Our Schedule

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

What a benefit....

Centerville,   TX.

Goodness, when sitting still in the oil fiend, I've don't have a whole lot to blog about.   Got to thinking.   As gate guards there are benefits.   A paycheck.  Not paying for a campsite.   The company provides our water and sewer system plus a monster generator and the fuel for operation.  Doing this gives us some much needed "down time".

We get to meet and talk to some really nice people. Most of the workers are sociable and agreeable.  Sure once in a while a PIA doesn't want to abide by the rules and stop both when entering and exiting the area.    A little talk with the "Company Man" and problem solved.

As with most businesses, The Salesman Cometh.    Last year when we gate guarded for two months we found some of the salespeople come bearing gifts.   Last year is was peanuts, cookies, pound cake, large package of Lifesavers.

WHOA!   This year and at this site even better.  So far we've been given two hams, a package of pork chops and a huge rib-eye steak.     Give me a choice of peanuts or rib-eye, I'll take the rib-eye every time.

Wishing well to all who reads here.

A view from our visit to Scotland  in 2008.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014


Centerville,  TX

 I hear and read stories of other Gate Guards who are working in areas of the oil fields of Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana where there are many sightings of wildlife.  

Those in the southern part of Texas talk about rattlers and other such icky creatures.   Others talk about watching the coyotes and deer walking around their post.   Then there are the usual assortment of furry creatures such as raccoon's, possums and squirrels.

Here we see nothing of the kind.   Of course we still continue to see that dang red bird.   I think the thing is having a grand time tormenting Leonard.

So, what have we seen?

I'd rather walk outside and see them than the rattlers!

Friday, April 18, 2014

If this fails, don't know what more to do.

Centerville,  TX

Got the truck back today with the repairs completed from my OOPS of last week.   This means fresh paint, shining clean truck.   A temptation for any crazy cardinal who wants fight with the other  cardinal he sees in the windows, paints, etc.

So this is what we were forced to do.

I don't know who gave us more stress, the bird or the insurance adjuster.  

After filing a claim the adjuster called us.   He said he would contact the body shop.   The accident was last Wednesday.  We had the impression from the body shop that we could bring it in on Friday provided the claim was approved.  When  Friday came we called the body shop to find they were just contacted about submitting the pictures so it would have to wait until Monday.  No problem.

Leonard  then spoke to the adjuster.   Leonard told him the body shop said to bring the truck in 7:30 on Monday.   The adjuster told Len to call him when he got to the body shop and he would make arrangements for a rental car.  Len reminded him that we are in TX and one hour earlier than he is in North Carolina.   No problem the adjuster said.  He would be in the office.

So Monday Len gets to the body shop at 7:30 and calls the adjuster.  Gets a message that he is at home, leave a message.   Len does.  He waits, he waits, he waits.  He continues to call the adjuster.   13 times.  No return call.  Finally Len calls our agent in SD.  She is a gem.  Has a great reputation in the RV community as providing excellent service.  She gets right on it.  In the meantime there is no car available at the Ford dealership/body shop.   None in the town of Centerville.   She arranges a car to come from Huntsville, more than 25 miles away.   Gets there at 11:30.

I opened my email later that day.   There is a notice from the adjuster to pick up the rental car in OKLAHOMA CITY.  Only 350 miles away.   I reply to the email from the adjuster with our agent on copy. She cancels the Oklahoma City car.  I got no response from the adjuster.

That brings us to today.    Len was told to pick up the truck at 4:30.  In the meantime I go online to our credit card account and see we were charged $110.00 by Hertz.   What?    Len calls Hertz who says the adjuster only approved a rental of one day.    Since the beginning he knew it would take at least a week, maybe two.  (It took just 5 days).    Len tried to call him.   LEAVE A MESSAGE, I AM AT HOME, says the recording.

So again Len  calls our agent in SD who handles it with Hertz.   Great agent, no complaints about the insurance company.  The adjuster needs to be fired.   Still haven't heard from him.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Red or Blue. And why did I ever think if would be different.

Centerville,  TX

Still being pestered.   Today Mr. Hardhead moved to the front of the RV.  Probably because back windows all covered.   Len was out shopping in the rental car.  So, what's left to attack?  Maybe the door?

  I much prefer this fellow who is minding his own business.

Leonard drove down to Best But today with my new Dell.   As I've noted on previous blogs, the new computer worked find for just a few days.  Then I transferred my Carbonite account to it.  Now can't get on the Internet.  When we bought the computer I paid for a years support for the Dell and any other 2 computers.   So, I called the Geeks about the problem.  They could not help over the phone.  Told me I would have to take it in to a Best Buy.

That meant driving 80 miles each way to the nearest Best Buy.   Len took it today.  They worked on it for a 1/2 hour and said he would have to leave it and it should take about 5 or 6 days.  They also told him that if they have to completely clean it I will have to pay another $85.00 to save what I have on it now.  WAIT!  I paid over $150.00 for tech support that I THOUGHT included fixing issues.  Especially with a computer that is less than 3 weeks ago.  They will have to fight me before they get another penny.  And I'm feisty.

What was I thinking, buying a computer at Best Buy and trusting the Geeks.  I've been down that road before.   (Slapping myself in the head)

While there Len bought a new Wilson booster for the cell phone and Internet.   We have one that is over 4 years old and just does not do the job any more.    He hooked up the new one and VIOLA!  I am now able to talk on my phone here without going outside, climbing a tree and hanging from a tallest branch upside down.   Life is improving.  

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Something drastic?

Centerville, TX

Beautiful day here in this part of Texas.     Yesterday winds and rains came through as I watched the temps drop 20 degrees.    Today sunny and mild.

Yesterday Leonard took the truck to the shop for repairs and then drove down to Huntsville to the Walmart for prescription refills and grocery shopping.   This was my plan before last weeks OOPS.

Tomorrow I will drive the 80 miles down to Conroe to Best Buy and hope they will fix whatever is not allowing me to get online with my new Dell.   Hoping they do it immediately.  Not wanting to take a second 160 mile round trip.

Today - Mr. Hardhead is at it again.  This time on the rental car.  

We can get without 8 feet of him and it does not faze him at all.   He is just that determined.

Hard to see him in the picture below.  But there he is looking in the window.

We are concerned he is leaving scratches on the finish.  We are especially concerned once we get the truck back with it's new paint job on the passenger side.   The body shop people tell us it takes 30 days to dry completely and this bird attacking it will leave scratches.   Can't have that happen.  What to do.....

One of the company men here told us yesterday that we will be moving to another location about 2 miles away over the weekend.  Sure will be interesting if the truck is not done and towing with that little Mazda!  They said not to worry, they will get us moved.  However, today another company man said we will be here 7 more months.  There are 3 wells on this site.   They are rotating on the work that needs to be completed.  Wish they were working on all three at a time.  In addition to our usual wage, each additional well means $50. more a day.

No, we will not still be here in 7 months.   Between now and 7 months from now we will drive west to California then to Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, Yukon Territories, Alaska, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and back into the lower 48 headed to Branson, MO and then to NJ.

That's the Plan!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

It's a battle - he won't give up.

Centerville,  TX

We are STILL in a battle with Mr. Hardhead, the cardinal.

We covered the offending windows of the RV.

He moved on to the truck windows.  Our solution.

Today we noticed he has been pecking at the actual truck now leaving scratches on the finish.  Fortunately where he is attacking is going to be replaced due to the damage I did last week.   (Still waiting for approval from insurance company). So, once the truck is repaired and Mr. Hardhead goes to pecking at it, what do we do?    We can not allow this nuisance to leave scratches on our truck.

One challenge working in the oil field is the dust.  Trucks in and out; some slow down, others not so much. No matter how slow, we deal with the dust    Yesterday they called a water truck in to tamp it down some. Worked good yesterday, dusty today.  Cough, cough.  We will be requesting the same service for tomorrow.

On an up note, the weather here is fantastic.   How is it where you are?

Monday, April 7, 2014

We only thought we had it solved

Centerville,   TX

Our friend the cardinal is a persistent fellow.    Yea, he stopped pecking at our windows of the RV once we covered them with heavy green trash bags. Does this make us trailer trash?

So, he moved to the windows on the truck.    Not only that he must have been sitting on the passenger side mirror.     If you get my drift.

No, we are NOT going to cover the truck windows too.  If he wants to fight with another cardinal that bad, go at it.

What's that I hear?   I do believe it is raining.    Hope there will not be much traffic tonight.  I really don't feel like putting on a slicker and going out to sign them in.    A downside of this site is we are parked on the passenger side of traffic.  All other sites had us on the drivers side.  Then if it rained, they rolled down their window and shouted their name and reason for visit.   Not so easy now.

Oops. People do not "roll" down windows any more do they?   Okay, they push the button or whatever it's called and the window goes down.

Back to the rain situation.  We've put the awning out and anchored it down for such situations.   For traffic tonight I plan on standing under the awning and hoping the driver will be kind and push that button.  I will practice my pathetic look.   Surely these drivers will take pity on an old woman and not expect her to stand in the rain.

It's 11 pm.  Three hours to go and it's Leonard problem.   I'll be off to bed.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Cover those windows!

Centerville, TX

We found the solution.   A male cardinal refused to keep away from our two of our windows from daybreak to night on Friday.  He started again yesterday with the constant pecking and flying up to them.  

I had figured he was mad at the other male he saw reflected in the window.  Judy confirmed my suspicion. So yesterday we pulled out the ladder, Len climbed on it and we taped heavy green trash bags over the two windows that he was fighting with.  No problems today.

Earlier in the week we had hung a bird feeder out but no takers.   Just like last year while in this area the birds seem to like to feed off the ground and not fom the feeder.  Leonard dumped some of the seed on the ground and our cardinal friend is today having a feast.     Rather he eat bird seed than peck at our windows.

A heavy rain storm came through during the early morning.   Later a constant drizzle.  Rain has stopped but it's gotten quite chilly.   But we are just fine.  EXCEPT WHEN WE HAVE TO WALK OUTSIDE TO LOG SOMEONE IN OR OUT!   Cold!

This is our 3rd RV with a fireplace.  We never had a problem with our 2002 Cedar Creek fireplace.   The one in the 2009 Montana kept shutting off.  We found out there was an issue with that model.  We called Dimplex who immediately sent us a replacement part. No further problem.

Now with our 2014 Cedar Creek the blower would work, then not work, then work.  It was not working more than it worked.   We called them and they sent us a new blower.   This morning Leonard installed the blower.  At last, suitable heat emanating from the fireplace.    Just in time for this chill in the air.

Days are long here at the gate.   One month down, two to go.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Visitor who won't leave and other things.

Centerville,  TX

Since we had 8 days free of not having a "gate" last Friday we drove about 210 miles over to Louisiana to Leonard's brother and sister-in-laws house, Royce and Susie.  We are so fortunate that when in that area (without the RV) we are welcome to stay at their beautiful home.

The reason for this trip was the Breaux Family Reunion held on Saturday.    So fortunate that it occurred on the only weekend we could attend.    This is the 2nd time this reunion has been held at Len's cousin Dwayne's house.   Well, if one would call this a house.

Check it out on www.chateaudebonreve.com

Here is Dwayne attending to his little old grill.

A special treat to us was taking some of our Louisiana grandchildren with us.

Clara, Hunter and Nathaniel

We returned on Sunday to the Gate Guard Services yard in Buffalo and spent the night.  We arrived here in Centerville 7:30 Monday morning.  

We sure don't have to take a long walk to check in the traffic as evidenced by this picture of equipment arriving.    Yea, that's our awning at the top.

Today we have had a visitor outside since about 7 am.  

It is now pass 5:30 p.m. and he is still here, flying into two of our windows.   Time after time after time.  He will stop for just a minute or two and start again.  What gives????

I've tried and tried to get a picture of him as he flies into the glass or skittering up and down in front on the window.  He's just too fast.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Not my finest moment

Centerville, TX

This morning I took off with the intent to take my computer the 75 miles Best Buy in Conroe, Tx.

The plan was to stop at the Walmart in Hunstville and drop off prescriptions, go down to Conroe to Best Buy, stop back at the Walmart for the presciptions and do some grocery shopping.  Since Hunstville is a distance from our site I thought maybe a Walmart closer would be better for grocery shopping.

Checking my GPS I found there was a Walmart only 25 miles from the site on the way to Conroe.   So I got off I45 at the Madisonville exit and found the Walmart.   But when I pulled into the parking lot I saw it was not a Super Walmart but one of the old type with limited groceries.  I decided to go on down to the one in Huntsville.

I pulled around the Walmart sign in the parking lot not seeing one of these concrete barriers that sat about 8 feet from the sign.   I heard a bang and thought maybe I ran over a curb.  I got out to see if I might have done damage to a tire.   It was then I saw the barrier.   And this:

Okay - I know how I will be spending this weeks pay.   $1,000 deductible.

There is a Ford dealership in Madisonville that Leonard took our truck to.  If all is approved with our insurance, it goes in on Monday and should take a week.   We do have rental car coverage.

In the meantime he has a HUGE tool box he built to fit in the truck bed.   That needs to removed as the entire passenger side will have to be replaced.   Hey, that tool box needs a good organizing anyway.  I am thinking I did him a favor.

Again, not my finest moment.