By late afternoon and almost quitting time, I had concocted and rehearsed several lectures that they were going to be subjected to when they showed up. It's unfortunate that I did not write them down for posterity, because I thought they were darned good lectures on all sorts of subjects from goofing off on the job to proper rig maintenance. By now, I was certain that the equipment had broken down or that someone had been seriously hurt. I knew that I was going to get a call from either a hospital or the tow-truck company any minute.
Finally, a little after quitting time, the pump-pulling rig pulls into the yard and my three guys pile out, obviously tired but intact and not missing any limbs or digits. I went out into the yard to meet them and just as I was about to light off into lecture number one, they produced the pair of very well-rusted vise grips in the accompanying photograph. Well, so much for lecturing anyone about anything: I was just thankful they made it back all right and had accomplished the job. So, I bit down hard on my tongue for a little bit while I listened to the story of how the job went.
Some “pump guy” or someone at some time must have been using these two vise grip pliers to clamp and support the 1-inch schedule 80 PVC drop pipe and somehow everything got away from him. Our ranch customer probably is the third owner of this well, so all records and knowledge of this incident are lost to history. However, if any reader thinks these might be his vise grips, it would be advisable not to claim them. This rancher has voiced various opinions about the former owner of these vise grips, which have included numerous allegations toward severe bodily harm if the former owner should dare to step forward and want his vise grips back.
This pair of vise grips has been laying down this well on top of the pump for about 20 years, silently waiting for someone to just dare to try and get this pump away from them. What should have been a pretty straightforward and quick job turned into an all-day project, but the pump is out and the cause of the trouble was captured. I'm going to make a pegboard display box for the office wall and start a museum with these two vise grips.