For twenty five years I have traveled from Boothville, LA to West Texas and everywhere in between. My days were filled with crew changes, office visits, site visits, oilfield events and trade shows.
In March, Louisiana went on lock down for “two weeks”. Initially it seemed like an unexpected inconvenience. What’s two weeks going to hurt if it helps others?
Nine months later, historically low oil prices and hurricane after hurricane, (after hurricane), here we are!! We feel completely disconnected and are faced with adjusting to a new way.
I started my new job at Onward the day the state shut down. What about my schedule? My plan? I wasn’t even able to go into offices to hand out my new business cards!
How was I going to develop new accounts without face to face meetings?
Cue the entrance of a category 5 hurricane headed straight for us. Many were told to evacuate, but we had questions! We are on lock down, where do we go, what do we do?
Without much of a break, two additional storms come in and create extensive damage to the communities where our friends, family, clients, and coworkers live and work. Once the damage was done, we had additional questions. Do we follow the rules of staying inside or get out and help our communities rebuild?
We came together. We always do. Somehow, against all odds, we figure things out.
In Louisiana the oilfield is a big family. We greet each other with hugs and headlocks. We have crawfish boils and barbecues. We don’t email each other (who does that?), we just show up. We carpool to meetings and trainings and call them road trips.
I sometimes wonder..does the truck stop in Fourchon and Moran’s miss us? Is the A- frame camp in Toledo Bend bored without us? Does Fin Feather Fur and LAGCOE think we are mad? Do the golf courses think we’ve moved? What about all the donuts and kolaches that just sit there waiting to be delivered to crew changes? Do they feel abandoned? Is anyone feeding my heliport employees now that I can’t visit? (Do you see what happens to our minds as we spend too much time at home?) This new way has us feeling uneasy and empty. So we ask that you please be a little patient with us as we turn hugs into touching elbows. As we adjusting to not only working alone, but a lot of times from home. It’s no secret I don’t love teleconferences and emails, but we’re learning.
Each day has presented new challenges, a lot of creative out of of the box thinking and support from our leaders.
When it’s Louisiana’s hot and humid season, give us an extra minute to catch our breaths behind these masks. And just so you know, we still hold on to hope that we will have the biggest crawfish boil ever-sooner than later.