Many years ago I reviewed development well proposals for a field in Venezuela, and approved two, the second contingent on the first one. A few weeks later I get called to a meeting where they were about to confirm the selected surface spot where the location was supposed to be built, and found they had placed it about 150 meters from a house.
I dont like ruining relations with land owners, so i told them they had better move it away from the house, and i started getting protests from the construction manager, because the spot they had chosen was ideal as far as he was concerned.
I told them to arrange a meeting with the land owner at his house, that we would go over with the construction and field managers, a drilling engineer and a geologist to jointly decide where to put the darned well.
Prior to the visit i had the subsurface team get me map overlays showing the surface topography, structure and net pay so i could put them on the legal plats and aerial photos. And i noticed there was a really good spot much further from the house, located on a flat spot with excellent drainage towards a small creek. To make it even nicer, the spot was located where the fence made a right angle, so the location would be tucked in with a property fence on two sides.
I had them give me our standard pad layout, put it on the map, and picked a spot exactly 150 of my paces from the two fences.
The day we visited the farmer we asked him if he thought the current stake was to his liking, and he politely said it could be further away on account of the noise.
Then i told him, what the hell, i think we can find a spot where theres oil, and told everybody to follow me. I picked up a long stick and started walking around, got to the fence, and walked back 150 paces, turned 90 degrees and walked 150 paces to the other fence, all the time waving the stick in the air and stomping the ground with my boots.
So i had them put the stake where i had made the turn (which i knew was a good spot after reviewing the subsurface maps), and told them the oil was there, to prepare the location, and drill the well.
Imagine the hub hub in the field when they heard i was picking a location with a stick and stomping the ground with my boots. The hub hub was even louder when several months later the well came in at a bit over 2000 BOPD, about triple our average rate. I had them so faked they started questioning whether we needed geoscientists or reservoir engineers as long as i had my stick.