Saturday, May 5, 2012

An Announcement


After coming home on Wednesday, I called someone who worked here at Garner SP, who just started as a Gate Guard.  We talked for while and made arrangements for me to visit.  It would have to be on Friday. 


Friday, I went to visit Catherine at their gate, just west of Pearsall.  I also brought a package that Ruby had gotten for her.  We talked and shared stories for about 3 hours.  Thank you, Catherine, for lunch. and the recipe.  All the time I was there she would be doing her job, “ guarding the gate”.  Each time the alarm would ring, she would jump up, “hold that thought”, go outside, open the gate, get their information and then close the gate, and then come back inside.  (when it’s not hot she sits outside, under a tree instead of going in and out of the RV.)

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That’s all there is to the JOB, the easy part.  The hard part is the 24/7 part.  She and her husband, Dale are a team. He was sleeping while I was there and would get up and work the night shift.  Because there are two of them, one is able to leave to do errands, etc., while the other works the gate.


                 This is Catherine who is enjoying her job as a gate guard

After our visit,  I decided that I would like to check out Carrizo Springs to figure out where every thing is.  When I found the WalMart, I called Roger, the supervisor for the location of there yard.  He gave me directions and I, of course, checked it out.

                                     !!!!!!!!!    The Announcement    !!!!!!!!

While speaking with Roger, he told me that he had a gate for me and that I could start on Tuesday.  I’m not sure if it is a 12 hour gate ore not, or how busy it is, or any of the details.  All I know is that it is between Big Wells and Dilley. which is approximately 20/25 miles East of Carrizo Springs on Hwy 85.  I will be leaving GSP on Monday going to Carrizo Springs, getting hooked up for the night and being taken out to the gate

I took the round about way home, stopping at the WalMart Store in Hondo for #2 diesel and two more 3# water bottles to fill with drinking water.  They actually supply the water, generator and the portable septic system, but most people get their own water for drinking and cooking, although some just use a filter.    A girl has to be prepared.


That was that!  This is Becky, Vestal’s wife, who works at the HQ, Alice and Blas, on the cleaning crew and Vestal, one of the Rangers, who I report to.  I had just given the the announcement and I was telling them all about it.

Saturday I worked at the headquarters, and let Rick and Lisa know of my departure date.  I answered the phone and did a project for Lisa, cutting the dividing cards to make them smaller for shelters and cabins.  It is actually the kind of thing that I like to do, better than working the Day Use Fee Booth,  That took most of the morning,  The rest of the time was on the phone, answering, questions, giving directions.  Sounds familiar, doesn’t it?  I did my time there and tomorrow will be the last day at the VC.

That’s it for today. 

Oh, I forgot,  a few posts back, someone asked what I put in my trail mix.  I just use a mixture of fancy nuts, preferably not salted,  a blend of prepared trail mix with lots of seeds, 5 or 6 different dried fruits, usually, cut up pineapple, dark cherries, cranberries, bananas, strawberries, blueberries.  I also add glazed walnut pieces. pecans, and very dark chocolate chips.  The fruits change, depending on what’s available, I recently used a blend of dried fruit that I got at Costco that has tropical fruit that is good too.

Thanks for visiting

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                                                       “See, Mom, I’m not barking”

Susan and Angel


  1. Wow, this is exciting! You are just going from one job to the next, like a pro. I'm curious about this "gate" thing, I hadn't heard of it before, and I'm curious about how it works. Do you have a specific time you have to stay? Is it a permanent job? Is there a pay scale depending on your experience, or does that depend on the location?

    Good Luck!!!! :)

    1. You work as a contractor, for $125,00 a day and they supply you with generator, portable septic system and water. Since you work for yourself, ( you get a 1099) you have to line up any relief with someone else that is licensed and pay them directly. I have stocked up on the things that I will need and my sister can get me what I might run out of and I can have my mail sent to her and she can bring it out every couple of weeks.
      Usually they hire couples or pairs because of the 24/7 part of the job. They are only paying you for the actual time that you are operating the gate. The rest of the time you can do whatever you what, only you have to be there all the time. The trucks have no set schedule. They come when they come, sometimes one at a time, or a whole line of them.
      I only plan on doing it for 4 months to get enough to pay my taxes from 2011. The license is for two years. Some people work a few month, leave for a while and come back when they need more money and leave again etc. I just hope that I can figure out the relief part so that I can stick it out that long.

  2. Oh, no! My bad! I'm finally settled enough to come see you and you're leaving! I'm happy for you though. Can't wait to hear more about it. Happy trails, er, I mean "gate keeping." :)

    1. You can still come to visit, I'm just another hour and a half farther, but there's nothing to do except visit.

  3. Sure hope its just a 12 hour gate or that the company has some kind of relief for you. Can't imagine that they would think you could do a 24 hour shift on your own.

    1. Me too! Mainly for the sleeping part of it. If it is a 12 hour gate, it just means that the gate is locked for 12 hours, but you still have to be there in case of an emergency. You don't work FOR them. You are a contractor and can sub-contract for relief.

      Any one out there that wants to get licensed out there? And wants to come to the boonies and work for a day every once in while? LOL

    2. Hi Susan, Just started reading you blog. I am working on getting myself out on the road by fall. The gate tending sound interesting to me. How do you get liciensed?

    3. Hi Susan,
      Just started reading your blog. I'm trying to get out on the road by the fall. Gate keeping sound like something I would be interested in to make a little money. How do you get liciensed?

  4. Good luck! I'm looking forward to hearing all about it.

  5. It sounds like a good job, and I hope it works well for you. I think it would certainly be better than camphosting.

  6. Congratulations on your new job!! Hope it is something you really like!! Look forward to hearing all about it.