Total Depth & Time to Move

Monday 1/9

Happy 95th Heavenly Birthday to my dad, Robert Evans!

Michael was back at the Ironwood gate again today.  They didn’t work Sunday because they needed Slick line to come in and they couldn’t make it until today.  He ended up being released about 5:45 pm getting him home before 7:00 pm with was nice.

While I was sitting outside waiting for the pipeline crew to leave about 5:00 pm 1 white truck went flying down the road past our gate.  Very shortly after a Border Patrol vehicle flew by….then just a few seconds later came another but this one turned into my gate, rolled down his window and asked which was the white truck had gone.  I told him past our gate and down the road…which is a dead end.  He turned around and sped off down the road.

I walked to the end of the drive to see what I could see and all I could see was the two Border Patrol vehicles at the end of the road.  They were down there for half an hour or so before one of went flying past my gate again.  So, once again I walked to the end of the drive to see what I could see.  The second vehicle was slowing coming my way but then stopped in the middle of the road and walked around a bit.

When he finally got back in his vehicle he drove my way and then pulled over to talk with me.  He told me that the white truck had blown through the fence at the end of the road and driven off and they thought he might have come out somewhere on the ‘other’ side but weren’t sure as they won’t drive through where they’ve broken through a fence…they’ll only use gates and roads.

Since the property we’re on is next door he came in and drove around to be sure that they didn’t end up on this lease but he didn’t find any evidence of them making their way onto this property.  Wow!  That was exciting!

The rig crew TD’d (reached total depth) around 9:00 pm which means that should start moving various parts & pieces to the new location (about 32 miles one way to the gate and then 8 miles back in on the property, with a very strictly enforced 20 mph speed limit for the last 8 miles) sometime Wednesday, I would think.

Tuesday 1/10

We still aren’t sure when we’ll be moving…at this point it’s either Wednesday or Thursday and we’re both thinking more along the lines of Thursday but who knows?

Delicious tacos

Delicious tacos

Something a little different today.  We ended up having 26 students from Texas A&M come in to tour the rig.  I guess there wasn’t a whole lot of notice but it turned out to be a good day for it since they’re done drilling and starting to rig things down.

Since we didn’t move today Michael was back at the Ironwood gate.  He was done just before noon and they weren’t sure if they’d need him tomorrow or not but would give our sales person, Kelly, a call if they need someone.

Since Michael was done early he stopped and picked up our mail from Ace Hardware (they’re good enough to allow gate guards to use their address to have mail sent to) and stopped at Taco Palenque to pick up lunch.  We’d had several guys tell us the food was good and they were RIGHT!  Yummo!  I had the matamoros tacos and crispy tacos and while they were cold (the cooler in the truck was full of ice and we normally put hot food in there to bring it home) they still had excellent flavor.  Can’t wait to try them when they’re hot!  Michael had enchiladas and a chicken taco

Traffic here at our gate was quite steady…barely getting time to sit down between opening and closing the gate, coming in the house and logging the vehicles….and they’re not even really moving any equipment yet!  I expect the next few days will be just as busy if not busier.

Wednesday 1/11

Go me...I was actually very comfortable driving this time.

Go me…I was actually very comfortable driving this time.

Move day!  We left the gate we’d been at for 5 weeks (and 1 day!) about 8:00 am and I drove (yes…I said I!!) the 42 miles to our new location which is right on highway 85 east of Dilley. It may not have been far but it wasn’t a straight shot on an interstate like the last time I pulled the coach.  I wasn’t nervous at all and did darned good if I do say so myself!

The new location will make for a much quicker grocery run as were are now just 15 miles from shopping rather than the 48 miles from the old gate AND it’s all on paved roads where it wasn’t before!

After some confusion we finally got the coach parked in its new home for the next 9.5 weeks and began to set ourselves up amid logging in the various trucks coming and going.

Nicest spot we've had to date, I think.

Nicest spot we’ve had to date, I think.

Our spot here is quite nice.  We are on a level grassy area with a huge concrete pad right in front of us for the vehicles to drive over which mean a little less dust perhaps…and no broken windows?  We also have a power pull that we’re able to plug into rather than having to use the generator…which means my clocks will keep the correct time!  Woohoo!

We have another set of gate guards that are about 7.5 miles down the road from us and with a very strict 20 mph speed limit it takes about 30 minutes to get from here to there.  We met the guards yesterday (I only met the gentleman) and unfortunately we didn’t get warm fuzzies.  Too bad.

To help out GGS, because someone called in sick, Michael worked from 4:00 pm to 12:30 am driving between the two gate guards sites just patrolling to make sure that no one was lost or going where they shouldn’t.  This ranch is 80,000 acres and there are roads everywhere….very easy to get disoriented, especially in the dark.

I had a breath of fresh are when a fellow gate guard we know through Facebook stopped by yesterday afternoon.  She was just the medicine I needed  during a long, busy, hot, windy, frustrating day!  Dora and I chatted for well over an hour and I look forward to some more time with her as their gate is just 11 miles from us.

Thursday 1/12

One of MANY of the pieces to the puzzle that is the drill rig

One of MANY of the pieces to the puzzle that is the drill rig

After a long crazy day yesterday and a little bit of sleep last night we’re starting to get familiar with the comings and goings of this ranch.  There are 4 or 5 different oil companies with wells on this property so it will take some time getting to know everyone.  Plus there are quite a few ranch hands, ranch managers and land owners that come and go as well.

Michael went into town, stopped at 4 different places and was back in less than an hour!  That’s how conveniently located this gate is!  One of his stops was at Rosa’s Hamburger Stand where he picked up a couple of bacon cheeseburgers and fries.  We’d gotten burgers from there once before, a little over a year ago, and they were still just as yummy as then….GOOD burger!

The Rig Crew and their house arrived this afternoon so that means we’re really getting somewhere….the crew will all sleep here starting tonight.

Good eats!

Good eats!

The rig had a Spud meeting today and lunch is always served.  Coyote Catering brought in today’s lunch and their food is always very good.

Today’s menu:  Shrimp, fish, Mac and cheese, corn nuggets, green beans, corn, hush puppies, fries and banana pudding!  I just heated up some oil and reheated the shrimp, fish , hush puppies, fries and corn nuggets and then zapped everything else in the microwave and we had a ready-made dinner!

 

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day Gate & Cold Spell

I’m still doing double-duty.  Blogging here on our personal blog and also for Heartland RVs.  My latest post for Heartland can be found HERE.  Our top 12 favorites restaurants from around the country are the subject of my most recent post.  If you’re ever in any of the areas listed…give some of our favorites a try and let us know what you think.

Thursday 1/5

Michael had to be at the Ironwood gate by 9:00 am and ended up working until just after 6:00 pm.  His traffic level was a bit busier than a normal day gate…almost an entire page (which is 24 vehicles).  Still not busy but more than normal.

Unfortunately, Ironwood gate is kinda down in a valley so there is no reception.  However, if you go up the road just a bit and stand on top of the hill you can get a little bit of signal….if you’re lucky.  Michael made the trek a couple of times just to check in.

We have an AT&T Trac phone that we bought last year just for such occasions.  Unfortunately, when Michael went to add minutes to the phone he found out (after much hassle) that the sim card had been deactivated after 90 days of non-use.  We had no idea…no notification, no nothing.

Suffice it to say…Michael was pretty upset as now he wouldn’t have any form of communication while working at the Ironwood gate.  He went all the way up the chain over the phone with Trac Phone and they agreed to send him a new sim chip so he could reactivate the phone AND they’re supposed to credit his account with minutes and data since we lost all we’d accumulated.  Now we’ll wait and see if they come through on their promises.

We’re back to just having the drill rig here on location.  One workover rig finished up yesterday and pulled out this morning about 8:15 while the other finished up today and pulled out about 4:00 pm.  That will reduce traffic a little bit…but not much as they don’t have too much traffic coming in normally.

Friday 1/6

On Wisconsin!

On Wisconsin!

Cold strikes again!  We woke up to 28 degrees on our thermometer here.  Maybe not as cold as other parts of the country but still cold…especially for this area.  The heat pumps, fireplace and space heater were definitely in use.  Anyone that knows me knows that I don’t care for socks and I normally wear shorts or capris.  Not today…socks, jeans, a sweatshirt and a hand crocheted head band (thank you, Kelsea!) kept me warm!

My sweatshirt was a Christmas gift from my son Zack and his wife Kelsea and I’ve been waiting for it to get cool enough to wear it!  Plenty cool today and I LOVE it!  Thanks, guys!

Michael was back at the Ironwood gate again today.  He left here about 5:30 am so he’d have plenty of time to be there by 6:46 am and was back home about 6:30 pm.  His morning was very quiet but business picked up in the afternoon when the workover rig crew that was there left and a new workover rig and crew came in.

Saturday 1/7

Ignore the time...this was at 5:30 am

Ignore the time & date…this was at 5:30 am

Brrr!  We woke up to 22 degrees at 5:00 am.  I had turned the ‘Yeti Package’ on last night and Michael unhooked us from the gate guard water pump so we were just using water from our onboard tanks so we still had water.  The fireplace, space heater and furnace kept the inside of the house nice and warm.

The cold plays havoc on all kinds of thing!  Our bell system hiccupped intermittently and one of the guagers came in and said that he had 12 wells down.  Who knows what else was affected.

Thankfully the sun came out today so even though it was colder today than yesterday it didn’t feel quite as bad…no headband today!  It eventually warmed up to about 47 and the rest of the week it will continue to warm up.

Today was Michael’s third day working the Ironwood gate but I think they’re almost back to square one.  The workover crew that was there since Thursday was asked to leave and a new company brought their rig in.  Hopefully they’re able to start where the other crew left off and not completely from scratch.

Sunday 1/8

Michael didn’t have to work at the Ironwood gate today so we were able to get some extra sleep which felt great.

It was roughly 25 degrees when I got up at 6:00 am but I only had 2 vehicles until 9:00 am so it wasn’t bad cuz I was able to stay inside in front of the fireplace.  Then the sun came out and it warmed up to 55 in the afternoon.  The temperature is finally heading in the right direction!

The new gate.  This is taken look out at the highway and from approximately where the coach will sit.

The new gate. This is taken look out at the highway and from approximately where the coach will sit.

We should be moving to our new location either Tuesday or Wednesday so we worked on prepping the coach to move by stowing un-needed items in their rightful places.  Michael needs to go back and work at the Ironwood gate on Monday and possibly Tuesday if we don’t move until Wednesday so today was the only real day he could get his chores out of the way.

To get a better feel for our new gate we got directions from the company man and Michael took a drive over there to check it out.  It’s a good thing he did because we’d thought it was on the north side of highway 85 and it’s actually on the south side.  Much better to find that out while not towing the coach!

From the pictures Michael took it looks like a pretty nice spot – level grassy area with a couple of trees and a concrete on the road  around the gate area…hopefully that will help with some of the dust.

 

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Happy New Year!

Friday 12/30

Two trucks coming in with parts of a pumpjack to be installed on the last well that was drilled.

Two trucks coming in with parts of a pumpjack to be installed on the last well that was drilled.

The rig crew were back to drilling sometime in the late afternoon.  Which means if all goes as planned we should be moving to a new location right on highway 85, east of Dilley, in about 10 days to 2 weeks.  We’re hearing that they’ll be drilling 5 wells there so we should be there for a good while.  We like it here but a little change of scenery never hurt anyone.   More on that move when time gets closer and we know more.

My turn to run away!  I only went as far as Pearsall for groceries with stops at both Walmart & HEB.  The big highlight of my trip was seconds after I left the gate.  There was a dead bobcat lying in the road…musta been hit by a vehicle.  He was pretty big and sure was pretty before he met his maker.  I had heard we had bobcats around here but seeing one in person (even though dead) was a shocker.  Yikes.

Oh yeah…I stopped at the Donut Palace and picked up some Kolaches (jalapeno & cheese sausage) and a couple of donuts too.  So yummy!

Saturday 12/31

Our New Years Eve spread

Our New Years Eve spread

No big New Years Eve partying going on here…for us or the crew.  I made a bunch of appetizers (beer dip, spinach & artichoke dip, lil smokies, taco pizza rolls, pickle wraps and cheese & crackers that we nibbled on throughout the afternoon.

Since it was nice and quiet we were able to watch four episodes of Game of Thrones..

Before our marathon began Michael took a drive over to Carrizo Springs to pick up some packages that were waiting for us and to pick up some DEF at Walmart.

Sunday 1/1

Believe it or not but we were actually awake at midnight!  One of the ‘guys’ came in from a casing break at 11:53 pm and we were still awake enough to say ‘Happy New Year’ and watch a goofy video our son, Zack, sent from a party they were at.  Hope y’all rung in the New Year safely with friends and family.  Here’s to 2017!

I made pork ribs, sauerkraut, black-eyed peas, corn bread and potatoes for dinner.  Got start the new year off with as much luck as we can get!  We had lots of black-eyed peas and corn bread leftover so I shared with a couple of the rig crew who were very appreciative.

This was our slowest day so far so we had plenty of time to continue our Game of Thrones marathon.  We ended up watching 5 episodes bringing us to Season 5, episode 5.  Not too many more shows and we’ll be up to date and ready for Season 7 when it airs this spring.

Monday 1/2

Pea soup??

Pea soup??

The morning started out really foggy.  Well I guess it didn’t start off that way as it was fine at 6:00 am but by 6:45 am it was crazy foggy.  The guager said he could barely see the lease road as he was leaving.  It stayed foggy for a couple of hours and then cleared up to be a gorgeous day.

Traffic started picking up a little bit but not a whole lot…tomorrow will be the day when it really picks up.  The workover rig crew came in and dropped off the rig and will start working on the first well that was drilled tomorrow (it’s been having troubles).  The rig manager for a second workover rig also came in to check things out and will be in tomorrow to work on the last well that was completed.  Plus the pipeline crew will be back to work tomorrow too!

Thankfully, the table is still in tact!

Thankfully, the table is still in tact!

Michael has been wanting to build a ‘cover’ for the basement TV so that it doesn’t get knocked around by things shifting when we travel.  Today he began working on his project.  He spent the majority of the day outside puttering around and got the cover completed except for adding some felt around it and inside it for protection.

Brent, our head Company Man, stopped by today and told us we’d be moving to the new location next week, probably Wednesday or so.  He also told us that there would be a need for 2 guards at this gate…one on the highway and the other further back in the pasture and asked which gate we wanted.  Michael immediately told him the gate on the highway but now we’re rethinking that…hmmm…we’ll have to figure some things out, I guess.

Tuesday 1/3

Well it didn’t turn out to be as busy as I thought it would be today.  The pipeline workers that I expected were working on the ‘other’ end of the pipeline and they have to go to another ranch to access that end so I only ended up having a couple of guys come in.  No complaints!

Completed! How nice is that?

Completed! How nice is that?

Michael spent the day puttering around outside again.  He finished working on his TV cover and even made a holder for the remote.  It really turned out nice and now there will be no worry about the TV getting banged up.

While Michael was doing his puttering I worked on our 2017 Travel itinerary getting routes and parks firmed up.  Now I just need to start making reservations and research things to see and do in each of our destinations.

Wednesday 1/4

Michael got a call this morning from Shawn, asking if he wanted to work a day gate for 3 or 4 days…with the job starting Thursday.   Of course, Michael said ‘yes’.

Our drill rig with the two workover rigs behind it. Kinda a cool view, I think.

Our drill rig with the two workover rigs behind it. Kinda a cool view, I think.

I had planned to go into Pearsall on Thursday to do my grocery shopping but ended up going today since Michael would be gone and I’d be the only one here to work our gate.  After getting my groceries squared away I headed home and planned to stop at Taco Palenque as several of the guys had said it was good.

When I pulled into the parking lot there were 3 buses there and from the truck I could see that the restaurant lobby was packed…so much for trying Taco Palenque!  I ended up stopping at Wendy’s and bringing burgers home for dinner.

 

 

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sit Down & They Will Come

You’ve heard the quote, “Build it and they will come”, from the movie Field of Dreams?  My motto here in the oil field is, “Sit down and they will come.”  It never fails.  I can be up doing chores around the house and no vehicles come…but the minute (and I’m not kidding!) I sit down…ding ding goes the bell!  I swear these guys have cameras on me and sit and wait for me to sit down and then they proceed.  LOL

The rig crew reached total depth on the second well mid-afternoon Christmas Day.  Then it was time for wireline to come in and set the packer and another crew followed several hours later to come in and ‘nipple down’.

With all of that done the ‘moving team’ started coming in about 8:30 am Monday morning  to start moving tanks, pipe and other smaller items.  They worked until about 6:00 pmish and then called it a day with plans to be back Tuesday morning.

The new view from our back window

The new view from our back window

They were back early Tuesday to get the rig moved but it seems like there was some issue and they couldn’t get the rig down and had to wait for a part to be delivered…which came late Tuesday night…so they all left again and were back Wednesday morning to get the job done!

Not only does the rig have to move but so do all of the ‘houses’ that the company men and crews live in, the various trailers, man-lifts and miscellaneous pieces of equipment.  It’s a pretty big undertaking and takes a lot of manpower and time….just to move a 1/2 mile up the road.  All of that equipment was moved to the new pad on Tuesday.

The rig was still standing at 9:00 am Wednesday morning and when I looked again at 10:00 am…it was down.  Once it’s ready to come down it comes down fast.

I had a gentleman come in early Monday morning and while chatting he mentioned that his brother passed away last March.  It turns out that his brother was Larry Drake, an actor, probably best known for his role of Benny Stulwicz on LA Law.  The oil patch can be a very interesting place, indeed.

So far (knock on wood) we haven’t seen hide nor hair of any mice.  Not sure if it’s because of the rope lights under the coach (since they weren’t put out for over a week) or that we’re just in a good area.  I don’t really care which…I’m just a happy camper!

Apparently I shouldn’t have told you that Michael was feeling better, cuz I may have jinxed him.  He was…for close to a week…and then the humidity (God awful humidity) set in and sent him back down the wrong road.  This time he didn’t wait for the cough to get out of hand and drove back down to the VA Walk In clinic in Laredo to nip it in the bud almost as soon as he started having breathing/coughing issues.  He came back with more meds…good grief…let’s hope that third times a charm.

My sweet Mikey knows what I like and brought Chinese (from Lin’s Grand Buffet) home for me and fried chicken for himself when he came back from Laredo.  Of course, he brings TONS of food so we’ll be eating Chinese and chicken for a few days.  Not that I mind!

Oh how I love some hot & sour soup

Oh how I love some hot & sour soup

While Michael was in Laredo I was logging traffic here at the gate.  Since we’re in the middle of a rig move I had that traffic and since we’re a few days away from the start of drilling the third and final hole (this go-round) I had traffic coming in for the Spud meeting too.

It really wasn’t much traffic but I had honeybees to contend with.  I have no idea where they came from…they just appeared…and what a nuisance.  Every time I opened the door several came inside so I was swatting bees from one end of the house to the other.  Plus they’d ‘buzz’ me while I was outside opening/closing the gate or talking with one of our visitors.  Annoying.  Thankfully, I never got stung.

Michael, on the other hand, got stung almost the minute he got home!  He carried some things in the house from the truck and then went to change his shirt and got stung in the back!  Then a few minutes later he went back outside for something and got stung in the hand.  LOL  I guess the bees didn’t like him much.

With a Spud meeting comes lunch.  One of the companies in attendance volunteers to bring lunch for everyone at the meeting.  Sometimes they hire a caterer, sometimes they grill or make food themselves and sometimes they order food from a local restaurant, pick it up and then serve it to the meeting attendees.

It's not much but worked like a charm to keep the unused portion of the gate from blowing in the wind

It’s not much but worked like a charm to keep the unused portion of the gate from blowing in the wind

That was the case yesterday and most of the time we leave plates for us on their way out.  We were given brisket, smoked turkey, pinto beans, creamed corn, peach cobbler and a gallon of iced tea.  Michael was on his way home with ‘Chinese/Chicken’ so I packaged up the brisket/turkey lunch and we’ll have it another day.

By 9:00 am Thursday morning the rig was back up but drilling won’t start for at least 24 hours.  When we started here 3 weeks ago the rig was 2 miles away and has consistently gotten closer…it’s just 1/2 a mile away at this point.

The wind was pretty strong most of the day Thursday (my entire shift!) which meant I did a LOT of running back and forth between the two gates to keep them from swinging into vehicles.  After a while I had a pretty good routine and was able to get the wind to work with me rather than against me.

When bigger trucks came in that required both gates be opened we both went out and opened a gate and held onto it to be sure it didn’t get grabbed by the wind and flung into the vehicle.  That’s what you call ‘Teamwork’!

Eventually, Michael rigged up something so that one gate would stay in place while I just dealt with the other one.  Nothing special just a post in the ground that held the gate in place since the post on the gate that is supposed to move up and down no longer works.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Christmas in the Oil Patch

I’ve been continuing to blog for Heartland RVs and if you click HERE you can read my latest post entitled “2PS Top 8 RV Parks And Campgrounds“.  What are you favorites?

It seems like Michael might finally be kicking the nearly 6 weeks worth of bronchitis he’s been dealing with.  After 2 visits to Urgent Care, 2 rounds of antibiotics, 2 rounds of steroids and what seems like a years supply of cough drops and cough medicine…he is finally able to sleep through the night and while laying flat to boot!

Wednesday 12/21

A gloriously beautiful day!  Sunshine, blue skies and a temperature in the low 70s.

One of MANY caliche trucks

One of MANY caliche trucks

We had the last half of the caliche trucks come in today.  With 66 loads today and the 98 from yesterday we ended up with a total of 164 loads.  That sure made my vehicle count go up!

Since it was so nice out we took advantage and sat outside for several hours while the caliche truck were running.  As long as we’re outside we can leave the gate open so it made logging the trucks in and out really easy.

While we were outside Michael did his normal putzing.  He also took a look at the furnace to find out why it wouldn’t turn on the other morning.  He checked everything and the only thing he found was that it didn’t seem to be getting any propane but didn’t find a leak anywhere.  He made some adjustments and the furnace is, once again, in working order.  Just to be on the safe side he ordered some new hoses from Amazon and will install those when they arrive.

To be sure to get all of our ‘regulars’ before Christmas I started handing out candy canes.  Everyone is always so happy and appreciative….it warms the heart!

Thursday 12/22

Nothing to report.

Friday 12/23

Michael drove into Carrizo to pick up the last of the Christmas packages and also a sump pump for the sewer system provided by our gate guard company as our stopped working again.  If you’re counting that’s 2 sump pumps and 2 water pumps we’ve gone through!

While he was in town he picked up groceries from HEB and made a stop at Walmart.  I have to remember to never send him to the grocery store again….he came home with cherry pie, graham crackers, Fritos, donuts and animal crackers, all of which were not on his list!

He also brought home dinner from the Country Store in Cotulla.  We’d picked up food from there last spring and weren’t real impressed.  I ended up getting the exact same meal as before (stuffed hamburger steak, mashed potatoes & fried corn) but Michael ordered chicken fried steak this time instead of the brisket he got last time.  We both thought the food lacked flavor last time but this time we were both happy with our meals.  Just goes to show you should never rule a place out after just one try.

The pipeline crew left about noon and won’t be back to work until January third…woohoo!  That means we’ll just have rig traffic until after the first of the year.

Saturday 12/24

Quiet, quiet, quiet.  A few guys went into town for food, a fuel truck came and went,  we got a delivery and had two guagers…that was pretty much it for traffic.  Nice.

Out with the old...

Out with the old…

One of the packages we got on Friday was a set of new steps for the coach.  We’d been contacted by the company and asked if we’d be interested in trying out a set of their steps.  Glowstep Revolution by Torklift are steps that adjust 7 different positions depending on the terrain your RV is parked on.  They’re lightweight and easy to use…plus they look nice too!

...in with the new

…in with the new

It took Michael just under 2 hours to remove the old steps and install the new and that includes quite a bit of time finagling the brackets on the coach that the steps fit into.  Our brackets were just a wee bit too narrow to receive the new set of steps so Michael had to ‘stretch’ the brackets a bit.  Otherwise, installation was pretty straight forward.

The job is best done by 2 people (even if that second person is more of a support person) as there are some instances when 4 hands are better than 2.

Regular RV steps tend to ‘move’ as you walk up and down them since they’re just hanging in mid-air but these don’t seem to.  Since they’re stabilizing by the feet that reach the ground they seem to be much more stable.  We also can’t feel the movement of someone going up and down them from inside the house either…which is a nice plus for when one of us is sleeping in the bedroom and the other is going in and out the door to log vehicles in and out.

We’ll do a right up on how to install and a better review once we’ve used them a bit more.

After completing the new step installation Michael continued marking projects off of his ‘To Do’ list and immediately got the new sump pump installed on the sewer system.  Without the sewer system working correctly we’re unable to dump our onboard tanks into the huge sewer system on our ‘life line’ trailer.

Late afternoon we got together with our sons and their families via video chat to watch them open gifts from us and each other. I would much rather have been there in person but this is definitely the next best thing.  The grandbabies are 14 months, 3 years, 3 years, 5 years and 5 years and it was wonderful to see the excitement as they opened their gifts.

Sunday 12/25

Even quieter day!  We had a total of 8 vehicles come in and go out which gave us plenty of time to have a Game of Thrones marathon.  We were able to watch FIVE episodes, bringing us up to Season 4, episode 2.  Good show!

What a way to start the day!

What a way to start the day!

We started the morning off with a yummy breakfast of Eggs Benedict.  Michael’s not a big fan but he put up with it since it’s my favorite breakfast.  He’s such a good guy.

Yumminess right there!

Yumminess right there!

Cosme, our Mud Engineer, brought us home-made treats from his wife….something we’ve never had before…white chocolate, craisins & nuts.  OH.MY.GOSH.  Talk about yummy!  I asked for the recipe…hopefully he remembers and she shares!

I made a traditional Christmas dinner for us to enjoy with plenty of leftovers for another day and some to go into the freezer too.  Michael wanted turkey but our small convection oven will only hold so much.  He found a fully cooked smoked turkey breast and we decided to give it a whirl.  I think we’re both very happy we did as the flavor was perfect…so perfect that I’ll be looking for another one.  Keep your eye out for a HEB fully cooked turkey breast as they are yummy and fit in an RV convection oven perfectly too!

Our Christmas feast!

Our Christmas feast!

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Bad JuJu? Cable, Water Pump, Window….

Our average traffic sure did change during the days of the rig move.  Before the rig move we averaged 72 vehicles passing through the gate per day.  This past week while the rig was relocating to a new pad here on the same lease our average traffic more than double to 152 vehicles!  Still not crazy though.  Then you get Saturday and Sunday where the traffic dropped to 41.  Awesome!

Friday 12/16

It was time to head into Pearsall for provisions.  Michael stayed behind and worked the gate.  I stopped at both Walmart and HEB for items, forgetting how small both stores are and not being able to find a few things but making due.

I stopped at Cowpokes BBQ restaurant before heading back home.  I picked up both brisket and ribs…a pound of each which was more than enough since I ended up freezing some of the brisket and we still have enough in the refrigerator for another meal.

Isn't she sweet?

Isn’t she sweet?

The ranches surrounding us all have high fences…meaning that they have wildlife inside that they don’t want to get out.  Many breed deer and then hunters pay to come and hunt.  I’ve had several guys come in and tell me that they’d seen huge deer on the ranch kitty corner from us and one day while talking to the company man we watched one meander around over there.

Today as I drove back home I saw a doe all by herself behind the fence of that ranch and then three more on the ranch across the road from that ranch…but still nothing here on our ranch…just cows and quails.

Saturday 12/17

We are finally getting our DVR cleaned up from when we went to Wisconsin last month.  Being TV-holics we have a TON of shows that we watch plus we have quite a few movies recorded from when HBO, Cinemax & Starz had free promos.  Now with the winter hiatus upon us we are caught up enough that we were finally able to break up the season 3 Game of Thrones DVDs that we purchased while in Wisconsin!

We’ve had some crazy weather here near Cotulla!  Well…I think the whole country has actually.  We had a high of 87 today and it was quite humid…crazy frizzy hair day!  Couple that with a low of 37ish over night….brrr!  And the WIND…it picked up around 9:00 pmish making it that much worse.  Thankfully, we didn’t have any traffic between 10:30 pm and 6:30 am Sunday morning!

Ok…I know y’all are gonna tell me that 37 isn’t cold…but when you have nearly 90 and drop down 50 degrees in a matter of hours….it’s flippin’ cold…especially with the wind and the humidity of this area…so THERE!  :-p

We took advantage of the warm weather and slow traffic and grilled one of the ribeyes that Randy gave us a couple of days ago. He gave us four…but they’re so big that 1 feeds us just fine.  Michael requested fried potatoes and a salad to accompany the steaks so that’s what he got.

Roy getting the job done!

Roy getting the job done!

Roy, one of the ranch hands here, is here for the weekend to do some hunting with friends and he came by this afternoon to do a little landscaping.  He brought a tractor by and smoothed out the ground behind us.  Before we arrived there had been a large bush there and it was removed leaving a big messy dirt area.  Plus when we got stuck the grader and our truck and coach kinda tore it up a bit.

Michael prepping with a few gawkers watching him

Michael prepping with a few gawkers watching him

Michael prepped the area before Roy brought the tractor over, by removing any debris – roots, sticks, wood, etc and made three piles, which Roy then hauled away too.  Now we just need a weed-eater so we can whack some of the tall grass and we’ll be set! LOL

Rope lights set up

Rope lights set up

With the ground leveled out Michael got the rope lights wet up underneath the coach….mouse prevention!  With the ground all lumpy and bumpy the lights wouldn’t lay flat and he didn’t think they’d deter the mice much.  But now they’re up and lets hope they work as well as they have in the past…although we haven’t seen any evidence of mice yet.

Sunday 12/18

We got a call from Shawn on Friday asking if Michael could be his back up plan for a gate that was opening on Sunday.  He was trying to find guards for the gate but hadn’t had any luck yet.  Of course, we said we’d help if needed.  Shawn even asked Michael to post on his Facebook Gate Guard group about the need for guards.

Day gate time

Day gate time

Unfortunately, no one was found to take the gate so Michael headed out at 5:50 am Sunday morning to sit at the gate for who knew how long.  We packed food to last him a few days and he stopped and got fuel, ice and donuts on his way to the gate.

The gate is about 40 miles from our gate located on a paved highway between Catarina and Artesia Wells and it sounds like there will be a frac starting there on Thursday.

Mid afternoon Shawn brought a guard shack for Michael and another guy who covered the gate from 6 pm to 6 am.

Monday 12/19

Meet Jet the marmoset

Meet Jet the marmoset

Goodness it was cold this morning when we got up at 4:45.   The temp was just 29 and with the humidity it was bone chilling.  I ended up putting gloves on and keeping them on until close to noon when it warmed up enough that my fingers thawed out.  I even wore them inside the house!

Michael worked the same gate again but was done about 1:30 pm when the gate guards that will be staying there showed up.  The extra income from working these day gate is nice but now that our gate traffic seems to be picking up we were both pretty pooped after getting less sleep than we’re used to.

One of the sales people came in and had a monkey with her!  Not a big chimpanzee…but a itty bitty tiny marmoset.  She’s had him for about 3 years.  He wears a tiny diaper and normally has a little sweater in cold weather.  It was definitely a highlight of the day.

Yum Yum...cables taste good!

Yum Yum…cables taste good!

The UN-highlight of the day was when we realized our satellite wasn’t working.  Michael went out to check out the dish and found that the cable had been munched on by the cows that visited a little bit earlier.  Thankfully, Michael has plenty of cable and just cut off the chewed on portion and added a new end and we were up and running in no time.

Tuesday 12/20

Ahhhh….much better temps this morning!  It was 40 at 5:30 which is much more doable and the wind was nearly non-existent which is even better.

Just before 8:00 am I got the first of 130 caliche trucks.  They are going down on the new pads that were just built and being prepped to drill.  After you get the first round of trucks and their information it’s kind of a piece of cake.  Today we had 24 different trucks with several of them making 4 or 5 round trips.  We’ll finish up tomorrow with the remaining loads.

After breakfast Michael went to wash dishes and found that we had no water…again.  He did the usual investigating and even checked to make sure that the cows hadn’t munched a cable.  It seems that the water pump on the ‘life line’ trailer died.  We had the same issue last week and Michael switched out the pump for a new one but it sounds like maybe the cold weather did the new one in.

Kinda perty, ain't it?  :-/

Kinda perty, ain’t it? :-/

Michael used parts of two pumps to try to make one good one but it didn’t work so he ended up driving over to Carrizo Springs to the Gate Guard Services yard and picked one up from Shawn.  Not a big deal since we had packages to pick up there and at the post office too.  Once back with the new pump, he got it installed within minutes and we, once again, had water flowing.

After logging in a crane I came back in the house and heard this funny sound…kind of like a crackling.  It sounded like it was coming from upstairs so I went to investigate and got no further than the first step when I saw that our hall window was in the process of shattering…hence the crackling sound.  Thankfully, we have dual-pane windows.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

The Pied Piper of Yarborough?!

In talking with Randy, one of our Company men, it sounds like we should be at this location until shortly after the first of the year.  Sounds good to us!

They are currently in the process of drilling 3 wells (eventually 21) here…but each well will be on it’s own pad.  They’re drilling ‘chalk’ wells (at least that’s how it sounds to these ears), which are shallower than the normal well but they have 2 legs and are a bit more intricate, hence why it’s taken nearly 2 weeks to complete the first of the three wells.

Saturday 12/10

A nice, quiet day which is usually what you find on weekends since salespeople don’t normally come by.

The rig crew reached ‘total depth’ or TD’d.  With drilling complete, crews that aren’t essential in the next process didn’t stick around long and left for a few days to spend some time with family and friends.

Rig down crews started filtering in in the evening to start tearing things down and get ready to move to the next pad.

Sunday 12/11

The landowner and a couple of his friends have been here for 4 or 5 days doing some hunting on the lease.  I’m told that there are LOTS of deer, wild boar, mountain lions, bobcats and quail within our fenced area….so some good hunting can be had.

The landowner and his pals bagged 3 deer and hope to be back at least once more before hunting season ends.  They live in Dallas so it’s a bit of a hike to make…but if you want it bad enough….I guess you make the hike.

Bell ringers!?

Bell ringers!?

The bell went off and Michael got up to go log whoever it was in and instead found 7 cows in front of the house.  A bit of a surprise as we had NO clue that there were any cattle here….maybe the landowner let them into this area before he left!?

After dinner I went for a walk down to the end of the road and came across the cows that had visited us a bit earlier.  They’d meandered down to the ‘main’ gate.  Usually cows are quite skittish…but I talk to them anyway and they kinda look at me like I’m an alien.  However…these cows were the curious type.

They like me, they really like me!

They like me, they really like me!

One came over to the fence to check me out and then another followed and a couple more after that until I had 11 cows (3 of them HUGE bulls) gathered at the fence.  I chattered the whole time and we had a good time.  As I began to walk back home they started to follow me!  I kinda felt like the Cow Whisperer or the Pied Piper!  It was awesome.  They followed me far enough so that when I got back home I could see them at the end of the road across from the coach.

Monday 12/12

Rig moving day!  With the drilling completed it was time to move the rig and all the various pieces of equipment to the next pad. Around 8:00 am the big moving trucks started coming in once I got them logged in I didn’t have to worry about them again until they completed their jobs at the end of the day.  And then I didn’t have to worry about them anyway since Michael takes over at 3:00 pm and they all left between 6:00 and 7:00 pm for the day.

OIlfield food at it's finest

Oilfield food at it’s finest

Along with the rig move they also had a Spud Meeting which brings in quite a bit of traffic.  I’m not quite sure what the meeting entails but it usually involves food.  Today was no exception.  The caterer came in along with a bunch of hungry meeting goers.  On the way out, one of the vendors made sure to drop two plates off for us.  Yum!  Smoked chicken, shredded beef, baked potato, blacked-eyed peas, green beans & corn, dinner roll and peach cobbler.

Cool truck, eh?

Cool truck, eh?

One of the big tandem trucks that came in to help move the rig reminded me of a vehicle of or some post-apocalyptic movie.  It was painted a flat black and had big teeth-like thingies on the front grill.

Sci-fi Guy

Sci-fi Guy

When the door opened so that the driver could give me his info I was a bit taken aback to find a man whose entire face, head and what I could see of his hands and arms were covered with tattoos.  Interesting to say the least.  My DIL asked me what my excuse was for taking his picture….I just asked if he minded if I took a picture and told him I thought it was cool…which I do…you won’t find me doing it…but it’s unique.

We'll be eating steak for a while...no complaints!

We’ll be eating steak for a while…no complaints!

If that wasn’t enough of an awesome gate guard day…one of the Company men (the only one here at the moment) made a special trip down to see us and give us $60 worth of ribeyes!  Then he stuck around and chatted for about an hour.  Such a nice guy…definitely one of our all-time favorites.

Tuesday 12/13

Rig move continued today with lots of traffic coming and going.

In addition to the rig moving, a workover rig moved onto the pad the drill rig vacated.

Plus….we have a pipeline that is starting to be built.  AND…a crew that’s been coming in daily to sand blast the tanks in the tank batteries.  AND…another crew that comes in daily to work on getting the facilities hooked up for the wells that are currently being drilled.  That might sound like a lot going on but it still really isn’t a lot of traffic.

Zoomed in from roughly a mile away!

Zoomed in from roughly a mile away!

I happened to see a BIG spider wandering around early in the morning and it decided to plant itself right next to the open gate, which needed to be closed.  Thankfully, a truckload of guys came in and one, Ramone Suarez, Jr., came to my rescue and stomped on that big, black 3 inch thing.  Michael did a little research and thinks it was a wolf spider…I don’t really care what kind it was just as long as it is now dead.

While Michael's away the cows shall play

While Michael’s away the cows shall play

Michael got a call from Shawn about 8:30 am asking if he could go work a gate until he could get someone on it permanently. It seems that there had been a guard up until the day before.  The only company released him and then the very next day the oil company called and needed a guard there again.  Not sure where the guard was but it took him until 9:45 pm to relieve Michael.

Needless to say by the time he got home around 10:30 pm we were both pretty tired.  I went to bed while Michael took on the night traffic, thankfully he was able to cat-nap a bit in between vehicles.

Randy, our company man, gave me quite the compliment today when he told me, “I’ve never had a gate guard worth talking to before.”  Awww….how sweet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Tomatoes, Lemons & A Sidewalk

Wednesday 12/7

Moved into position and settled for the duration

Moved into position and settled for the duration

Moving Day!  Ok…so we only moved 15 feet or so….but we still moved!  The ground was solid enough for us to safely get into a much better position.  The move was easy enough and fast enough that I didn’t put anything away…I just brought in the slides and Michael pulled forward.  We’re settled until the rig moves but that will be a while since they’re still working on the first of the three wells they’ll be drilling this go ’round on this lease.

Garden fresh produce

Garden fresh produce

The sales rep for the gate guard company we work for, Kelly, came in to visit with the Company man and when she came back she was very happy to report that everyone down on the rig was very happy that we were back.  Awesome-sauce!  It really feels good to get a little pat on the back every now and again.  She also gave us a small bag of tomatoes from her yard…Yum!

Peek-a-boo!

Peek-a-boo!

After dinner, I took a walk to the end of the road that our gate is located on…not much to see but I did come across some new friends. My new friends seemed as interested in me…as I did in them.  Just six cows…less is good.  That way we can get to know each other better!  I told them I’d try to come back again tomorrow.

Main gate for our ranch

Main gate for our ranch

The gate we’re sitting at is actually the secondary gate for this property.  The main gate is down the road just a little further (a little past my new friends) and has a very nice entrance gate but the drive to it isn’t very well maintained.  That probably explains why the land owner uses our gate if/when they come to the lease.

Thursday 12/8

Boy Howdy!  It got chilly in the oil patch!  Only a high of about 50 today….ok…some of you are going to tell me that’s not cold. But consider the wind into that mix…it’s cold!  Then having to chase after the gate that the wind blows around…not fun!

By the way…this gate requires that the gate be closed at all times, unless we are right outside to monitor.  The reason is that there are a supposedly a lot of deer on the property so the land owners installed a super tall fence to keep them inside and doesn’t want the gate left open so that they can escape.  We haven’t seen any deer yet and neither did the guards before us…so we shall see.

Mmmmm....yummy citrus!

Mmmmm….yummy citrus!

I got a little ‘sunshine’ on an otherwise dreary overcast day when one of my ‘gate-goers’ gave me a lemon from his yard.  He and his passenger told me that the next time they come to our gate they’ll bring more fruit as they have tangerines, oranges, lemons etc in their yards!

Friday 12/9

Finished up our Christmas shopping thanks to Amazon!  The unfortunate part of shopping via the internet is the kids end up having to wrap everything (most likely the girls…the boys will help if they know whats good for them 🙂  I miss wrapping gifts…it’s part of the whole holiday experience for me.

Peace pipe?

Peace pipe?

Michael’s bronchitis still hasn’t cleared up after having gone to the walk in clinic at the Audie Murphy VA so after calling and getting some advice he drove down to Laredo so that he could go to their VA walk in clinic.

They did a chest x-ray which was ok.  He was given a breathing treatment and sent home with a breathing treatment machine and more meds.  Let’s hope this time the treatment works and he can get to feeling better.

20161209_133528Randy, one of our Company men, brought 4 mud screens down and laid them out in front of the door so that if/when it rains we’ll be able to stay out of the mud a little bit.  He plans to bring 2 more to complete the walkway.  We really are blessed with the company men we have and it’s so nice to be appreciated!

Michael brought Chinese home from Laredo!  Some of the best stuff I’ve had in a LONG time…even after traveling 80 miles and being reheated.  If you’re ever in Laredo…check out Lin’s Chinese Buffet.

 

 

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Yet ANOTHER Gate

Things can and do change quickly in the oil patch!  We didn’t end up going back to our day gate today as the  location was supposed to be dried up enough for us to get into without sinking too badly.

We’d already had most everything packed up so we didn’t have much to do this morning in order to get ready to pull out.  Michael just had to take down and stow the dish and empty the tanks.

It’s about 35 miles to the new gate  and knowing that we wanted to grab some breakfast tacos from Stripes on the way out of town we left the yard about 9:00 am.  It’s been a long time since we’ve enjoyed a breakfast taco and let me tell you…these hit the spot!  I had an egg & bacon while Michael had an egg & bacon and an egg & potato and they were really yummy!

We got to the new site about 10:00 am and when we got there we noticed that the old gate guards hadn’t moved their camper yet.  We soon found out that they’d tried to hook up and move but couldn’t get enough traction.  They didn’t have 4 wheel drive and their tires didn’t have a whole lot of tread so they were kinda dead in the water.

Ryan getting ready to pull the other guards out

Ryan getting ready to pull the other guards out

We have 4 wheel drive but don’t have a ball hitch so we weren’t much help.  Shortly after we arrived Maury, a guy we’ve worked with quite a bit, who is the owner of a construction company came buy and not far behind him was Ryan, one of his workers.  They offered to see if they could move the other gate guards camper.  Ryan hooked his truck up to their camper and pulled ’em right out.  Yay!

Oh oh!  We're stuck!

Oh oh! We’re stuck!

Now it was time for us to finagle our way into the spot.  We decided to come around ‘the long way’ as it seemed less wet & soggy. Well….apparently it wasn’t and soon we were stuck.  The field supervisor from the oil company came by shortly and tried to pull us out but we didn’t budge.

20161206_114342While Keith was trying to help Mike, Maury came back and found that we were now stuck.  He went over and checked things out and told Michael he’d go and get his grader and pull us out.  He went down to the pad and was back lickety split.  He hooked the grader up to the tow strap and pulled us right out…no effort involved.  It sure does help to get to know these guys as they’ll help you with whatever they can.

Temporary spot until the ground hardens up some more

Temporary spot until the ground hardens up some more

We are on semi-sold ground currently but not in a good spot to work from but we plan to stay put until the ground dries up some more and we can safely move into a better position.  We’re hooked up to the generator and water and are level so all is good.

We are working with the same oil company and rig crew we were with last spring so that means that many of the vendors that come in are familiar to us as well.  We’ve had quite a few of our ‘old’ regulars come in already today and it’s so nice to see such a BIG smile on their faces when they recognize us.

As the ‘head’ Company Man left to go on days off he stopped with a big smile on his face and said he was glad to see us.  We chatted for a bit and got caught up and then he said, ‘So are y’all gonna follow us?’  I replied, ‘That’s up to you’.  His response?  ‘Well, hell yeah!’.  Well…ya sure can’t beat that kind of welcome!  So…I guess we’ll be following the rig!  Sounds like we have a job until it’s time to leave for summer vacation!

We’ve been told that they’ll be drilling a total of 18 wells on this lease but only 3 this go ’round…possibly 6 and then they’ll move to the Dilley area to drill 5 more and then they’ll be back here.  Whatever the case…it all sounds great to us!

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Woohoo! Another gate!

We got a call from Shawn early Friday evening telling us that a position at a gate was opening up on Sunday morning and he wanted us to go check it out to make sure that we’d fit.  We took a ride over on Saturday morning to check out the location.  It’ll be a bit of a tight/strange fit but Michael can handle it.

The gate is just around the corner from the gate we worked this past Spring over near Cotulla and is with the same oil company we worked with at that time too.  It’s also a rig…the same rig we worked with this spring…with the same Company men!

We talked with the female half of the gate guard team that was on the gate and found that they’re moving to a gate in west Texas.  She gave us some information about the gate…like the fact that there are deer on this particular lease and the gate needs to be closed unless we are right outside to keep the deer from jumping ship.

It started raining Friday morning about 6:00 am…but only just a little bit and then it rained off and on over the course of the day.  But then starting about 9:00 pm it really started raining….in sheets…and it rained nearly all night…and all day Saturday…and all day Sunday!

Knowing that we wouldn’t be able to go out to eat together for a while we went out for breakfast at Andy’s on a dark, dismal Saturday morning.  Still amazed at how nice the inside of the restaurant is compared to what the outside looks like.  Just goes to show you should never judge a book by its cover.  Our meals were just as good as they were in the past.  We’ve never had a bad meal at Andy’s.

We also had a few errands to run:  the post office to mail a couple of packages to our sons, HEB for weekly grocery shopping and Walmart for a few odds and ends.  That should do us for a while.

Elaine & Charlie

Elaine & Charlie

While we were out running errands I got a message from a fellow gate guard who we met via Facebook but not yet in person.  She let us know that they’re in Carrizo Springs for the night and invited us to stop by for a visit.  We stopped by and spent several hours visiting.  We could have chatted for several more hours, I think, but it was getting late and we needed to get something to eat.  Hopefully, our paths will cross again soon.

While we were visiting with Charlie and Elaine I got a message from Shawn saying that we might have to postpone moving to our new gate for a day or two because it’s so wet from all the rain we’ve had.

My hand stitched Amish quilt

My hand stitched Amish quilt

Since we didn’t move on Sunday we went back over to Charlie and Elaine’s and visited again for a couple of hours.  Elaine is an awesome crafts person…sewing, quilting, crocheting, etc.  With that in mind, I asked her if she’d take a look at an Amish quilt I have but is a little too small for our king-sized bed…hoping that she might be able to add some material to it to make it big enough to use on our bed.

We took the quilt over to her and she had great suggestions on how to enlarge it and agreed to work on it when she has time as there is no rush since we haven’t been able to use it in 5.5 years and we just purchased a new bed covering anyway.

It finally stopped raining sometime overnight Sunday/Monday but it was still too wet to try to pull our coach onto the wet, soggy, muddy, grassy area of the new gate we’ll be working.  Shawn said probably a couple of days before we’ll move now.

However, he asked us if we’d work the day gate we worked last week…for at least one day, Monday.  We had no problem with that…it’s easy work and brings money in just the same.  Shawn called at 8:23 am and we were gone within 20 minutes.

One of the worst areas on the road

One of the worst areas on the road

Leona River Road, the road the gate is on was in horrible shape last year when we were there.  Terribly muddy, rutted…so bad they had us bring our coach in via a much longer route.  We knew it had been worked on since then but wondered what kind of shape it would be in after all the rain we received over the last few days.  Thankfully, it wasn’t too bad…just one area that was completely under water.

Our 'Go' bag

Our ‘Go’ bag

Michael suggested last time that we should put together a ‘Go’ bag so that we’re ready if/when day gates arise.  I thought it was a great idea so we through it together last week.  It contains toilet paper, paper, pens, cards, snacks, water, soda, garbage bags, paper plates, utensils, napkins, etc.

With all that already in the truck and ready to go all we had to do was gather our electronics (Kindle, tablets, laptops), some ice and lunch makings (bread, cheese, lunchmeat, may0) and we were on our way!  Great job, Mikey!

Ready to work!

Ready to work!

We arrived at the gate at 10:00 am and got settled in.  The workover rig and it’s crew were already down on the pad so we didn’t have a whole lot of traffic… a total of 19 vehicles for the day.  We were surprised when Zack (the Company man) left at 1:00 pmish and told us we were done for the day…just needed to wait for the rig crew to come out and then we could leave.  Awesome-sauce!

Yummy fresh oranges

Yummy fresh oranges

Enrique gave us a half-dozen oranges fresh from Weecho’s tree.  They’d shared some with us last year and they were pretty tasty so this will be a nice treat.

They will need a gate guard again tomorrow morning for a few hours while the guys finish up but we’re not 100% sure if we’ll be going or not.  We’ll be going back again tomorrow and then hopefully it will be dry enough for us to move to our new long-term gate on Wednesday.

Wish I could have gotten a better picture!

Wish I could have gotten a better picture!

The highlight of the entire day…perhaps even the week was when I heard a vehicle coming and looked up to see that Enrique was on his way out….but he was following what I thought was a goat…a BIG goat…that was running down the side of the road straight for me.  I was almost out of the truck when Michael told me to get back in as we didn’t know what this BIG animal was apt to do.  When I closed the door he turned around and headed back up the road.

We’d been on this lease before and have never seen any exotic animals before…strange.  Enrique said they think he must be from next door and got into this ranch through a hole or something.

After a little research I found out that this cool dude is a Scimitar Oryx is originally from Northern Africa but has been extinct in the wild since 2000.  They are now bred in captivity in a few places around the world and one of those places just happens to be in Texas!

Itty bitty baby buck

Itty bitty baby buck

Then if that wasn’t enough….as I was writing about the exotic creature who visited I heard sloshing outside and looked up to see a pretty little buck walking through the standing water (small pond!) in the lease next door!

Staying nice and dry in my cool red boots!

Staying nice and dry in my cool red boots!

Since it was nice and muddy I took the opportunity to wear the rain boots I’d gotten from Dan and Amanda for Christmas last year and they were awesome!  Comfy and no sloshing around in the mud or water and ruining my shoes or pants.

I’ve been doing some blogging for Heartland, the manufacturer of our 5th wheel, and have had 5 posts published at this point. If you’re interested in reading those blog posts you can find that HERE at this website.  There are a few others bloggers making posts, as well, but mine are labeled with my name.

 

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment