"if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much room"

Thursday, February 28, 2013

finding a groove

We have really been busy the last several days with the new crew. Each new process undertaken at an oil well comes with it's own "schedule" of sorts and we have been trying to get into sync with this one. The crew arrives early, like way before dawn early! That is when I have a flurry of activity at the gate that lasts for about an hour. Once that rush is over the gate changes from employee traffic to semi traffic. They use a lot of materials at this stage and the trucks run in and out several times a day keeping us (and them) hopping.

Yesterday Rudee made our weekly trip into town for supplies. Cotulla is about a 40 minute drive and is the closest town with the stores we need. We go on Wednesdays to correspond with a gathering of other gate guards at a local restaurant. I was out of bed early and took control of the clipboard around noon and Rudee headed out. My afternoon was going smoothly until about 4:30 when a Border Patrol SUV came skidding to a stop in front of the motorhome. The officer told me they had chased a pick up truck onto our road, the pick up crashed and about a dozen suspected illegal aliens scattered into the scrub brush. They had a helicopter on the way and she told me to stay inside and lock the doors.
The helicopter arrived in about 5 minutes and begin circling an area about a 1/2 mile from our gate. I called Rudee to let her know what was happening and to be really careful on her way home. The helicopter searched back and forth for about an hour and then left. By the time Rudee got to the end of our road there was only a wrecker and one officer left. He told her they had 14 people in custody and "thought" they had them all. She said he wasn't too convincing though so we kept our eyes open and the door locked the rest of the night. :-)

We have had some questions of how we like the motor home compared to the 5th wheel so I will try and answer that.
There are pros and cons to both units. I like the motor home when we are traveling just for it's convenience. When we stop for a quick break we don't even have to get out if we don't want too, although I almost always do just so I can make sure all is Ok with the tires, toad, bike etc.
The motor home is easier to park and set up once we park for the night too.
One downside is you give up some living space for the dash and steering wheel that you don't have in a 5th wheel and we went from 4 slides in the 5er to just 2 slides in the Winnebago so we lost some square footage which also translates to losing inside storage. We gained a lot more outside storage so we just shifted some more things to the basement.
We both really like the hydraulic leveling jacks on the motor home. They really hold the rig steady even in the 50 mph winds we had the other day. :-o
All in all we are happy with the change. Towing the Dakota vs Rudee following me saved us around $300 in fuel so far and we really like being in the same vehicle again instead of having to "sight see" via radios. We plan on doing a few decorating changes and are exploring getting the couch reupholstered and redoing the valances over the windows. We'll see how that all goes. :-)

I'm doing my best to get used to being up all night and sleeping during the day. I used to do it all the time back in my Sheriff Dept. days but that was a few years ago. I'm not saying I'm getting old but ...... I'll keep you posted. :-)


  1. I guess that's what makes gate guarding exciting :) Glad all went well (I hope!)

  2. Your "illegal encounter" was a bit more than the ones that I have had
    Thanks for the comparison.