Monday, August 27, 2012

A Little Of This And A Little Of That


                                                 old awning

I can’t believe that it is almost here.  I will be hooking up and out of here one week from tomorrow, Tuesday September 4th.  The plan is to be out of here before it gets hot and then go back through Carrizo Springs and then east on Hwy. 85 to I 35, then north to and through San Antonio.   My destination is Camping World in New Braunfels where I will be having a new automatic awning with wind sensor installed.  It is scheduled for September 5th, hopefully in the morning. It is supposed to be a 3 hour job.  Once that is done I will most likely be able to enjoy more time outside. 

I have been putting off any major cleaning until I have moved.  It makes no sense to do it and then have to do it all over again a week later.  I take off my shoes (sandals) as soon as I come inside, so that I don’t track dirt in on the rugs. I think that I must slip the sandals on at least 40 time a day. I just sweep and get the top layer of fine dust.  That dust is just in the air for me to breath and settle on everything.  I believe that that is the best thing about leaving here, no more fine dust on everything.  Just a little while ago a huge white dust devil, at least 8’ high went straight down the road in front of the rig and the dissipated when it finally went through the brush about 50 yards away.  I’m glad I wasn’t outside then. 

Gate update…….. The traffic has slowed considerably.  I believe they have finished their installation and are getting everything online and all the loose ends tied up.  I may not be going up and down the stairs as many times, but I still get my excersize. I now have to open and close the double gate each time a vehicle comes in or out between 7:00 pm and 7:00 am.  It seems that most of the tankers are coming in the evening and overnight, so I have been trying to get in a long nap in the afternoon.  I have been sleeping in my Lazy Boy recliner for the last 4 months.  It works a lot better when I have to get up in the middle of the night so many times.  Fortunately, it is extremely comfortable, but it will be nice to sleep in my bed again. 


One thing that I will miss is the antics of the Roadrunners that come to visit.  I’m not sure if Angel will miss them  or not.  We will just have to see what there is where we will be going.    I guess that Evelyn, my sister will be making one more trip with my mail and a few groceries before I leave.  It will have been 3 weeks since her last visit and that’s stretching it for me as far as replacing some of the perishables that I usually use.  I still have enough of other stuff, so I’m not in any danger of starving.  lol   I really need to use what I have to lighten the load,  After being here out in the boonies, I have really begun to figure out what I really need and what I should just use up and not replace.  I’m sure that I will continue to find more and more of what I really don’t need and will get rid of more and more STUFF. 

Still working on getting new batteries for the truck.  Hopefully that will be taken care by the end of the week.

Internet has been “iffy'’ all weekend, so I haven’t been able to keep up on reading blogs.  It just takes too long to download, especially when there are pictures and I get frustrated and give up.  At least, where I’m going I will have internet.  I will definitely catch up then.

There just is nothing new going on here, just biding my time.

Thanks for visiting

100_2377I told you that you were too close.

Susan and Angel

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Finally! A Date!

Yes, I finally have come up with a date to leave the beautiful south Texas oilfields.  Yes I said beautiful and it is, if you look past the dust and sometimes mud.  The wildlife is interesting and sometimes hilarious, each beautiful in in it’s own way. The birds are many and I have seen many of them for the first time, although I haven’t identified them all.  The bunnies are fun to watch, just ask Angel,she knows.  Oh, the Roadrunners, they can be hilarious.  A quick story. A few days ago, I heard someone knocking on my door. I checked, but no one was there.  I got up to look a little further.  Surprise!  There was someone there, but he was a bit short.  It was Mr. Roadrunner pecking on the bottom of my door, no answer, so he jumped up on the hand support and tried to peck on the the window.   Maybe if I let him in, he and Angel could really get acquainted. lol  Right now she’s saying hello to Mrs. RR.   

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                              You can click on the picture to enlarge it.

There have also been brief sightings of a mountain lion, a couple of coyotes and a family of wild pigs and once in a while a ground squirrel, always on the look out for more.

Looking past the dust and 24/7, not being able to leave, the occasional mouse in the toilet or basement, no TV, no radio, the few illegal alien sightings  and iffy cell phone and internet service,  I will definitely do it again, maybe not in the middle of the HOT TX Summer, but yeah, when I need more money, sure I’ll do it again!

Okay, about the date of departure, I have decided to get an automatic awning with a ..motion sensor and the date depended on when I could have that done.  The original, tentative date was the end of the pay period, August 26th.  That would be this Sunday. so any time after that is just  extra money which I can certainly use.   When I finally got all the information to Camping World (CW) in New Braunfels, it would take 2 weeks to order the parts.  That would be Wednesday, September 5th.  When I agreed to be at my new job at Waco North RV Camp, it was for Labor Day give or take a day or two.  So I decided to leave here on Tuesday, SEPTEMBER 4th, the day after Labor Day and spend the night in the CW parking lot so that they can get it done in the morning of the 5th.  It is about a three hour job, so I can get to the campground in the afternoon and get set up before dark.  Maybe I can get someone to go with me to the River Walk on Tuesday.  I know that my daughter, Sandi, who lives near Ft. Worth, won’t be able to go with me, but I will have to do some checking.  Colleen, maybe?

I have called the CG to let them know, so that’s all set.  I called Roger  too, to set that up with him.  Now I have to work on getting a couple of new batteries for the truck.  With being here and not going anywhere, and not running the truck enough, they have died.  I was planning on just getting a jump and letting the truck run for an hour or so to build up the charge just before I leave, but I might as well replace them as all the terminals are corroded.


Gate news………yesterday there were a couple of CATs (Caterpillars—heavy equipment kind) blading the road in front of “my spot”.  They are doing all the roads.  I thought it would be really dusty, but nope, they brought the water truck in first.  This morning, I asked them to redo the road, as I had a bit of an issue when I closed the gate last night.  No problem, they did it right away and checked to make sure the gate closed okay.  One thing that I have to say about all the drivers and men on the crews, they have been pleasant, courteous and helpful.  They work hard with sometimes long hours and mostly in the heat.  I take my hat off to them, I wouldn’t be able to work without the A/C.  I sure hope that they are paid well.

I also spoke with Jack, the ranch foreman.  He said that now that things are getting busier on the ranch, the gate needs to be closed by 7:00 pm.  That’s when the animals start to move around the ranch.  I guess it’s getting close to hunting season.  I have been leaving it open until everyone is gone, but will now change the routine.

Angel still gets excited when BBBs come around, however not so much lately.  She has been nursing a sore foot.  It seems that a couple of days ago, she ripped one of her nails off.  I don’t know how or when, but I noticed some blood on the floor by the door.  I called a vet to see what I needed to do.  I did use some styptic powder on it to stop the bleeding and tried to put on a bandage with some antiseptic cream, but I’m sure you all know how that went.  It stayed on for a little while, I think, enough time for the cream to help maybe a little.  I explained my situation here, so they told me there wasn’t anything more that I could do.  She will just favor that foot until the nail starts to grow back lick it to keep it clean.  So she is just being the Pillow Puppy Princess, and is cuddling a little bit more than usual.  She is such a BABY.

I hope that you all are having a great week.

Thanks for visiting


Susan and Angel

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Gig Confirmed More Bird Pics


                  super tiny flower by my stairs, bloom lasts only a few hours

                  this is about ten time the actual size, just a weed, but pretty

This afternoon I called Waco North RV Camp to confirm my position.  Everything is good to go, although I’m still not sure as to the exact date.  I’m waiting to hear from Camping World (CW) for when I can expect the new awning.  I have ordered a new automatic awning with a motion sensor.  I figure that if I have one I will spend more time outside relaxing in the fresh air. It will only take a few hours to install and CW is about half way from here to the campground.  Once we have a date then I will be able to move.  I might as well stay where I’m at for those few extra days earning a bit more money to add to the coffer. It looks like it will be, hopefully by September 1st. 

One thing that I would like to do before I head up towards Waco is to go to the San Antonio (SA) River Walk, so I may spend one night in a campground in or near SA.  I have heard a lot about it, so I might just have lunch there one day.  Any suggestions as to a nice reasonable restaurant on the river? 

Not too much has happened during the past week, except that I was stung on my arm by a bee on Thursday.  It has been a long time since the last time.  I was able to get the stinger completely out in tact and right away, but I didn’t have any Benadryl and one of the drivers said that wet tobacco can be used as a poultice to draw out the venom.  Having neither, I used some anti itch cream that has a histamine in it and then put ice on it to keep the swelling down.  Later I asked Lupe, another driver if he could get some Benadryl for me when he went into town on his lunch break.  He brought back a couple of packets, so that I will have them on hand.  What I did, seemed to work and within a couple of hours it wasn’t swollen or sore. I am so glad that I didn’t have an allergic reaction to the sting.


The rest of the week was uneventful, just did some laundry and caught up on reading blogs.  Evelyn, my sister visited yesterday and brought my mail and some groceries.  While I was getting the empty water jugs out from the basement she saw a field mouse. I saw it too, so I put out some mothballs.  This morning while it was still cool, I took everything out of the basement and and did a bit of consolidating.  The mouse was gone.  I went through everything to see if there was any damage to anything there.  I didn’t see any, just the beginnings of a nest.  I got rid of that and cleaned up the few droppings.  I have most everything in bins with tight covers.  Well that’s one chore done before I leave and hopefully the smell of the mothballs will keep it from coming back.  While going through stuff, I found my zip ties and replaced a couple that broke under the kitchen slide holding some tubing together.  I certainly don’t need any loose stuff getting caught when I operate the slides.

Bird visitors

  100_2409  100_2407

I haven’t figured out what kind of birds these are,  The left one has a pinkish yellow under belly.  Here’s some new pictures of the RRs. I thought that it was just one, but there is a male and a female.  Both of them come close and tease Angel when she is out on her cable.


        ^     Just wondering if you can tell when a bird is ready to lay her eggs.

Hope that you are having a great weekend.

Thanks for visiting

100_2405 Come on and sit down, Mom and keep me company

Susan and Angel

Monday, August 13, 2012

Another Weekend Gone


Another weekend gone.  Saturday was a bit busier than it has been the last few weeks, because they were installing the compressor, although it wasn’t too bad.  Then on Sunday there was only 2 entries in the log.  The one tanker that came in at 7:30 pm didn’t leave until nearly 1:00 am.  That”s 5 1/2 hours, when they usually take a little over an hour.  Of course, I had to wait until he left before I could close the gate.  I was beginning to think that something had happened to him.  I guess he checked all the tanks.

Today it was busy in the morning, but every one was gone by 3:00 pm.  It’s a good thing that I don’t mind being by myself for long periods of time, although lately I have been bored.  I’m just going to have to start working on other things.  I’m tired of watching movies over and over again, even my favorites.

It has been hot all week, over 100* every day, so most of the time I have been inside where it is cool and not as much dust.  Once I am out of here I will have to go over every inch of everything to get rid of the thin layer of  dust.  I keep thinking I have all of this time, why not do it now, but I would just have to do it all over again, so I will just have to wait.  My latest painting is one requested by one of my followers.  I will post it in a future post. 


It is hard to see, but the bird is in the upper left quarter of the picture.  It isn’t the same kind as the ones I saw at the other gate,  the tail isn’t as long an the head is blue.  Anyone have a guess as to what it is?

The same sightings of BBBs continues.  Saturday one of the drivers, on his way out, called my attention to a family of wild pigs ( Javelin? ) crossing the road just inside the gate across the road.  They were gone before I could get a picture. A big tanker scared them into the brush.  I believe I saw some more big cat tracks yesterday.  I have also seen a couple of coyotes and have heard them the last couple of nights.  There seem to be a few more birds lately too.  Most of the time they are too far away to get a decent picture, even with the zoom.  They are usually one at a time, but today there were five or six scissor tails of some kind that seemed to stay together.

That’s about it for today.

Thanks for visiting


I don’t care what I sit on. ( Mom  had to move all the movies before I scratched them)

Susan and Angel

Friday, August 10, 2012

Dust and Roadrunner Report and Gate Update


                                                 Good Morning, 

Both of these pictures are of the busy gate across the road and all the dust that the traffic creates.


The trucks were lined up for a long way back on Highway 186, so the dust didn’t let up for nearly an hour.  Fortunately most of it blew away from where I was sitting outside, but I still ended up going inside soon after I took these pictures.

Another morning, while outside, that roadrunner came by on his morning hunt for breakfast.  He is getting quite daring.  Angel is on a thin cable when we are outside, so I don’t worry about her chasing the BBBs.  This RR stays just out of range when he walks by.  Most of the time I don’t have to use the zoom.   Angel will sit watching the RR, letting me know that he is there with a low growl and shaking.  When he gets really close, sometimes she just can’t contain her composure and will bark and jump off the stool and try to get him, but he just jumps back out of reach and continues his hunt.  I have recently been using the video setting on my camera to try to catch him catching flying insects, but haven’t gotten one yet and I haven’t figured out how to post a video on this blog yet either.  So stills will have to do.

  100_2373   100_2377100_2364       100_2363


I finally figured out how to create a tiny stream from where the A/C drips to a spot where it collects, visible from inside.  Now we can see the BBBs get a drink.

This morning it was a bit busier than it has been, as the compressor came today as well as the combustor and the knock out drum.  All of them are large pieces of equipment, each on their own flatbed truck.  There have been a lot of crews at the site working on getting it installed.  The last two trucks just left (8:00 pm).  They were leaving by 3:00 pm.  I bet that they are really tired as it has been over 100* all day. I don’t think that they all will be working over the weekend, so maybe I will get a break and catch some longer naps. 

Earlier I called Johnny, my go to guy. to let him know that I had only 40 gallons of diesel left.  He showed up a couple of hours ago to bring me fuel.  I now have another 30 gallons.  Normally he would top it off, but evidently one of his tanks has a leak so will have come back Monday to do that.  He is really good at not letting me run out of fuel or water.  I also reminded him that I would be leaving in two weeks, although I may just stay a few days longer as I really don’t want to start a new job on a Holiday/Festival weekend.  I also want to upgrade my awning to one that is automatic and has a motion sensor on it.  I called Camping World and was told that they need two weeks to order the parts.  It should only take a few hours to install it.  Is there anyone out there that has an automatic awning with sensor, if so, how do you like it?  Is it worth the $$$ to do this?

Well, I had better finish this while I am still getting signal.  Happy weekend to you all.


                                                     Good Night

Thanks for visiting

100_2274 just staying cool

Susan and Angel

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Chores, BD and BBBs–New Painting



This morning was nice and cool with cloudy skies, so we sat outside, me reading and Angel guarding.  That Roadrunner didn’t stay long, neither die the bunny.  So far, other than the one tanker after midnight, only Adrian, the company man has shown up.

Since my last post, it has been busy during the day, not much in the evening and a few tankers at night. I’m really getting tired of the caliche dust.  I leave the door open early in the morning for a bit of fresh air, but after an hour or so, the gate across the road begins to get busy, so I have to close it and let the A/C run.  I stay outside until it starts to warm up and when most everyone has signed in, then I go inside too, where I spend the rest of the day.

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                          just a couple of the big things coming through the gate

The highlight of Friday was defrosting the refrigerator, freezer and the portable freezer.  I thought that I would get that done before Evelyn comes today.  In my past life, (pre RV),  that chore was one of my least favorite things to do.  It still isn’t in my top 10, but it is a lot easier and doesn’t take too long either.  It has to be done, especially out here where it it is so hot and it helps keep boredom at bay for a little while.  This morning, I have already done two loads of wash and just need to do the dishes and then I’m all caught up on the chores.  Don’t cha just love this life style, same old chores,but they don’t take as long.

Yes, my sister will come today with my mail and a few groceries, but most of all we will be able to celebrate her birthday, which is today.  I made a pineapple upside down cake in my Redi Set Go cooker.  I haven’t used it for awhile, so it’s a good excuse to get it out.  Sure beats using the oven.  A Jiffy Cake Mix will make two small layers made individually.  Each took only 5 minutes.  Definitely made in a Jiffy.  With whipped cream to top it off, it will be a nice dessert.

 100_2360  100_2362

     As an after thought I drizzled some cherry juice on top of the whipped cream.           

In one of the comments Tom and Lynn suggested using a container to catch the water dripping from the A/C, so I used an extra Frisbee and weighted it down with rocks.  I believe that the local bees are really enjoying it.  They are taking baths too.


I still want to figure out how I can move it out where I can watch the activity from the window.  If you click on the picture to enlarge it, you can see the bees.

                           Birdies, Bunnies and Bugs, ( BBBs)

I guess that I can add another B to the things that Angel guards me from,   Bugs!

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  The spider, she tracked until it went away, but the grasshopper, no interest!

I finished another painting.  I’m sure some  of you will remember seeing this flower on Judy’s ( Travels with Emma ) blog. Thank you, Judy for letting me download it.  You take amazing pictures.

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As I close this evening, it has gotten really windy and I’m getting a lot of the dust from the gate across the road.  I think  that my voice is changing because of so much of it in the air, so it’s a good thing that I’m out of here in three, yea, three weeks. I hope that you all have had a great weekend.

Thanks for visiting

100_2343see, Mom there he is, I chased him away

                                      (Mom’s note; it’s the black dot in the center of the picture)

Susan and Angel

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Back Into A Routine Sort Of and B and B Sightings



                              That empty road is being used again. 

They are installing a compressor at the CPF-B ( I found out what the letters stand for. Central Production Facility–B ) .  A is on the other side of the ranch, not accessed through my gate.  The compressor should be here by the end of this week.  It will help to eliminate some of the gas so that the wells will be able to produce more oil.  The crews have been, for the most part, working  M thru F, although they may work this weekend once the compressor is here.  My guess is that they will be here through next week, although it may only take one or two  to get it on line.  Who knows, we’ll just have to wait to see what happens, probably more tankers will come in. 

So far, someone is here by about 5:30 in the morning and then within an an hour, most every one is back on site by 8;00.  At times I may have up to 5 vehicles in line waiting to sign in.  I clear the line fairly quick, as take down the essential information and fill in the rest in between entries.  Once in a while, during the day, someone will leave and come back.  That accounts for multiple entries for one vehicle. 

The guys are really nice, offering to get ice or what ever I might need, and I certainly appreciate that.  I am pretty well set for my daily needs when my sister, Evelyn comes with my mail and groceries, but it’s the ice that I run out of.  This morning Tino gave me ice from his own supply on his way out and will replenish his supply from an ice maker that he has access to.  Thanks Tino!

Once everyone is in, other than the ones that come and go, it is fairly quiet and I can take short naps, then around 4:00 pm, it is a couple of mass exoduses.  Most everyone is gone by 5:30 pm.  Sometime after 8:30 pm, I turn on the lights, wait a couple of hours to see if any tankers come in before I close the gate. If I’m lucky, I can get a full night’s sleep.  Once I’m out of here, it will feel weird, not hearing that bell go off every time a wheel goes over it.  There is a gate across the road and some times I hear their bell in the middle of the night and I’m up to check.  Of course, that’s usually just after I’ve dozed off.  There is something wrong with the bell line where they enter the gate.  Sometimes it doesn’t work.  So, sometimes I don’t hear when a truck comes in.  If I’m busy or napping I can miss them, but fortunately they will either honk their horn or knock on the door.  They are very conscientious and know that they have to sign in.  A big thank you to all of them.  Johnny, the one that supplies my diesel and water will come out to repair or replace it.

I am so ready for this gig to be over.  I would, however, do it again, but for no more than 3 months at one time and not in the summer, at least not as a single in the summer.

Since Sunday, there have been more Birdie and Bunny sightings.  I actually got a picture of the Road Runner (RR) taking a (dust) bath.

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                         RR dust bath                   2nd pic, dark spot with the rock is the puddle

As you can see from the 2nd picture, the puddle from the A/C dripping isn’t big enough for real bath, but it is enough for them ( the Bs and Bs) to slake their thirst.

Angel is always on watch for those (Bs and Bs).  For the last few early mornings, I have been sitting outside while the parade of trucks come in the gate and she likes to sit on my lap.  It is kind of funny, inside when she sees a bunny or bird, she barks and scratches or tries to dig her way out, (hard to do on a pillow) to get to it, yet when outside, she sits on my lap and shakes or tremors, watches them intently with maybe a quiet low growl or none at all, but doesn’t try to get them.  I guess that she thinks that she is protecting me, because they stay away.      She is such a good girl.

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This is what she sees form her perch by the back window.  The puddle is right below where she sits.

That’s about it from the La Bandera Ranch Gate.  Take care and stay cool.

Thanks for visiting

100_2319 okay, where’s the next one?

Susan and Angel