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Back to Business

9 days gone by.

2646 miles

246 gallons of gas for an average MPG of 10.7.

Average speed 51mph.

Loaded up and heading west

Very little of the trip was made on interstate highways.  We stuck to the skinny roads and what time was lost was replaced with the grandeur of watching the Rural West roll by;  it was sad in a way.  Rural West Texas is hurting-bad.   Not a single  town we rolled through evidenced signs of much prosperity.  These towns are gone folks.  They will never be back; too much has been lost.







Vera,Texas Post Office

All those little West Texas burgs that centered around a cotton gin or grain elevator or mercantile store or elementary school are not dying — they are dead. Dead town after dead town with plastic bags blowing down the streets and plywood on the windows. It bordered on the apocalyptic.






Small Town Texas

Now I am not a puss when it comes to road trips.  I have managed to visit every state in the Lower 48 at least twice and never gave it a second thought — until now. I was doing a mental checklist of how much drinking water we had on board and where the emergency tool box was packed. Once you passed through these meager population centers, the roads were deserted. No ranchers, no cops, no families on vacation. Save for the occasional cow or goat, there was little life. Miss Kathy observed that times must be hard as there were more goats than cows, goats are cheaper and live better on meager food rations.

It took some shaking off to get rid of the funk once we got to Tucson.


There were vehicles for everybody.

Hunter checks out the 4Runner








There were guns for everybody.

Henry trying out the Texas gear

Hunter and Cait wring out the Colts

Shawn takes the Wingmaster for a drive
















Hunter and Miss K

Hangin' with Hank in the Man Room

The best part was the fellowship enjoyed with kids that had been too far away for far too long.












Everybody always says the visit was too short.   Hell, life is short.   Miss K  and I packed a ton of dynamite into every day we were gone.   Returning to the job site here west of Gainesville was certainly bittersweet.  We had been busy when we left with 3 drilling rigs on site with the promise of more activity on our return.  The day we got back, a frac crew moved in and the second frac crew rigged up yesterday.   The more you have going on at your site when you are doing the oil field gate guard thing the bigger the pay check is.   Moving the Old Girl from the back of the pad back to the frontlines was a monumental task with 700 vehicles crossing  in front of us for the day.

The Old Girl sits in reserve

I have said it before that this job is not rocket science.  It is the pace and the environment that grind you down.   I  learned long ago that long sleeve shirts and long pants are de rigeur to combat the merciless Texas sun.  It was too windy the first day back to wear a big hat so I am nicely toasted.  I had also blocked from my brain how uncomfortable a fine coating of caliche dust is on all exposed skin.  With all that said, Miss K and I were glad to see the gate as we rounded the curve on the county road Tuesday night.   Tuco the Dog was probably the most relieved of all.  She had been enduring cramped quarters, interminable car rides and the gropes of small children.

No, it is not home but it will do for now.

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3 comments to Back to Business

  • Welcome back! So glad your travels were safe and you visit so special!

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    • admin

      Thanks Debbie!

      It was actually nice to come back to work as well.

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  • John Duncan

    Looks like y’all had a great time! Thanks for sharing!!

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