Day 11: Cement and Farewells

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Today was our last full day in Cyprus, as we will be leaving for the Larnaca airport at 6 am tomorrow morning. We began the day at 8 am with a group rapid testing, because we need negative test results to enter the US again. Thankfully, everyone’s results turned out negative. We then took a bus ride to the Vassiliko port area where we met with the Vassiliko Cement Company and VTTV, and saw the cement factory. We were provided with some snacks (I tried an olive pie), and they had us do a Kahoot to test our knowledge and keep us engaged. While cement making may sound not super interesting, this presentation was actually very interesting to hear, and it was cool to see the huge containers and various machinery to make it. The company has 3 quarries on the island– for limestone and clay–, and they import the rest of the products to make the cement. The company creates products for export of both cement in powder form and clinkers– an intermediate before the cement. The facility has a connection directly to the port, where the cement can travel by lines from the factory directly onto ships.

Pipes for moving the cement

After hearing from the cement company, we heard from a representative of the port itself, where we got a brief overview of the port, then heard from VTTV. VTTV is a company that is a subsection of VTTI in Cyprus that provides energy storage. This company specializes in the downstream sector of supply chains, with their products being their services of storage. VTTV has a jettie off of the port where they have 4 stations where ships can dock. There are pipelines that run directly from their facilities to the ports to allow for a passageway of liquid materials. Besides storage services, this company also offers the service of blending– for example, a company can use 92 gasoline and blend it with other materials to get 95 gasoline. Following their presentations, we had a discussion where we got to ask them questions.

VTTV’s jettie from afar

We then got back on the bus and got to visit the cement company’s plant control center, where there were many screens showing the different aspects of the plant, from the kiln, to the heating area, to the cooling area. We then went to the port itself, where we had to wear neon vests and hard hats. Its interesting to compare how this port differs from the Limassol port that we previously visited. We then had a look around the storage facilities for VTTV from a far, then took the bus to Larnaca.

Energy storage container

Once at Larnaca, we had 3 hours of free time. I had lunch with some friends, then we walked around the shops in the area. We ended our time with walking along the beach and through the water, and I was surprised to find that this water was actually warmer than expected. We then returned back to Nicosia around 5:30, and realized that the pharmacy that performed our Covid tests this morning had made some errors on some of our sheets. So, me and 7 others had to return to the pharmacy to sort out our information. Then we returned back to the hotel, and had a final group meeting where we played some Cyprus trivia, and had a concluding discussion for the trip. Following this, me and some friends decided to go see the Turkish side of Nicosia, then ended the day with some crepes. This trip has been an amazing experience that I will never forget, and I’m sad to be leaving Cyprus behind. However, I know the memories that I made on this trip will last a lifetime!

Crepes

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