Those words were the theme of the 2016 Permian Basin International Oil Show, and they summed up the mood nicely.
by Jesse Mullins
ODESSA, TEXAS—For two solid days we cooked here under record high temps, frying under an impossibly malevolent October sun, and for the third day we came nigh to blowing away from howling, tent-flap-whipping, flag-snapping gale winds, but in the end the 2016 Permian Basin International Oil Show did what it always does. It brought the Basin oil biz together in one place and brought out the latest in hardware, heavy equipment, high tech, machinery, methodologies, breakthroughs, business-dealings, and people—people congregating together and forging alliances and friendships and finding ways to make things work.
The prevailing sentiment would have to be described as guarded optimism. A common response from exhibitors was that they were making connections—not as many deals were being made, but those generally happen after a show concludes, anyway—and exhibitors were convinced that their investment was worth it. Plus, they held their place in the show, a serious matter for any event where the waiting list for booth or outdoor space is lengthy.
We noticed that parking was much easier than in past installments of this show. Each day our team found parking spots in the front lot, just an easy stroll from the gate. It was a far cry from past events, where getting into the show meant motoring goodly distances from the gate and catching shuttles or simply shouldering one’s loads and trekking in afoot. This year’s show was clearly not as heavily attended. Nor was it as heavily patchworked with exhibits. But given the past two years’ hardships in the oilfield, one would have to say that this show was surprising for the turnout it DID muster. And while there were not so many high-masted rigs parked in the back lots and not quite so much rolling stock in straight-from-the-factory eye-popping paintjobs, still there was a goodly representation. A great representation, this year being what this year has been. It is a testament to the optimism people have—that things will just get better from here.
Enjoy our pictorial of some of the highlight scenes from the show. Find more photos in our online edition, at pbog.zacpubs.com.