Gate Closed, Great Weekend, New Gate!

Posted by on April 21, 2014
Eek!  Kevin's foot is on the snakes head and Jesse is stretching it out for your viewing pleasure.

Eek! Kevin’s foot is on the snake’s head and Jesse is stretching it out for your viewing pleasure.

Our gate closed at noon on Friday and we were on the road to San Antonio shortly after 1:00 pm.  We met our son, Zack, for an early dinner at Joe’s Crab Shack.  Michael and I had never been and were both very happy with our meals.  We both got platters:  His with fish & chips, crab stuffed shrimp & a crab cake.  Mine with fish & chips, crispy shrimp and scallops.  We had a nice visit with Zack and then headed back to the gate where we spent one last night before Kevin & Jesse arrived about 9:00 am Saturday morning to pick up the ‘lifeline trailers’.

One of the baby mice....dang thing's kinda cute.  :-/

One of the baby mice….dang thing’s kinda cute. :-/

While Kevin and Jesse were packing up the trailers they found that a colony of mice had made their home under both of the containment mats under the trailers.  Kevin, being of the male persuasion, thought it would be funny to chase me with a mouse that he caught with is hands (he had gloves on)…I did not think it was funny!  Brat.   They also found a small rat snake under one of the mats too!  Eek!  (Thankfully he didn’t chase me with that!) Sure am glad I didn’t know any of that was there beforehand!  To be on the safe side we put some mouse traps out the last couple of nights and have had no issues!  It seems that keeping the rope lights out under the trailer and on 24 hours per day really does help.

Set up in the Whitsett yard for the weekend.

Set up in the Whitsett yard for the weekend.

There was no room for us in the Karnes City yard so we were directed to go to the Whitsett yard.  When we arrived there were already three trailers waiting and 2 that are on 12 hour gates.  We parked in the spot right next to the office again and settled in for the weekend.  We knew we wouldn’t be assigned a gate before Monday unless there was an emergency.

Saturday we drove to Pleasanton to meet gate guard friends, Rod & Debbie at the China Garden restaurant.  I’d met Debbie at the ladies luncheons and Michael had met Rod at the men’s luncheons but we’d never all been able to get together so it was wonderful to sit down and enjoy a meal and some great conversation with both of them at the same time.  We ended up chatting for 3 hours before we figured we’d better vacate our table so that someone else could have it.

Rod & Debbie - looking forward to getting to know them better!

Rod & Debbie – looking forward to getting to know them better!

Before we met Rod & Debbie for dinner we stopped at the car wash next door and Michael sprayed the truck down pretty good.  The running boards were caked with mud and every time you touched the truck….anywhere…you came away with dirt on you.  It looks so much better now…but still needs a good wash.

On Sunday we enjoyed a nice, quiet Easter at home.  I made us a ham dinner.  We watched a couple of movies (Batman Begins & The Dark Knight) and Michael relaxed in his boxers….’because he could’!  We even got a chance to video chat with our NY son and his family.

This morning at 9:00 am we got a knock on the door!  You should know what that means by now…  Austin was at the door and had a gate for us.  He gave us directions and told us to be there about 11:30 am.  We immediately got packed up (not much to pack up) and were pulling out of the yard at 10:00 am.  We stopped at the gas station next door to pick up some ice and then headed down the road.

Taken while standing on CR207 looking into the gate.  You can see the crane in the background...that's where the rig will be once it gets here and gets set up.

Taken while standing on CR207 looking into the gate. You can see the crane in the background…that’s where the rig will be once it gets here and gets set up.

We got to the new location just after 11:00 am and Austin (our new service guy) and Kevin (old service guy) were already here getting the ‘lifeline trailers’ set up.  We drove down to the pad so that we could get turned around.  We found that there was pretty much nothing on the pad yet.  There were a few pick up trucks but that was about it.

We got situated and got our first truck, hauling part of the rig, about 11:30 am.  The company man stopped by shortly after, introduced himself and gave us the ‘low down’.  Sounds like it will be a pretty easy gig.  We’ll be working for Lonestar Operating and the drill rig is from Sidewinder – both new companies for us.  It will be interesting to see the differences of working for this oil company versus Statoil.

Company man's (and rig hand's) trailers are just regular mobile homes

Company man’s (and rig hand’s) trailers are just regular mobile homes

We had bits and pieces of the rig wander in throughout the afternoon.  The company man’s trailers came in shortly before 3:00 pm and I was surprised to see that they were just regular mobile homes this time.

Neighbors right across the road from us!

Neighbors right across the road from us!

It’s too bad that we’re leaving the oil patch in 13 days….well, ok… not really.  But if we were staying longer we’d be staying right here for several months – actually 4 or 5 months!  This oil company does the entire operation from start to finish in succession….from drilling to completion.  So whoever takes over for us should be here for a while.

Neighbors behind us too!

Neighbors behind us too!

It’s not a bad location either.  We’re about 10 miles from the little town of Poth and about 14 miles from Floresville that has a Walmart Supercenter, HEB and quite a few restaurants.

Cell phone service and satellite work great.

We even have neighbors here!  There’s a house right across county road 207, one not far behind us and another to our front…but it’s a little distance off.   A young boy, about 11 or 12, stopped by on his way home from school to introduce himself.  He lives in the house behind us and had about 5 or 6 dogs following him!

I’m pretty sure the next 13 nights (who’s counting??) will go fairly quickly and by talking to the company man it should be a fairly easy gate to work.





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