Along the Natchez Trace

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Our New Adventure Begins...

Bill & I spent most of this past week getting ready for our latest endeavor...  as gate guards in south Texas.

We may be guarding a gate in a remote area but even if it's not remote, this is a 24/7 job.  One of us must be "on the job" to record the in and out traffic at all hours.  Since this is our first time doing a job like this we can only guess what it will be like or whether we are truly suited for it.  

I'm assuming that we will only head to the nearest town when we need groceries or the laundromat, and, of course, only one of us will go.  We're told we will have electricity, water and a dump station, so it's not exactly like we'll be boondocking.  However, our fridge isn't very big, so we'll be limited as to how much fresh veggies we can keep.

I had written earlier that Bill took the concealed weapon class so that he could carry in Texas.  I will mention here that having a firearm in one's motorhome is not permitted while working this job.  Alcohol is also prohibited and we could be subject to drug or alcohol tests at any time.  

That was my silly sense of humor speaking when I wrote of speaking Spanish to the illegals.  If any of you have lived in areas where the illegals attempt entry, you know that the last thing they want is to encounter people, no matter if that is a person of authority or just average everyday folks like us.  

Celeste fixed a wonderful dinner last evening...  grilled veggies, salmon...  and the best bacon wrapped/cheese stuffed jalepenos I've ever eaten.  What a send off!

So this morning, we hooked up and ran through out check-list.

Hmmm...  the brake lights and turn signals weren't working.  After about 20 minutes of checking everything out, Bill gave some little box under the hood a whack...  and the lights have worked since.
Everything's ready...  just after 8am this morning we said our goodbyes and headed south. 

There were a lot of wildflowers along the highway, but I never did get a good shot of any.  These bluebonnets and Indian paintbrush are just a few of the many species we saw. 

As we neared these colorful tents, we speculated on what they were.  Our 3 guesses were 1) a circus  2) a casino  3) a church revival.
Hope I don't sound too irreverent, but they do kinda resemble each other in a way....
Well, it was a church and tent revival...
And, no, we didn't stop.

We drove down Rt 281, to San Antonio.  There we caught I35.
 We've spent some time here in the past, so nothing drew us into the city.  But if you ever get a chance, it's really fun eating at that revolving restaurant at the top of that space needle.

On past San Antonio...  to Rt 85, then to Highway 468.
A distance of 315 miles from when we left Glen Rose, Tx this morning at 8am, we arrived at this RV park around 4pm.  Yeah, the speed limit is 75 most of the way, but Bill never drives our rig that fast, and we made a few stops for lunch and breaks.
This is the entrance to the RV park where we're at.
It's a locked gate, but we had the key code to enter.
We quickly got parked and set up.  

After sitting in the rig all day we were both ready for a walk.

The wildflowers are blooming here.  Even the prickly pear cactus is blooming, but I didn't get a photo of that yet.

Right now (6:30 pm) the outside temperature is 100 degrees.
After being cold for so long, I'll have to admit that it feels pretty good to me.
That's Bill...  walking down the dirt road in this RV park...  We'll be here in this RV park until a gate position comes open...  may be a day or two...  may be longer.  There's no cost to us and we have our phone and internet, as well as a full hook-up.  We're ready for our next adventure.

That's All For Today!


  1. Glad you arrived safely and are all settled in. I am surprised that you can not have a firearm at your new job. How do you protect yourself in a remote area?

    The wildflowers are so pretty!

  2. One hundred!

    Here today in the Pacific Northwest it's 44. I'm not a fan of heat, but 100 sounds nice for a change.

  3. Well, those two requirements ( guns & no alcohol ) rules it out for us taking a gate guard position. I don't drink and shoot the gun at the same time, but a cold beer late in the day is always welcome. You can have our spot.

    I know you guys will make an adventure of this, so I will be checking the blog often. Have fun.

  4. Don't carry a weapon, but I do like a glass or two of wine in the evening. Guess that's one of many reasons gate guarding doesn't appeal to me. Good luck!

  5. That last picture with the mesquite tree lets you know right away you are in west Texas. Enjoy your stay and seclusion.

  6. Wow 100 degrees at 6p.m. - don't think I could take that!! I hope this adventure works out for you. At least it will be an experience you will remember for a long time. Have fun.

  7. I like the description of your adventures. It always amazes me that everything is locked up. The only thing we lock is our house and car. Everything else is wide open.

  8. We've been gate guarding just a few days short of two months. However, we are about 70 miles north of Houston. No 100 degree weather here, thank you!

    Hubby also had a concealed carry. The company we work for lists in the rules no alcohol or weapons. If we were some place we felt was unsafe it would be an issue. That is not the case here.

    As far as only one person leaving the site at a time, we have managed it okay. We are only 12 miles from town (Huntsville) to do shopping and laundry and go to post office.

    It's a new adventure for us too. We would not want to do it longer than a 3 month stretch. We expect to be done next week. We do want to come back to this area next year and do it again.

    Good luck to you in your newest adventure. Hope you get a site real soon but, hey, not paying a campground isn't a bad deal for now either!

  9. 100 - it's not that hot here on the coast, yet. Don't suppose there are any gates nearby the gulf breezes.

  10. I'm interested in how you do in your new position. It sounds like a good paying job that doesn't last too long. Good luck, I hope you get a good place to guard.

  11. I hope you enjoy your new adventure!

  12. Hey, if you jump on I-35 and head north to Minnesota, when you get to St Paul just go west on the Larpenteur at the exit for two miles and you're at my house. If you miss the exit, you'll wind up in Duluth which is where I-35 ends. We are having snow again this week so you'll get away from the 100 degree heat.

  13. The strange thing about hand guns is that I seldom ever read about an owner actually using one for self-protection. Most of the time, the guns end up being used to accidentally kill other family members or in suicides.

    It certainly is one of the biggest differences in culture between Canada and the U.S. Here, in Canada, I've never felt the need to own a gun for safety (besides, it's against the law) no matter where I am or what I'm doing.

    I feel the same way while traveling anywhere in the U.S. as well.

    Good luck with your gate-guarding duties.

  14. Good luck on your new gate assignment. Don't know if we will try that once we are on the road but will look forward to your posts to see how it works out.

    24 months til we are on the road. Kris/Ohio (Meandering Jaxs)

  15. I'm with Rick on the gun issue. one hundred degrees? oh, lord, Sharon! I'm also with Clark ... you guys will make an adventure out of this ... not my thang ~ I'm a Seville thang kinda kid... ;)

    lots of good luck ~ can't imagine not being able to have a cold beer in Texas!? wth

  16. Sharon, this new adventure does seem rather isolated after your last 2 months. I'm thinking that gate guarding must pay fairly well for folks to want to do it for extended periods of time.

  17. I signed up to follow. I'm interested to see how your adventure goes. My spouse retires this June. Last year we bought an RV and we've talked about doing something like camp hosts once he is retired. Not sure I'd like being a gate guard in a remote area, but I'm all up for adventure.