After about two weeks off, we have settled into a new gate near Gonzales, Texas. We got a lot of things done, along with some playtime, but it was time to get back to work.
Since gate guarding has become a vocation for us, we carry a ton of stuff we feel is necessary to make the job easier. This includes two Dish and one Exede (for internet) satellite dishes, a phone booster and antenna, a window air conditioner, several computers and TV's plus all the wiring and connections to make all that work. We know some guards that get by on whatever TV signal they can snatch from the air and rely on Wi Fi or whatever internet they can get through their phones. We tried "nickel dimeing" it with an air card when we first started gate guarding. It barely worked and gave us a whopping one megabyte of data a month. As it stands now; we have 10 megabytes (plus unlimited data from midnight till 5 a.m.) with Exede and somewhere between 10 and 20 megabytes on our phones. Anyway, all this stuff has to be connected, and the first few days on the gate require that time be allotted for these tasks. The August heat has been unrelenting, making these tasks even more daunting. Once we're done, we have a cool RV all sat up for the information age. I never cease to be amazed that, in some of the remote locales that we inhabit, we have a climate controlled habitat with internet and TV.
Our ability to transition from spot to spot has improved remarkably. Sure, we still have hiccups now and then; like slideout failures, but it normally isn't a hassle. What we haven't figured out, is how we continue to see folks out there that look so clean and neat as they do the RV "thing". After the removal of sewer and water hoses, jack pads, power cords, wheel chocks et all, we are tired, dirty, sweaty and a bit grumpy. And that's when things go well. I guess working out of the RV is bit different than doing the weekend warrior thing.
On our trip to Gonzales we were saddened and surprised to see diesel priced at under $2.15 a gallon. Challenging times are ahead for the petroleum industry as oil continues to drop in price. We could and probably will see oil under $30 a barrel before long. We had heard all kinds of dire predictions about the viability of directional drilling at $58 a barrel, much less at the current prices. While things have slowed, the rig count has actually ticked upward a bit. Unfortunately, unless things improve, there will most likely be a lot of stacking in the near future. It would be nice to have our leadership stand up to OPEC and others and moderate the flow of oil. I don't see that happening anytime soon, so things could get interesting.