It was Thursday night, 02 April 2009, at one of the Lariat Sandridge Energy oil rigs, south of Fort Stockton, Texas. There was an eerie calm outside while the men were busy working on the rig, but they couldn't help but notice the dazzling light display being played out right before them as they worked.
"I don't think I've seen lightning like that before as long as I've worked on these big rigs," Carl said thoughtfully. "Have you, Joe?"
"No, I can't say as I have," he answered, as he watched the thick shafts zig and zag towards the earth. "Somebody got a camera around here?"
"I've got one out in the truck," Bill yelled from the back of the group of about ten men that had formed to watch the show. "I'll go get it."
Just as Bill had turned to trot off and go get the camera, one of the men grabbed him by the arm and whispered in his ear, "Forget it. Get back to work--here comes Red," and with that, Bill went back to his station, never skipping a beat.
Red was a mammoth, barrel-chested man, with a head full of bright red hair, a beard, mustache and lamb-chop sideburns to match. Despite all the face hair, you could still clearly see the cleft chin and deep dimples on both cheeks, which were the perfect compliment to his sparkling, bright blue eyes.
On many occassions, the men had heard the women from the business office talk about what a handsome man Red was, and how they couldn't wait until he was ready to start dating again. They all babied him, brought him cookies, pastries, and all kinds of goodies, ever since his wife had died of uterine cancer two years earlier. Even though they were all jealous of the girls' attention to him, none of them would ever want to trade places with him and have to go through the pain that he had had to endure.
As Red stalked on to the platform, the men quickly scattered in the hopes that he hadn't noticed that they had been goofing off and congregating there, watching the lightning. "Bill!" Red yelled in to the darkness.
Bill swallowed hard, not sure he could answer. He knew he was in trouble now! "Yeah, Red?" he squeaked.
"Go get that camera!" Red commanded.
You didn't have to ask him twice, for Bill was off and running. He was back with his camera in a matter of a couple of minutes. Slowly, the men were gathering back together again at the platform, and watched as Bill handed the camera to Red.
"Well, come on!" Red demanded. "Come on over and gawk if you have to, because I know you won't get anymore work done tonight until these dern pictures have been taken, so let's get it over with!"
Everybody started laughing because they all knew he was just kidding. He was so easy to work for. He was such a fair man, and he'd give them the shirt off his back, if that's what you needed.
"Here, you taken them," Red said, handing the camera back to Bill. "It's your camera!"
So, as Bill prepared for his shot, the men lined up around him and waited in anticipation. "Take a bunch of pictures!" one of the men said, just as Bill was about to click. Now he'd have to get ready all over again. Bill was nervous being watched.
"Give him a little bit of room," Red said, sensing his unease, and Bill flashed him a grin. Now he was ready. This was going to be a great shot. He was going to click right when the lightning flashed! Bill took a deep breath, waited, it was almost time, he could feel it, and then he clicked!
Now...let's see what you've got! Pick the story up from where I left off, and write how you would finish this little story, just for fun, ok?
Until next time...stay safe, stay well, and may God bless you all.
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