Our group near the beer mixing tanks, the one and only Mae Palmer caught off guard.
These are old mixing tanks from years ago, when the brewery was German-owned. Now they are used to mix syrups for various soft drinks. This room reminded me of something from Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory.
Old controls with German labels.
Near the fermentation tanks. There were about 15-20 of these massive silo-like structures.
After the brewery, we went into the bottling plant and saw the entire process of canning (there were working on a fruit cocktail drink) and bottling (cleaning old bottles, bottling beer, and bottling Coca-Cola). We also got to see the quality control lab, the freezers, and the warehouse. The whole operation looked just like something in the U.S. After the tour, we were treated to light snacks and free beverage products produced at the plant. We even got goodie bags with a t-shirt, a hat, pen, playing cards, etc. It was a great way to spend the morning!
One of the canning machines.
The fruit cocktail drink, heading to be packaged in boxes.
Along the Coca-Cola bottling line.
The Coca-Cola side of things.
On the way back to the ship from the factory, we passed one of the notable monuments here in Lomé, known locally as "La columbe de la paix," or "The Peace Dove." It is even cooler looking at night, when it's covered with blue Christmas lights. We saw it all lit up last month when were headed to the U.S. Embassy to watch the Super Bowl. Togo has been a relatively peaceful country, with no major wars in modern times, making this a very appropriate monument.
Another surprise from this week was getting to move cabins! Since arriving over a year ago, I had been living in a 4-berth cabin, on the top bunk. Overall, I didn't have any major complaints: my roommates were considerate and the room was pleasantly chilly. But when Janine from HR told me that I could "cabin-sit" in a 3-berth cabin for the remainder of my time here, I jumped at the opportunity. Since Alan, one of our electricians, would be on vacation until after I leave, his berth was open, and so I was the lucky one to get the upgrade! A 3-berth comes with much more privacy as I have my own "pod" to myself. Also, it's not under the dining room, so I don't have to listen to chairs constantly being dragged across the floor.
With all this excitement, who knows that the next few weeks will hold!
"Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, so we may sing for joy to the end of lives.
Give us gladness in proportion to our former misery!
Replace the evil years with good.
Let us see your miracles again; let our children see your glory at work.
And may the Lord our God show us his approval and make our efforts successful.
Yes, make our efforts successful!"