gf did a little shopping.

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Then off to Amsterdam.

Belgium

Well, we had some meetings fall apart in the middle of the trip so we decided to kill a few days in Belgium where we could see a few operas. Can't fly home in the middle of the trip! Because of security issues the Brussels airport was still closed so we went to . We caught two operas, toured these wonderful cities and tried the best of the local cuisine.
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And now Liege pics

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Driving back we went right by the Atomium.
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Den Haag and Amsterdam

Most of the Den Haag appointments are rescheduled but we have friends at Delft University. We met at the Mauritshuis museum and the amazing MC Escher museum.
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There is also an LDS temple in Den Haag
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The tulips were amazing as well.
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In Amsterdam after the meetings we caught another opera.

Houston

Back in Houston it was flooding. Seriously flooding with water half way up our lawn. We were oblivious until we had to go WAY around to get home. My presentation to the Permian Basin study group on the other side of town took hours to get to as I headed northeast to get to a location well southwest of my home. Attendance was good however.

Provo

My youngest son was graduating from college. We saw friends in SLC where I had recently addressed the University of Utah, BYU and SPE sections. I had to race away from graduation to catch a flight to Denver and thence to Frankfurt and Saudi Arabia.

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Saudi Arabia

The Saudi section has done an admirable job in building up their annual technical symposium and it now is one of the premier SPE events worldwide. I spoke at the women's section of Energy4me and toured Saudi Aramco. I was a keynote speaker in the opening session and I have to say the hospitality they extended to me was absolutely amazing. I had a chance to meet with various senior executives and participate(!) in their cultural events. I am looking forward to returning.

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As a reward for going through all these pics, here are two videos from the SPE ATSE cultural event. The young girls dancing and singing is adorable. I am featured as the "Saudi groom" in the next video. I hope you enjoy them.

When I returned to Houston we caught two more operas in Houston!

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 31,528 miles. SPE travel to date 336,997 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 36
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Ecuador
France
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
India
Ireland
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Spain
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 6 Operas to date = 48

Posted by fracmeister 17:00 Archived in Saudi Arabia Comments (0)

March 2016: Around the world again. From Dallas to KL

An exceptional month with no breaks in the action

Well, here is the map. Another "Around the World" trip.
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Fort Worth

We began the month at the SPE/IADC drilling conference in my old stomping ground of Fort Worth, TX! I love this place and really enjoyed being back. XTO Energy has revitalized many of the historic buildings. The attendance was great in spite of the declining numbers of drilling rigs. I had the honor of giving a keynote address. I covered this in the last blog but we go straight from there to the SPE Board meeting started Sunday afternoon we had a weekend together!

Richardson, TX

The SPE Board of Directors meets three times annually with more committee meetings. One meeting is at the location of the Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition. The SPE President gets to select the other two. So far I am a "complete failure" in my selections. My initial choices were Hong Kong (ruled out due to price) and Lagos, Nigeria (visas and security complexities). So I went for Dubrovnic and Anchorage. Then, with the layoffs at SPE I felt like we needed to do a further cost savings and relocated the Dubrovnic meeting to SPE Headquarters in Richardson.

The meetings in Richardson were great and Jan and I did catch an opera there. Not too many pictures unfortunately.

We returned home JUST in time to fly to Frankfurt Germany for the beginning of a long trip.

Here is a zoomed in map for just the European portion.
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Germany

Frankfurt, Wiesbaden, Gottingen, Clausthal and Hanover

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We spent a night in Frankfurt and caught an opera before heading to Gottingen. I have of course been to Frankfurt's airport many times and either laid over or had subsequent trips to other places in Germany (Celle in particular). But this time I have a weekend day with my wife so we toured the city and it is far more interesting than the business visitor (I) could have imagined. Many great historical items, great museums, wonderful restaurants, etc. We made a side trip to the city of Wiesbaden for another opera. Two nights was great. On the way out of town we drove by the LDS Temple being renovated.
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The University at Gottingen was the next stop and it is a truly fascinating place with an amazing and historic university.

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TU Clausthal is an historic mining university holding a multiple university SPE gathering where I spoke and participated in various activities. Clausthal is sort of in the middle of nowhere but the students were enthusiastic and highly engaged.
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We next went to Hanover to catch a plane but naturally there was one more opera to be seen.
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We next went to Hanover to catch a plane but naturally there was one more opera to be seen.

Aberdeen

From Hanover we flew through LHR to Aberdeen. The SPE manages the Offshore Achievement Awards and it is a pretty big deal. The men are all wearing kilts or tuxedos (I opted for the latter since I don't own a kilt). All quite formal and an elaborate ceremony. I also met with YPs, section leaders and BHI people.

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Paris

From Aberdeen we flew to Paris. The Institut Francais du Petrole (IFP) has a marvelous location and access to an amazing facility for the multi-university SPE activity over the weekend. Jan and I met and had an amazing dinner at a very historic location with the section officers. We also caught an opera at the Palais Garnier, calling on an old friend to help me get tickets for this very sold out event.
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Jan stayed in Paris and my daughter, her husband and four of the grandsons flew down from Norway to join her at Paris Disneyland. Not me! Next stop OTC Asia!

Kuala Lumpur

OTC Asia is quite a large event in which SPE plays a major role. My favorite part was a meeting with many of the students from many different universities. SPE students attended the event in disproportionately high numbers compared to the other professional societies who sponsor OTC with us.
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Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 24,456 miles. SPE travel to date 305,469 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 34
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Ecuador
France
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
India
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 4 Operas to date = 42

Posted by fracmeister 12:48 Archived in France Comments (0)

Penn State, W. Va, OSU, MUST, Tulsa, KS, Fracturing, Butte

A lot of travel in the US.

I wound up with a pretty busy time with domestic only travel. Travel to SPE Headquarters for the Finance & Strategy and nominating committees and a Town Hall for the staff. Los Angeles for a KIN Catalyst session. A great trip to Penn State and West Virginia Universities. Then a trip to the University of Kansas, the Missouri University of Science and Technology, Oklahoma State University and the University of Tulsa and Tulsa sections. Another trip to Montana (Butte) for an SPE Summit and back to DFW for the IADC/SPE conference in Fort Worth and a Board meeting in Richardson.
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Naturally we have a #SPElfie !
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I not only barbecue, I bake. Here is my applie pie.
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At the University of Kansas! Rock, Chalk, Jayhawk!
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KU #SPElfie

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At the Missouri University of Science and Technology at Rolla with a few #SPElfie s

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Then on to Oklahoma State with a great group of students and an obligatory stop at Stillwater's jumpin' little juke joint for some cheese fries.large_2016-02-17_18_09_10.jpg
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The University of Tulsa gave me extensive tours of their production, artificial lift, flow loop and drilling labs. I spoke to a large group of students and then participated at an industry event that evening at the Gilchrease museum.

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Nice to have some shots with Baker Hughes mud and ESPs!

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My old friend Eddie Schell's children all attended Tulsa including this petroleum engineer.
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Our favorite native American artist is Allan Houser.This is his greatest work now on loan at the museum.

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Raised a Bob WIlls fan I had to visit Cain's ballroom in Tulsa.

Great trip to Butte Montana for a Rocky Mountain student symposium. Students were enthusiastic and we toured the old mine.
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They put on a big barbecue for us including beef brisket and a whole hog.

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Ran into the daughter of an old friend,

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Back in Houston we saw the Rockets lose again.

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Off to Fort Worth for the IADC/SPE conference and saw many friends
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I absolutely love Fort Worth and the weather was great.
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The water gardens are a must see park downtown.
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Jan and I took our young kids to the museum school in Ft Worth and now we take our grandchildren there. A photo by the turtle is obligatory.

Went to Dallas to see Manon (the opera by Massenet)
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A few shots at Longoria's barbecue.
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And of course a stop at the symphony at the Bass Hall in Ft Worth
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A few more #SPElfie s
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Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 3,137 miles. SPE travel to date 281,013 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 33
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Ecuador
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
India
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 5 Operas to date = 38

Posted by fracmeister 07:05 Archived in Belgium Comments (0)

A quiet December, January easy going

Just a few short trips!

sunny

The first 10 days of December was spent in Saudi Arabia and Qatar and described in the previous blog entry. I had plenty of SPE projects writing articles, nominating committees, schedule planning and making assignments. A week long trip scheduled for mid-December got postponed. I was happy for that as it allowed me to spend some time with my grandsons. We built a few gingerbread houses, I barbecued and smoked a turkey. The daughter from Norway, her drilling engineer husband and four sons visited twice. The daughter from Austin came along with my physics major son and my youngest daughter---made for a nice Christmas celebration. Football and Star Wars rounded it out along with a couple operas.

Nice to see Stanford win big in the Rose Bowl.

Datuk Mohd. Anuar, a senior Petronas executive and I conducted a "Virtual Town Hall" meeting. It was in the morning in Asia so from 8:30 to 10 pm here in Houston. The technology went well and we had 2,000 people listening and viewing at more than a dozen locations.

Drove to SPE Headquarters in Richardson, TX to address the SPE staff and participate in the Finance & Strategy Committee meeting and the Board Nominating meeting. We selected the new SPE Board members and 2018 SPE President from an impressive slate of nominees. After Board approval in March these will be published in the April JPT.

I made a presentation in Houston at a very well attended Reservoir Study Group.

I flew to Los Angeles to participate in a KIN Catalyst sponsored meeting. The subject was climate change.

I am a long-time member of the World Oil Advisory Board and participated in their annual oil forecast.

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 3,137 miles. SPE travel to date 281,013 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 33
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Ecuador
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
India
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 3 Operas to date = 33

Posted by fracmeister 07:04 Archived in Bahrain Comments (0)

India! Saudi Arabia! Qatar!

Now this was a wild one.


View Russia Baku on fracmeister's travel map.

I had just returned from Quito, Ecuador on a Friday and headed to India the next day at noon.
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But first on Saturday morning I was going to a Cub Scout pancake breakfast and went to pick up my sister. Tourists in a minivan decided to make a left turn in front of me. She said she didn't see me. I saw her, but even with my anti-lock brakes kicked in I just couldn't stop. Fortunately I was only going about 20 mph but that was enough to deploy the air bags and leave me with some bruises. Have to admit I was anxious about hopping on airplanes for more than 18 hours. But (as I write this over Pakistan) I just feel the normal level of soreness for such a long flight.

INDIA

It takes a long time to get there and I didn't arrive until late Sunday night. Arrived in Mumbai but immediately headed to Pune to visit SPE students at Maharashtra Institute of Technology.... the other MIT. These are brilliant students and the school has an amazing reputation.

That night, back in Mumbai we had a dinner with planners for the SPE Oil and Gas India Conference and Exhibition (OGIC). I spoke at the opening ceremony and presented awards...spoke with Young Professionals, students and teachers, local section members and leaders, etc.

Next off to Delhi and Dehradun. I had not previously known much about the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies, but it is also a very impressive school with an amazing group of students. I am the first SPE President to visit UPES.

Next stop (through Delhi In Kolkata for the weekend although a delayed flight meant I arrived at the hotel at 1:30 am. Sunday morning I woke up to watch (on the computer) my beloved Stanford Cardinal beat Notre Dame in a last second win. My Sooners also beat Oklahoma State handily and look assured to be in the Championship. On Monday it was off by train to Dhanbad at the Indian School of Mines. Wow! I am amazed at the size and number of engineering schools as well as the enthusiasm of the students.

The three schools, ISM, UPES and MIT all received the 2015 SPE Outstanding Student Chapter Awards. Based on my observations they were definitely deserving of this recognition.

After ISM it was back to Kolkata for a flight to Dammam.

My travel in India...Zoomed in.
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Pics at the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies (UPES)
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They had a kite flying activity in which anti-terror messages are written on the kites.
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Another SPElfie at MIT, Pune

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At the Oil and Gas Conference in India the Energy Minister and I spoke at the opening. Here he is at the Baker Hughes booth.

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SPE sponsors Energy4me.org workshops. Over 200 students plus 40 teachers and helpers learned all about the oil and gas industry. large_2015-11-25_12_19_07.jpg
This SPElfie is with the local section leaders. large_2015-11-25_20_31_34.jpg

SAUDI ARABIA

It took most of the day to get from Kolkata to Dammam and I arrived just in time to participate on the Saudi Section meeting. His Excellency Dr. Tawfig Fawzan Alrabiah was the speaker and I was really impressed with him. He is the Minister of Commerce and Industry and spoke informally and interactively with a large number of people.

The next morning it was off to tour the massive Manifa Field. Development of the field required building dozens of drilling islands and the complex is designed to produce 900,000 B/D. The environmental aspects were quite impressive and I couldn't help but see how dramatically smaller the environmental impact of this project is to similar volumes (reserves?) projects in the US like the Bakken, Eagle Ford and and Permian unconventionals. I was very pleased to have this opportunity.

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2015-12-02 08.58.46

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After the amazing tour hosted by Saudi Aramco, I flew to Jeddah to visit the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) located in Thuwal. I had met their President Jean-Lou Chameau in Oman. We had several things in common---we are both Stanford PhDs and we both met our wives at Georgia Tech. I met mine when we were students there; he was Provost! Nonetheless, KAUST has a great(!) petroleum engineering program in spite of it being quite new. Students come from all around the world. Their super-computing, nanotechnology, combustion, extreme computing and other state-of-the art labs are amazing for a school with only about 1,000 students. Former UT Department head Tadeusz W. Patzek is the petroleum engineering head there. I met an amazing group of faculty.

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2015-12-03 14.28.43

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It is hard for me to overstate how impressed I was with this University. It was the most amazing University visit I have had in a long time. The atmosphere was at once electric with collaboration and enthusiasms and then almost charming as you see children and families enjoying themselves in this beach side location.

The weather was awesome.

Finally it was off to Doha for IPTC.

QATAR

The International Petroleum Technology Conference is organized to further the advancement of scientific and technological knowledge related to the exploration, development, production, transportation and processing of oil and natural gas, and rotates between Doha, Qatar and the Asia Pacific region. I gave several speeches and met with local students including those at Texas A&M Qatar. Each of the Society Presidents from SPE, EAGE, SEG and AAPG were there so it was naturally time for SPElfie.

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I met old friends like Ali Al Jarwan of DM-OPCO.
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Naturally there were plenty of SPElfies with students at IPTC and at Texas A&M Qatar.

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The nonstop Qatar Airways flight from Doha to Houston takes a long time but I was thrilled to get on the plane knowing that I would at last be home. I had only been home five days out of the previous 59 days. Fortunately December looks much better!

Here is a quick picture of the ME travel portion.
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Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 23,922 miles. SPE travel to date 277,876 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 33
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Ecuador
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
India
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 0 Operas to date = 30

Posted by fracmeister 06:02 Archived in India Comments (0)

Quito, Ecuador, Dallas, Austin Oklahoma City

Heading to India later in November so these trips are just warmups.


View Russia Baku on fracmeister's travel map.

Quito

The SPE Latin American and Caribbean Petroleum Engineering Conference (LACPEC) is the major E&P conference in the region. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to present a keynote address, present awards, meet with students and local industry leaders. I have always enjoyed Quito. Here with student Chapter leaders and faculty from five local Universities.
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I attended a BBQ with local industry leaders.
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The YP leaders from around the region had a workshop; I had a keynote address.
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I had an afternoon as a tourist and have way too many pictures to include.

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In addition to Quito I had a few domestic trips in between my last long trip and my next one!
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Back in the USA

On the day I landed from Azerbaijan we went to the Houston Grand Opera's performance of Tosca. Tosca is of course a favorite 'first' opera. Puccini's music is great and the story is hyper melodramatic... jailbreak, two suicides, torture, attempted rape, a murder and an execution. Yes, all the components for a great opera. We went to Dallas the next day for an opera (Great Scott). Friday night in Houston we went to a third opera in 8 days, Eugene Onegin.

I visited the University of Texas and spoke to a massive group of students and answered questions at length.
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I went to the University of Houston with another group of petroleum engineering students. They also had a lot of questions and were very engaging.

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Finally, I went to the University of Oklahoma over the weekend just before my trip to Quito. We toured impressive labs, met various faculty members and really enjoyed the art museums. The Roman busts from the Capitoline museum were great. I really enjoyed the Adkins collection but I was blown away by the impressionistic art at the Weitzenhoffer collection. The display left me with a much warmer feeling than seeing these masterpieces in a typical museum setting.
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We toured OU and spent a lot of time at the amazing Galileo exhibition at the library. Seeing the original works by Copernicus, Brahe, Newton, Einstein, Euler, Kepler and more... it was really powerful. The library has very classical study study rooms and immersive 3-D visualization.

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We went into OKC for dinner with local industry leaders and ate atop the impressive Devon towers. Here is the lobby.
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Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 6,266 miles. SPE travel to date 254,110 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 32
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Ecuador
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 3 Operas to date = 30

Posted by fracmeister 17:18 Archived in Ecuador Comments (0)

W VA, BALI, RUSSIA, AZERBAIJAN

Another trip around the world.


View Russia Baku on fracmeister's travel map.

This was an exhausting but exciting trip. It was the first really big trip following becoming SPE President and it set the standard for trips to come.

Eastern Regional Meeting, Morgantown, W. Virginia

The first stop was a flight to Pittsburgh and a drive to Morgantown where I addressed SPE members at the Eastern Regional Meeting.

I then drove back to Pittsburgh and flew to Chicago where I caught up with my wife and college roommate. No opera, but we did see Evgeny Kissin with the Chicago Symphony. Kissin is an amazing pianist. Here we are out for a walk.
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BALI

From Chicago to Hong Kong and then to Denpasar, Bali for the Asia Pacific Oil and Gas Conference (APOCGE). I had a full schedule with multiple small meetings, addressing the Young Professionals Workshop and participating in an Executive Panel Session "Riding the Oil Price Storm." I met with many industry leaders including Datuk Mohd Anuar Taib, Senior Vice President, Upstream Malaysia, PETRONAS. I gave the opening welcome at APOCGE, presented awards, gave the opening remarks at Petrobowl, presented certificates to the Student paper contest participants, gave welcoming remarks at the Education Day for students and teachers, presented tokens of appreciation to Organising Committee Chairs and Co-Chairs, Petrobowl awards, etc,. The conference was a great success with more than 1,000 participants from 44 countries. Just a few pictures.
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Moscow

I have been to Moscow many times before but this was a first with the spousal unit. We flew all night from Bali to Moscow through Singapore and arrived early in the morning. Of course the first time you go to Moscow you have to go to Red Square, see the Kremlin, St. Basil's, etc. and we spent Friday afternoon and the weekend as tourists in earnest. Pictures after I mention what I did on SPE and Baker Hughes business.

I gave the opening Plenary speech at the Russia Petroleum Technology Conference and met with some Rossneft officials. Presented Regional Service awards to a lot of people. Met with Bashneft executives. Went to Gubkin University for a tour and addressing students from four sections including the visiting University of Leoben students. Toured Gubkin and my wife joined me for a very impressive tour of Lomonosv Moscow State University. It was great.

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These are the Bolshoi. After its update, it's an amazing site.

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Selfie with the Kremlin in the background.

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Plenty of churches!

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Cruise at night.

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In the Kremlin.

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Selfie with Lenin

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It is astonishing how many very familiar places there are in Moscow for Americans. We have seen it so many times in movies.

Met more executives from Rossneft and Lukoil.

Two operas including one at the Bolshoi. Opera summary later.

Now few SPElfies including shots of Lomonosov.

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This guy's name is Genghis Khan. Seriously

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St. Petersburg

In Saint Petersburg we spent another weekend and had some serious tourist time. I also met with the St. petersburg SPE section leaders and students from both the Mining University and Saint Petersburg State University.

The Hermitage. So many wonderful churches and museums. Four operas in three separate opera houses (see below).

Spelfies with the students.

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Catherine's Palace (the summer home...one of them). Way too many pictures to post.
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The Hermitage. CRAWLING with old masters. Michelangelo, Da Vinci. A giant room full of Rembrandts. A huge wing of Dutch masters. It is gigantic.
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Saint Petersburg was great. We also had excellent food there. Wonderful and historic. THREE great opera houses.

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Baku

Last stop! EARLY flight connecting through Moscow and we arrive in historic Baku. I spoke at the student development program and gave lectures at the local student chapters and participated in another reception. I opened the SPE conference with a speech, gave out more awards, met with a few local operators. I had the chance to engage with the students from four countries at the Student Summit and address a large group at the Baku Higher Oil School.

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Baku is an amazing city. I was stunned at the architecture and the great history. Awesome.

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OPERA SUMMARY

I thought I would give you either a brief synopsis or some Lessons learned from the Operas I have seen in the last ten days.

Moscow New Opera Romeo and Juliette Charles Gounod
Two teenagers sneak off together, four people die in less than a week. A good cautionary tale.

Moscow Bolshoi Iolantha Tchaikovsky
His last opera. Blind girl tricked into regaining her sight. Still not sure how that worked. Standard boyfriend swap. Short opera so the orchestra started with a 30 minute "Best of the Nutcracker." Still can't get it out of my head.

Saint Petersburg Mariinsky 1 Christmas Eve Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Not like any Christmas Eve I remember. Satan steals the moon. Hero wins the girl with the help of royal footwear. Best part is that there is a beekeeper. Now that is a nice touch.

Saint Petersburg Mariinsky 2 War and Peace Sergei Prokofiev
Natasha makes a bad choice in boyfriends. Russians good, French bad. Napoleon especially bad.

Saint Petersburg Mikhailovsky Queen of Spades Tchaikovsky
Hernan is an idiot. Don't drop the girl and bet all your money on some dream. Don't you know all faro tables are crooked?

Saint Petersburg Mariinsky 1 La forza del destino Verdi
Alvaro learns that when he kills somebody he needs to make sure they are dead. He also needs a serious review on the rules of safe firearm handling. Peasants may not have a great life but boy do they like to sing.

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 27,250 mile. SPE travel to date 237,744 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 31
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 6 Operas to date = 27

Posted by fracmeister 12:24 Archived in Russia Comments (0)

Utah and California

(Quick trips!)

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In this trip I visited the Salt Lake City Section and student chapters at the University of Utah and Brigham Young University. It was cool because I got to see my youngest son who is a physics major at BYU. I joined the BYU students for a football game.

My first stop was a barbecue sponsored by the U of Utah student section where I received a shirt.
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I then had a great tour of the nanofabrication labs and then went to EGI.
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In the evening I was able to help give the Regional Service award to my friend Arnis Judzis. Also helped deliver some of the scholarships the section gave to SPE members including one who had traveled from Butte, Montana!

The next AM we spent at EGI meeting with petroleum engineering faculty, students and researchers.
large_IMG_5827.jpg In the afternoon it was off to Provo for a tailgate with the BYU students and a football game.
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This picture is only about half of the attendees because they came and went in the hours before the game. We had plenty of time to discuss career options.

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Over the weekend we enjoyed being in Salt Lake City and I headed to California... The gf returned home.

I then flew to Santa Monica to participate in a KIN Catalyst session on Creating a new multi-Stakeholder beginning in unconventional oil and gas. This diverse group of people seeks to better use energy resources and serve as a focal point for rational discussions of what we should do to develop unconventional oil and gas.

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 3.301 mile. SPE travel to date 210,494 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 29
Australia
Austria
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 0 Operas to date = 21

Posted by fracmeister 10:28 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Houston! Great to be home for a few weeks!

I go from President-elect to President

The SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition (ATCE) is the big annual meeting for the Society of Petroleum Engineers. This year's Houston meeting was a huge success. I spent less time on the exhibit floor than normal! The SPE Board meeting precedes the ATCE and as the incoming President my schedule is hectic. I will leave out all the committee meetings, filming of videos, teleprompter practices, etc. However, we do have some fun. On Thursday night we had a dinner at the home of Roger Hite, an old friend and incoming Director. My gf has also made many friends on these SPE trips and it was fun for her to see old friends.

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The Board meetings started for me on Wednesday AM and continued in earnest through Sunday. I spoke many times for the Board, as a keynote at the R&D Technical section, at the Presidential luncheon, recording welcoming greetings for various upcoming meetings, speaking to the YPs at their reception, kicking off the Petrobowl, leading the industry advisory board discussion, etc. Helge turned the gavel over to me on Wednesday and I gave my first speech as SPE President.

Along the way I had a LOT of #SPElfies taken and have published over 75 of them here.

Here are a couple for fun. I will add a lot more ATCE 2015 pictures in a separate post.
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These are the U of H students

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Finally, as my first act as SPE President I spoke to a Baker Hughes audience for their annual technology awards banquet.

It wouldn't be long for my Presidential year to kick off in full swing as I left for Utah and California the next morning!

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip was just back and forth to downtown so I didn't add any! SPE travel to date 207,193 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 29
Australia
Austria
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 0 Operas to date = 21

Posted by fracmeister 09:12 Archived in Brunei Comments (0)

Around the world (again)

Malaysia, Brunei, Vietnam, Thailand, Italy, Switzerland, Brussels, Qatar, Germany

Another big trip.
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First off to Malaysia via Qatar. Unfortunately I arrived at 8:30 in the morning and barely got to my hotel in time to go to the first luncheon talk in KL.
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I toured the SPE offices and spoke to the staff.
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I gave a Presentation to Young Professionals of the SPE Kuala Lumpur Section on the topic “The Shifting Energy Landscape: How Young Professionals can turn crisis into opportunity for long term career growth.”
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The anxieties about employment and the future are global for the petroleum industry. I met with section officers and discussed their great results.
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I finally met with my friend Dato’ Wee Yiaw Hin, Executive Vice President & CEO, Upstream for Petronas. I had a long visit with the UCSI Student Chapter.

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Then it was off to Brunei. Landed at midnight and it was pretty late when I arrived at the hotel. My driver showed up EARLY for the drive to BSP. There I met with Brunei Shell Head Office staff in the morning, made a lunchtime presentation and with SPE members and SPE YP. I had a visit with the Shell MD, Andrew Faulkner. Drove back to Bandar for dinner with SPE members from Total, BSP, etc.
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The next AM (early) I met with students at ITB and their newly formed student chapter.

Drove to Miri and met with other SPE members and then flew back to KL.

Made a presentation to Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) Student Chapter and then to Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) Student Chapter.

Universiti Teknologi MARA is the largest University in Malaysia and has a relatively recently formed student chapter. They were not yet in school! However I had a huge turnout including many of them who took a half day off from their internships to attend. One SPELFIE with the group and one with the student SPE chapter leaders.
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The Universiti Teknologi Malaysia is a solid two hour drive away on a good day and is not yet in session. So I met some of their students at the SPE office.
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More meetings with local members. Then south of KL I participated in and spoke at the SPE Reservoir Testing to Add Production Value Workshop.

Then off to Vietnam with the first stop in Hanoi. My wife flew in via South Korea and met me there; she traveled with me for the remainder of the trip. We had various meetings with the senior executives of PetroVietnam including Nguyen Quoc Khanh, President and CEO of PetroVietnam Group and Dr. Do Van Khanh, President and CEO of PetroVietnam Exploration Production Corporation and then to the Hanoi University of Mining & Geology (HUMG). We flew south to Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) and met with the Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology (HCMUT) Student Chapter.

Students were very enthusiastic.
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Eight students from PetroVietNam University made the four hour trek to come see me.
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One of the bigger SPELFIES!
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It was a big crowd.

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The new student chapter leaders.
I have some great videos of a performer at HCMUT.

Met with the SPE section officers spoke at the section meeting.
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Then off to Bangkok. We stayed at a great hotel with a great view and my old ExxonMobil friend now living in PNG came to visit.
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Dinner with section officers. The car came to pick me up at 6:00 PM for the 7:00 PM dinner 4 miles away. Two and a half hours later I arrived at dinner. I should have walked! Bangkok traffic can be hard to take.

Up early the next morning for a long drive to make a presentation at Suranaree University of Technology (SUT) Student Chapter. They were enthusiastic and it was a large group.
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My wife stayed in the city, took a Thai cooking class, boat tours, etc. Back to Bangkok for a welcome Dinner hosted by PTTEP executives. I participated in and gave a keynote at PTTEP Knowledge Management Week 2015, Theme: Sustainable Growth and Efficiency thru Technology and Innovation. Met with Phongsthorn Thavisin, Executive Vice President, Technology and Sustainability Development Group, PTTEP. That day my wife was a tourist courtesy of our gracious hosts.

I then did some Baker Hughes things in Thailand meeting with our staff and customers. large_2015-09-10_15_35_17.jpg

Finally, another presentation at Chulalongkorn University Chapter Student Chapter. large_another_spelfie.jpglarge_spelfie_chulalongkorn.jpg

The off to Brussels, Belgium for a weekend day and then SPE meetings in Milan. I met with a group of Young Professionals and students from Politecnico di Torino. I met with ENI executives and toured their immense laboratories. We had a great Section meeting that night.

It was live cast to other sites. We had 61 people attending locally and 46 remote participants from 19 locations. The largest remote group was from Nigeria but there were participants from the UK, Angola, Ecuador, Turkmenistan, etc.

Our hosts took us to the Milan Expo where we saw many great pavilions. WAY too many photos to post so I will add a link later.
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Then a drive to Lugano to fly to Geneva for an SPE meeting celebrating their 10th anniversary. But at Lugano our flight was cancelled so we took three trains, arriving at 1:30 AM. I had lunch with the section officers, met with the senior management at Addax Petroleum and spoke to the energetic section meeting. large_IMG_5628.jpg

Then home to Houston via Frankfurt.

The good news is that after that I am in Houston for two weeks. Of course they are nearly full-time SPE since it is our Board meeting and the Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition.

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 28,023 SPE travel to date 207,193 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 29
Australia
Austria
Bahrain
Belgium
Brunei
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
Italy
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Qatar
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Switzerland
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA
Vietnam

Operas this month = 0 Operas to date = 21

Posted by fracmeister 03:56 Archived in Vietnam Comments (1)

Napa! Fiber optics, lasers and reservoir and well monitoring

See, this job isn't all international travel.

The big travel in August starts near the end of the month on a record setting trip I am still planning. As a result I only have a quick trip for the first half of August. I participated in the SPE Distributed Fiber-Optic Sensing for Well, Reservoir and Facilities Management Workshop held in Napa, CA. In-well fiber optic installations have expanded and offer unique insights in wellbore monitoring. It was a real privilege to participate in and help kick off this workshop. I came away realizing that even in low cost environments, service companies and operators still need to take the long view on technology and that what was once a science fair project can rapidly become a money maker when applied correctly.

There were a lot of participants and sponsors at this workshop. The most interesting part for me was the level of advancements in Distributed Acoustic Sensing and how many ways it is being applied.

On the way home I had just enough time to take a picture.

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No university visits on this trip. No opera. I did stay home long enough to grill a few steaks and harvest some honey from my beehives.
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More grilling pics at the end.

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 3,359 SPE travel to date 179,170 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 22
Australia
Austria
Bahrain
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA

Operas this month = 0 Operas to date = 21

Grilling pics

Grilled zucchini, red onions, red and green peppers from the garden, corn for the salad and the steaks. Details on the bbq blog referenced earlier.
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Hatch chiles are now in season. I made green chile cheeseburgers with a home made green chile salsa, hatch/smoked chicken chili, green chile cornbread... all of it involved smoking or grilling. My favorites.
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Plenty of colorful chiles besides the Hatch chile.
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You roast the Hatch chiles, put them in a ziploc to "sweat" them and then remove the tough (now charred) outer skin.
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And roasted corn is awesome.

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Posted by fracmeister 19:46 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Bogota, Santa Fe, San Antonio

The journey continues


View Bogota July 2015 on fracmeister's travel map.

Three great cities and some time for fun on the weekends.

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It was nice to be home over the US Independence Day celebration. Some of my children and all of my grandchildren were here. I cooked a lot of barbecue and harvested some honey from my beehives. Then it was time to get on another airplane!
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My BBQ for Independence Day!

The SPE Latin American Health, Safety, Environment and Sustainability Conference was held 7-8 July 2015 in Bogota. This conference explored state-of-the-art technologies and their effects on Sustainability (Balancing Economic Growth, Social Development and Environmental Protection). It addressed outstanding challenges and experiences in Health, Safety, Environmental and Sustainability for successful execution of oil and gas projects.

This gathering explored and discussed what has worked, what not worked, and areas where future technological innovations are required to strengthen the social license to operate. It also provided an opportunity to networking, sharing and learning from professionals in the industry.

Topics included:
-HSE Management
-Health and Safety
-Environment
-Sustainability
-Innovation

On Monday I made multiple visits with Baker Hughes colleagues to Ecopetrol, Pacific Rubiales and Equion. More SPE meetings. Tuesday I gave an opening speech at the conference, a press conference, meetings with oil company executives. On Wednesday I met with old friends, had a meeting with Ecopetrol CEO Javier Gutiérrez and made presentations at the local SPE section. Bogota is an amazing city at an altitude of a little more than 8,300 feet.
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Spelfie with some of the students attending the conference
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The iguana is the symbol of ECOPETROL. This one is in their lobby. Selfie at the end.

Grandsons came to visit. Always fun times. I have seven grandsons. Here is the youngest.
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The gf and I took a week off from the craziness and cashed in some hotel points and enjoyed three operas in beautiful Santa Fe, New Mexico. We toured the area including Los Alamos and ate our favorite Mexican food (New Mexico style!). We took a couple cooking classes to learn the Santa Fe style. It was great.

Then back to SPE activities as I spoke at URTEC the big multi-society unconventional resources conference in San Antonio. Jan and I enjoyed returning to San Antonio and I learned a lot about what operators are doing in the lower price environments. Summary: we are NOT running out of ideas!

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Here I am with the current SEG President.

I had a chance at the end of the San Antonio trip to drive around and see the former missions there. Pictures at the end.

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here.

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 6,289 SPE travel to date 175,811 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 22
Australia
Austria
Bahrain
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Germany
Kuwait
Indonesia
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA

Operas this month = 3 Operas to date = 21

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I did get a chance to do some smoking when I was at home....

San Antonio Pictures

The video is of Johnny Stout feeding some deer. He is a custom knifemaker and old friend. http://www.stoutknives.com/ for some amazing custom knives.

We also had a nice dinner with my college roommate and his wife and went to the Gruene dance hall Friday night. Then took the Austin grandsons to Schlitterbahn (ALL DAY) Saturday. We returned home exhausted at midnight and looking forward to being at the office this next week!

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The rest are at the San Antonio missions. Of course the Alamo is the most famous. Can you name the others?
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This is a part of an old aqueduct serving the missions

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In Santa Fe we saw three operas at the great opera house and saw (and bought) some nice art.

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At Bandolier National Mounument

Posted by fracmeister 08:00 Archived in Colombia Comments (0)

June in Canada, Mexico and...

Another busy month

It has been my privilege to present the one-hour ethics class for several years at the Society of Petroleum Evaluation Engineers (SPEE) annual meeting. This year's meeting was in Halifax and I have some great photos at the end of the blog. It is a beautiful area and I preceded the SPEE trip with several SPE visits with our Canada Region SPE Director Darcy Spady. Since both of our wives were there we had some great tourist time over the weekend. The tourist stuff is with the pictures at the end.

We went to Dalhousie University and we met with multiple groups from engineering and earth sciences. We spent most of the time planning a new student chapter. The next day Darcy and I went to New Glasgow to meet multiple local SPE leaders. We also met with the local manager at Baker Hughes' office in Dartmouth.

On Saturday we were tourists and enjoyed the fact that many buildings were open that day that were not normally open to the public. I particularly liked firing an old Enfield rifle at the Citadel and touring the Government and Provincial houses. We went on a "tall ship" tour of the bay. Our whale watching trip was enjoyable but "whale free."

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The SPEE annual meeting was Sunday-Tuesday and as per usual I taught the ethics class. We had originally planned to fly directly from Halifax to Mexico City but found a way to go through Houston and spend a night at home. Of course we also found a way to spend an extra six hours in airports that day due to flight delays.

We flew to Mexico City for the SPE Board of Director's meeting. Helge Haldorsen (2015 SPE President) picked Mexico City primarily because of our expanding relationships as a Society with Mexico and secondarily because he lives there as Statoil's country manager. As you might guess it was already getting warm in Mexico in June but we had very pleasant weather in the mornings. Jan and I toured the nearby pyramids at Teotihuacan and many other local sites. We ate dinner at several wonderful restaurants including Biko and Quintonil. We saw La Traviata at the Palacio des Bellas Artes, a magnificent opera house. Photos at the end!

Of course the Board meeting was busy. Meetings with the other Presidents and SPE leaders. Audit Committee, Finance, Regional directors, technical directors, the three board committees, plenary sessions and the final board meeting. It is busy. It was great to meet various Mexican leaders of the oil and gas industry including several old friends and classmates.

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Personal note

I did get to be home a little this month which was good since we had a wedding (friends) at out house. My bees are doing well (see the photos) and the cardinals are in my backyard all the time. My jalapeños and tomatoes are being productive. I finally was home enough to fire up my smoker again and barbecue.

All of my grandchildren came together at our annual "Grammy Camp" where my wife (the grammy!) sponsors a big get together. Some in Houston and a week at the Fort Worth Museum school where our children studied so many years ago.

Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blog is here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 6,289 SPE travel to date 175,841 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 22
Australia
Austria
Bahrain
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Germany
Indonesia
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA

Operas this month = 1 Operas to date = 19

HALIFAX

Beautiful area. With a free weekend we went to Peggy's Cove, Mahone Bay, Lunenberg. The entire city of Lunenberg is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Of course we ate plenty of lobsters since this is lobster heaven. We also visited the sobering Swissair 111 memorial. A few pictures.
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There is an LDS temple in Halifax large_IMG_4828.jpg

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This boat was used to pass salt at the large table!

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Ship used as a survey vessel. On old coal fired bolt ship.

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When trying to self park at the hotel I apparently put my card in "WORNG". I love this one.

Mexico City

==
Some from the pyramid tour, the local churches and the LDS temple.

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Here are a few of the opera house.

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Here are some from the city tour
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Posted by fracmeister 22:20 Archived in Mexico Tagged mexico city pyramids halifax spe spee Comments (0)

May Indonesia, China, Malaysia, Singapore and Aggieland!

From Aggieland to Asia. OTC, Indonesia, Malaysia, China, SIngapore!


View Big Asia run May 2015 on fracmeister's travel map.

May started off simply enough. I drove to College Station and addressed a large group of students. I stayed over on Saturday AM and met with Professors Dan Hill and Ding Zhu. Naturally we needed a few spelfies. In Chinese, selfie is 自拍 and is more of a verb since 拍 is to take a picture. Just so you know.
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The next week I was "home" in Houston and spent the week at OTC. It is one of my favorite times of the year. Since photography is not allowed at OTC I just have a few shots with friends like these at the awards banquet and in our booth. Check out those pictures at the end of the post.

I spoke at a STEM (Science, Engineering, Mathematics and Technology) event with a large group of students and teachers.

But by the end of the week I was on a flight to Tokyo and then to Singapore. Although there is a great nonstop to Singapore the long way was cheaper so I took off Friday before noon and landed in Singapore Sunday just after noon. A weekend in the air. I met with local SPE leaders and spoke to the section for the first time since I was an SPE Distinguished lecturer in 1991.

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The first part of this trip was pretty hectic followed up by longer stays in Hong Kong and Beijing where my wife joined me. Unfortunately my SPE schedule was so hectic she and I were lucky to meet for dinner.

The first 10 days

Then off to to Pekanbaru via Jakarta where I drove to the Chevron Camp Hotel at Wisma Bukit in Rumbai. I had a great meeting with Chevron managers and addressed the SPE Sumatra Section Dinner Meeting .
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Another highlight was a visit to University of Islamic Riau (UIR) Student Chapter and presentation to students there. This was a large group and one quite fond of selfies!

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Then back to Jakarta and a presentation at the SPE Java Section Dinner Meeting. Then I had a great meeting with the Trisakti University and and University of Indonesia (UI) Student Chapters. It was amazing that they all turned up on a public holiday. Some of the students traveled 2-3 hours each way. Many selfies again!
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As I drove up I knew they had gone a little over the top.
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It was a great and enthusiastic group! I was amazed to see a large group of petroleum engineering students doing native dances.

Then off to Yogyakarta. I made presentations to the combined University Pembangunan Nasional (UPN) Veteran Yogyakarta and Gadjah Mada University (UGM) Student Chapters. Two of the engineering students also entertained with cultural dances. I stayed Saturday to do a little touring in this historic city. Some of those pictures are at the end.
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Next stop Kuala Lumpur and the SPE Forum on "Drilling Window Prediction and Real-Time Management: Getting It Right the First Time” where I gave a keynote address. I also attended the Asia Oil and Gas Conference sponsored by Petronas.
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I was able to spend some time at the Forum and then stayed a few days in Hong Kong because the mainland PRC appointments were scheduled the following week. This seemed a good enough reason to have the gf join me so she flew to Hong Kong and stayed with me through the following week. I did take the ferry to Shekou and participate in the the SPE Deep Water Workshop organized by SPE South China Sea Section, themed “Seeking Innovative External Solutions to Address Local Deep Water Challenges.” I had a dinner meeting with with SPE volunteers and local executives from CNOOC and IOCs.

In Beijing, I met with Dr. Wang Zhigang, Senior VP of Sinopec and other Sinopec leaders. There have been recent management changes in all of the national oil companies in China.large_IMG_4761.jpglarge_IMG_4767.jpg

I met with Dr. Wang Dongjin, Vice Chairman, President of the company and Deputy General Manager of CNPC and other CNPC leaders.
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This is me in front of the "Iron Man of Daqing" statue.
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I had a VERY large group of students attend a lecture at the China University of Petroleum in Beijing. It is the largest student chapter in the world.
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I also met with local section leaders, students from Peking University, Aramco's research center, and RIPED.

At Aramco:
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RIPED lecture
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I met with an old friend at Beijing University (BeiDa) and gave a lecture there.
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Had dinner with an old friend from Hong Kong and my wife had cooking lessons at the Hutong as well as a private 1.5 hour class from the Ritz-Carlton chef.

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Other Blogs

You can of course read about my barbecue at This site
My Baker Hughes reservoir blogis here.
My (old) blog detailing my 18 months in Hong Kong is here,

Travel this trip (basically includes airport to airport) 23,429 SPE travel to date 164,064 miles.

Countries to date (my counting rule is basically that I spent the night there with some sort of SPE content...not just went through the airport like New Zealand or Panama): 21
Australia
Austria
Bahrain
Canada
China
Colombia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Germany
Indonesia
Malaysia
Mexico
Netherlands
Norway
Oman
Saudi Arabia
Singapore
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom (Scotland, England)
USA

Operas this month = 0 Operas to date = 14

Offshore Technology Conference

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Baker Hughes had an artist do a very large painting outdoors (#Artof Innovation).
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My old classmate and former SPE President Jitendra Kikani with our friend Moussa.
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Stanford classmates Caesar Palagi and Jitendra Kikani
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Old friend and SPE Board member Analise Lara with Petrobras' OTC award.

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No, not in KL. Promoting OTC Asia.

Jakarta

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Beijing

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In front of Mao's mausoleum

Hong Kong misc

Spicy food at Hutong and a Sichuan private kitchen
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Getting a suit made
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My wife at her favorite jewelry store in Hong Kong (where I get my cufflinks made)

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One of my former Boy Scouts works in Hong Kong helping domestic workers from the Phillipines and other countries to ensure fair treatment while working there.

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Yogyakarta (tourist Saturday)

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This reminded me of a giant drill bit!

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Posted by fracmeister 12:26 Archived in China Comments (0)

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