A Few Good Men
The cast in order of appearance:
Henry XIII …… The Schoodle
Larry……………. Field Supervisor 1 Jamey and Jamie… The Riggers
George………….. Field Supervisor 2 Bubba…………… The Rancher
Jo Jo…………….. The Safety Trainer
Jimbo…………… The Company Man
When I first considered gate guarding, my main concern was safety: two women and a 17 lb Schnoodle. Henry the VIII (because he’s my 8th dog) was the teacher’s pet in Dog Obedience at 9 months. He became a certified pet-therapy dog at 11 months. He’s sweet and smart.
He’s 3 now and is also a conflict resolution dog. So smart and to the point, he throws up if there’s a conflict. It’s an effective technique. Winning an argument often isn’t worth the emotional clean up. With Henry it isn’t worth the physical clean-up either.
Although practically perfect the one thing Henry isn’t is a watch dog. He virtually never barks. Well, at least he never barked until Heidi taught him to bark at the Longhorns in Tilden. Now he rumbles at the calves through the screen door. He’s a sweet companion, but no protection.
In 6 weeks of gate guarding we’re continually asked if we have guns. If you’ve been following this blog you know that, yes, Heidi has a 22 derringer that a non-Texas resident can’t buy ammo for… and no, we can’t buy a shotgun because we aren’t Texas residents.
Our friend Jeff says: “No guns? So then you’re basically just keeping the good guys out?”
So far, we’ve met a lot of good guys. Larry was our first Field Supervisor. He’s the one that crawled in through the window and pried the RV door apart when the latch permanently latched itself. Larry told us (and most of his gate guards) where he keeps his RV key and to go in and help ourselves to anything we need, anytime.
Jamey with a y is from Louisiana and Jamie with an ie is from Mississippi. Both along with most of the guys, ask regularly if they can get us anything on their trips to town.
A Jamie (ie) quote: “You betcha,babe… I mean ma’am!” (It only took him about a quarter of a second to realize I’m about 30 years past ‘babe’ status! 😉
Our FS now is George. He prays for our safety ( I guess that‘s comforting, not quite sure?). When he stops by, he sits in the truck until the southern gospel song he’s listening to ends. He tells us which radio station to listen to, even though we’ve told him many times we don’t have a radio.
Bubba owns the ranch we (and the drill crew) live on along with the chickens and the cows. Bubba drives a very nice white Ford pickup and wears a white hat. He’s unfailingly polite and courteous. I don’t have a picture of him but I do have a picture of the dinners he brought us from his Super Bowl party.
A Bubba quote: “Well now, I brought 25 steaks in for the fellas tonight but I wanted you ladies to have a whole meal.” Apparently he has us pinned as hearty eaters! I didn’t know people ate steaks and brats together, but it was so nice of him.
JoJo is the Safety Trainer for the rig. He spent 2-3 hours carrying wood and trying to fill in the hole under the RV to try to help us level on this soft pad. He did it in the heat and with a sense of humor. He checks on us each night when he leaves.
A JoJo quote: “If these guys give you any trouble, you just let me know and I’ll take care of it.” He’s a really sweet, soft spoken kind of guy. I can’t imagine how he’d “take care of it” but I don’t doubt he’s a man of hid word.
Jimbo is The Company Man which means he’s the top guy here. The first couple they assigned to this site wouldn’t stay because the pad was ‘too soft’ and they just didn’t like it here. So Jimbo wasn’t in a real pleased by the time we arrived a couple of hours later. He was already unhappy with Gate Guard Services and he clearly didn’t know what to make of having 2 women at his site. About once a day he walks the plank across the cattle crossing to convey some message. I think, initially, he was just trying to decide what he thought of us. Now he comes by to vent or share info or to offer some kind of help. Mostly, I think he just comes over to check on us and make sure we’re doing OK. He constantly asks how his guys (the dozen who live on site) are treating us. He says he starts every meeting every day by telling them to show respect … Not sure if that’s toward us or him or each other or all inclusive.
“Persons with weight of character carry, like planets, their atmospheres along with them in their orbits.” ~Thomas Hardy
The atmosphere is pretty fine here. I’ve come to know more than a few good men and I’m grateful. As for my own conduct, in deference to Henry VIII: “My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am.” ~Author Unknown:”