Thursday, July 30, 2015

April through July Gate Guarding in Cotulla TX

We got a gate through Riata Oilfield Services, just 5 miles out of Cotulla, TX on the Northcut Ranch.  We felt blessed, because our gate had NO mud, and very very nice oilfield workers, whom we got to know pretty well in the 4 months we were there!


We did have an issue with rattle snakes – we saw 5 in a two week period, two of which the workers dispatched for us because they were under and/or near our motorhome (as in behind the back wheels).  That was exciting, and we did see several more but nowhere close to us so they got to live Winking smileIMG_2582IMG_2584


While there I joined the Ladies luncheon in Cotulla at the Baptist church, the first Tuesday of each month.  They have a wonderful patron who pays for the lunches to be catered in, and it was always very nice.  The best thing about it was that we got to network with the other guards, from all different companies, so we learned quite a bit about them!  We also had a lunch the 3rd Tuesday at a different restaurant each month, which really was nice too.  It’s a Godsend when you can get away from the gate and enjoy the company of others in the same lifestyle!


My friend, Judy Mott and her husband Dick got a gate the same day about 8 miles from us, so she went with me about every other week shopping to a ‘big’ store, HEB, WalMart, etc., because Cotulla just has a small Lowes grocery, and a couple dollar stores.  When we would go we’d have a late lunch, (Dick slept until 2, but on our days out he got up so we could leave at 1), then we’d shop, and arrive home about 6:30/7:00.  It was always nice to get away and stock up the cupboards!


Of course we treated ‘our’ workers on holidays, Memorial Day, 4th of July, etc.  I decorated our gate and made brownies, sometimes they would get tootsie roll pops, sometimes donuts, no bake cookies, goodie bags of bite sized candy bars…something almost every week.  They really enjoyed it, and we enjoyed treating them! 


We had planned to stay on the gate through March of next year, but we got the call on March 21 that our gate was closing and we had until 5 pm to vacate.  Well, we put it in high gear and were pulling out by 11:45.  We got back to our lot in Hondo, TX and set up by 3 pm.  We went to the local restaurant, The Cowboy for our first meal out together in 4 months.  Woohoo!


Then, last Thursday, we went to San Antonio and bought our new car.  My ‘old car’ was a 2005 Chevy Malibu, with 140,000 miles on it.  It was a great car, but we put a refurbished transmission in it back in Dec in DC and it had a 6 month warranty on it.  It was starting to shift hard, and then the AC went out in it July 17th.  We are members of USAA and I used their car buying service to purchase our new ride.  It is a 2015 Chevy Equinox, LT2 with all the bells and whistles…more than I need that’s for sure. 


We’ve had several outings since being back.  I have my name in several places for guard positions, including for 12 hour guard shack jobs.  I sure would love to have something, but we can’t work a real busy gate, since David’s COPD keeps him down quite a bit…but a 12 hour or 18 hour gate would work as long as it wasn’t horribly busy.  We’ll just see what opens up.  We have several dr appts coming up, the last one is Aug 19th for David.  If we have nothing lined up by then, we’ll be packing the car and heading to PA for Sept and Oct…returning to TX for winter.


All for now – I’ll report again in a few months, unless something major happens before then!

January, February, March Hondo Tx

We arrived at Lone Star Corral January 18th.  Our friends, Lynn and Joyce Marlatt were already there waiting for us, and they were almost our back door neighbors!  We immediately started showing them the area, and joining the wonderful Escapee friends at LSC.  Some of the things we did:

  • The Alamo
  • LBJ ranch tour
  • Outlet Mall in San Marcos
  • Visiting gate guard friends and fellow LSCer’s Gene and Linda Moreau
  • San Antonio river walk
  • Bill and Rosa’s for country fried steak
  • Pulled pork dinner at LSC
  • Mad Dogs Pub in San Antonio
  • Coopers BBQ in New Braunfels
  • Lunch bunch tea room in Uvalde (fantastic jalapeno soup)
  • Trade days in Boerne
  • The Brazilian Grill in North San Antonio (highlight of the trip)
  • 5 Days in Rockport where we walked on the beach and pier, had breakfast on the bay, went to the boiling pot for a dinner, and since we were parked right on the bay had wonderful views every day!
  • Welcome Winter Texans lunch in Uvalde
  • Sabinal bean supper
  • Valentines dinner at LSC
  • German dinner in Fredericksburg
  • Breakfast and shopping at the Old Spanish Trail in Bandera
  • Omelets in a bag (Peggy’s kitchen)
  • Many days of ‘just driving around’
  • Car show at Womack Chevrolet in Castroville
  • Mercado in San Antonio (Mexican shopping plaza)


Before Lynn and Joyce left, our friends Len and Phyllis East came to LSC for a month, and they joined in on some of the fun stuff too!  Also we had visitors Joe and Sandy Fryberger from Longmont, CO came and stayed 2 nights.  We sure wish we would have had more time with them all!


On March 16th we left LSC for a gate at Northcut Ranch, with Riata Oilfield Security Services.  We were hoping to get a gate and just kind of fell into this one, and we love it.  It is now May 4th, and we are planning to stay here until at least next spring (if the job holds out).  It will be a long hot summer in south TX, but the kitty is crying the blues, and we have to make some money.  We really enjoy the Cotulla area, even though it is in the desert pretty much.  We’ve got some great wildlife here at the gate – cows, deer, turkey, eagles, rabbits, road runners, rattle snakes, coyotes, cardinals, and many birds we don’t know, but they’re fun to watch.  We’ve gotten to know quite a few of our ‘workers’ and so far I’ve made them brownies and no bake cookies.