Monday, June 18, 2007

Trials of the Patch

I was scared to look.

MLH borrowed my Yukon XL while his Ford Powerstroke was being detailed and um…augmented (a nice term for plastic surgery) at TMP Truck and Trailer. I had rented another vehicle to help assist in this amazing transformation. (By the way, medical insurance doesn’t cover this type of augmentation, either!)

Items added:

1. Trac Top Jack Rabbit Tonneau Cover
2. Whistler Power Inverter hard wired into the truck - Eric would love this – it has huge wattage capacity, and doesn’t even hurt the truck power. Might be a little hard on the recumbent, though.
3. Jottodesk Rotating Computer Table for doing reports on location
4. Full out floor liners – this should have been a clue Ol’ Yukie might be in trouble
5. Auxiliary diesel tank

I know…you’re thinking I was scared to look at the bill for all of the above, right? Not even. Whatever will make MLH's life easier out there, I’m all for it.

Remember, we’re hard-working oil field trash. But the oilfield we live in isn’t exactly clean, though better than it was, say, 30 years ago. MLH is trying to modify his truck to be more of a tool and less of a pretty thing. Meanwhile, driving Yukie, MLH promised to maintain my truck daily. Lots of times in the past little bit, he would call me, and be going through the car wash. So I knew he was trying.

But – still…I was scared. Scared to see Yukie’s condition, once she was returned. Because I know my man – he’s a hands-on kinda guy – and it’s hard for him to stay spotless out there in the patch. He’s in and out of the truck, all day long. It’s hard for me to stay clean out there, too…but I have my truck washed and waxed every Monday morning so it’s ready for customers to go to lunch/meetings/shooting/whatever. When I’m leaving a location, I pull off my steel toe boots and coveralls and put them in my hauling box in the back cargo area. The one time I didn’t, I had some type of chemical on my boot, and it ate a little hole in my floor mat. I learned my lesson. The difference is, I’m leaving a location and probably headed to the office, or even home. MLH goes from location to location to location – no telling how many times a day he's in and out of his truck.

Back to the story at hand. Yukie was parked in the driveway all weekend and I never went and looked. I was too scared. I never said a word. And MLH kept warning me…“I tried hard to keep it clean, honey, but it’s pretty bad.” Finally, last night, when MLH was cleaning it out so we could take it for detailing, he called me out. I went. I looked.

My Yukon XL is equipped with “neutral tan” leather seats. Seats that fold down flat, for easy cargo hauling. Neutral tan carpet. I special ordered that stuff, because up until the not too distant past, GMC would pair tan seats with a grey dash and topliner. I hated that. I wanted all tan. So "neutral tan" it was. Not the greatest color for oilfield use - but it was 2004. Before they started using all black interiors. So I'm looking at Yukie, post MLH and I see stripes in my truck interior. Stripes of black, gooey…dirty, oily residue. Down the back of my seats, where something had been hauled…like a packer. Or a tubing anchor. Downhole tools, anyway. Downhole tools get really, really nasty. Paraffin. Oil. Dirt. Scale. And the same kinda goo in the back cargo area. And Yukie smelled…like oilfield. Bad H2S oilfield. 200 times worse than the smell that hits you when you drive past a refinery. I don't know how MLH was able to stand it.

I just shut my eyes. Turned away. And like a good esposa, said nothing. Went back into the house. I needed a Xanax. A drink. Calgon. Something. “Just sayin’”. (Karen– that was for you!)

MLH drove Yukie to the detail shop this morning - he wouldn't even let me drive her. I picked him up, brought him back to his truck. En route back, I started talking about the Ford Expedition I was renting – it is way comfortable, I liked the way it drove, it would look good in leather, it’s shorter than Yukie, probably gets better gas mileage, etc. MLH expressed his appreciation of this new vehicle as well. Even said (under his breath) something along the lines of “Honey, you might need to start looking for another truck.” I know I heard that (and I'm saving it for later), but I’m not quite ready to get rid of Yukie. Not yet. Maybe the guys at Expert Detail can work wonders.

Woo-hoo! They did! Here she is…

(disclaimer: the little dent in the front was from another MLH driving episode)

I picked Yukie up right before 6pm. The detailers did an excellent job. I cannot believe they got those stains out. I’m telling you, it’s a miracle. Ol’ Yukie’s back in the game!! MLH was very pleased. But it’s a good thing I’m not a smoker – whatever they used to clean this baby up has to be flammable. Whoooooey! Nose plugs, anyone?

Just sayin’.


Rach said...

Glad your car is all clean (it's such a horrible feeling when it isn't)...I was naughty and wrote in the dust on a friends car today. I wrote clean me hehe!

Anonymous said...

I would have a hard time not forgiving him because he was so sad about it, and had it detailed!

You've been tagged on my blog!

Winston said...

It is stunning what a good detailing can do for one. Goes for folks too. Heh... As to the odor, breathe deeply and enjoy it while it lasts. Folks pay big money for a high that good.

Let's see pics of the finished product of "augmentation".

Panhandle Poet said...

I can't seem to keep my pickup clean. My customers all seem to live in the mud!

Eric said...

I think the power on my recumbent is already inverted as it is. ;-)

I would never look at another man's truck with lust in my heart. But if I did...

Karen said...

I can't tell you how much I can relate to this post! Oilfield trash, unite!

The husband has gotten better in his old age, HA!, but it can still happen if he goes on location and doesn't have the chance to clean up before coming home, if he's driving.

He has taken my car before to job sites, usually to go offshore, and comes back with it filthy outside from the parking area and nasty inside from his dirt and trash from the travel. Spots of oil or muddy grease stuff appear from nowhere on the seats or floor mats.

He's no longer allowed to borrow my car as it is new and clean. I've had it 6 months now and I'm keeping it that way for a while. Fortunately with the new job he rides a desk instead of behind a wheel or on a plane.

I've been on an oil rig, one in dry dock for repairs in Galveston, and I saw up close and personal the trials and tribulations. Plus, I worked in the office of an oilfield pipe company in Lafayette and those guys were always filthy out in the yard.

Just sayin'.

Janie said...

Rach - thanks! You probably remember just how dirty stuff gets over here!

Ba Doozie - he's forgiven - remember, he said I could get a new vehicle!

Winston - though Yukie is cleaned weekly, that was her first detail. As to the high, it was over 100 degrees yesterday - so the smell is a tad exacerbated! I'll get you pix of the Powerstroke, I promise.

Panhandle - us, too. But we are not griping, we're liking this rain!

Eric - I knew you'd get a kick(back)out of that! And I think you'd look great in a powerstroke!

Karen - Woohoo! Oilfield trash, unite indeed! Now if we could find some pink leather work gloves!!

Just sayin'!