Monday, 13 April 2015

Blacklight Candelabra: My dad lives on an oilfield


At last, at the age of 100 years in September, he will become rich, his surroundings are swimming on oil according to the latest information. My dad lives in an extra care home, average age of the 41 inhabitants from 80-90 so it looks like they will all be celebrating. The oil actually exists beneath Gatwick Airport in the county of Surrey in England. My dad lives in Dagenham in the county of Essex, but this only being a mere matter of kilometres away, what could possibly go wrong.

Actually a lot could go wrong. To remove so much oil you naturally have to employ all modern technical help. There used to be oil wells drilling in the ground, we all remember The Ewing Family who lived in a little American town called Dallas, they earned millions with their oil, but even their oil wells were not next door. Those pumps looked so picturesque with their regular up and down movements, pumping away. Of course it was a matter of time, and time costs money. My dad might not live in Gatwick, but who cares. Why should the scots get all the oil when England also has its faire share.

There is one little problem, someone might get an idea of removing the oil with fracking. We all know what that is, or do we? No problem, it just needs 1-8 million gallons of water to complete a fracking job. Not only water, but a few hazardous chemicals are added to the water to make it more interesting and to give a better result I suppose. I am no expert. So dad’s oil adventure is now becoming expensive. Perhaps he will not become as rich as I thought he would, but there is more.

This liquid mixture of chemicals is forced into the rock basis in the area where the rich rewards are to be found. The high pressure causes the rock to crack and simsabim, the natural gas flows through the cracks in the rock into a well. What could be better? A lot really. Possibly the area around this rock fracking could become contaminated with methane gas and chemicals possibly leading to contamination of the water supplies.

Let’s not get too pessimistic. They have found oil where dad lives, one of the most densely populated areas of England, all flowing towards Greater London. Dear old London will become rich, they will be a second Dallas and dad will become a millionaire, although there might be a few problems but you can always drink beer or wine when the water is suddenly blue or red or otherwise.  But who cares, everyone is fracking today, it is modern, it is the way to get rich quick.

Luckily dad only reads the sports results in the newspaper and the television programme. If I spoke to him about fracking he would probably tell me off for swearing. I think my dreams of becoming a millionaire’s daughter are dwindling as the golden sun sinks slowly on the fracking fields of oil.


  1. We live near your Dad and I don't think we're going to be getting rich any time soon but I'm not sure about fracking either. I think we need to be looking for renewable sources of energy.

    1. Mum and dad moved to Dagenham when our house in Bethnal Green was demolished because dad worked for Fords. After many years in Oxlow Lane (you know it perhaps) he is now in a very good care home. He has his own appartment and is well looked after. I am glad as I live in Switzerland, but I phone him once a week and generally pay a visit once a year. I read about the discovery of oil beneath Gatwick airport and the theme for this challenge was an amusing title, but with less humerous content and so I found it fit. I don't think they will find more than a pot of oil eventually. Fracking is a dangerous unknown modern development. The Americans find it the solution to all problems, but I find it the cause of all problems. Who knows?