Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Tuesday morning we were up bright and early to make our last drop there in New Stanton,NJ. When you take the exit, they actually have signs for Super Valu and where truck traffic needs to go. Boy I wish that all shippers and receivers were that way! I managed to get in and get delivered and was back to the truck stop by around 0930. J managed to get some good non moving sleep and I chilled in the truck while I waited for our next load.

Finally around 1400 we get a load assignment. Deadhead about 250 miles to Springfield,OH and pick up a load going to Elizabeth,NJ by 1000 the next morning. By the time we stopped and got fuel, got the trailer washed out, got something to eat to go, made it to the shipper, got our trailer, got the correct paperwork, got scaled and FINALLY got on the road, it was close to 2200 hrs. Going through the mountains of PA was a little slow but J managed to get me 300 miles closer to destination so when he got me up at 0300 I only have 273 miles to go. By the time it was daylight it had started to snow on me. Luckily nothing was sticking and I was able to make it to the receiver with 45 minutes to spare. After getting the runaround on where I needed to go to check in, I finally get to a dock and about 3 hours later I get unloaded and we are out of there.

With no where in Jersey to really park the truck, we stopped at the first travel plaza we came to and began our wait for our next load. After a while we sent in a message that we were getting out of the truck to grab something to eat. Sure enough, when we got back in the truck we had our next load. The only problem is that it doesn't pick up until the 2nd between 1500-1700 hours and it is less than an hour away. Realizing that we were going to spend close to 48 hours here in Jersey, I set out to find a hotel that had truck parking and allowed pets. I found a place in the town that we are picking up that had truck parking but they wanted an extra $50 each night for the dog. I laughed and said "No thanks" and hung up. I then decided to go with the trusty Motel 6 website and see if they had anything close by. What do you know? They have one about 13 miles away on I-287 and it is on the way to our pick-up. I knew that they would accept pets, but did they have truck parking? Usually when we stay at a Motel 6 we are bobtailing and most don't have room for the trailer, but I decided to call anyway and check. Today was our lucky day because they do indeed have room. She even put me on hold to see if any other trucks were parked out there. She said no trucks were there and the parking lot was pretty empty so we shouldn't have a problem getting in the lot. So we rounded up and were on our way within 5 minutes. I didn't want anyone else to check in and possibly block me from getting the truck in there. It was tight getting in and I will have to back out of where I had to park to get turned around in the parking lot to get out, but we are safe and warm and tucked in for the next two nights.

I had a feeling that we would end up getting stuck here. I even told my FM that if we didn't get a load that we were going to spend New Years Eve at Times Square! Of course we didn't find out about the load until too late, but it was a good plan. There is always next year. Tonight we are probably heading to bed way before midnight. J didn't get much sleep today because I woke him up to help me find the place we delivered. If you have read my blog for a while, you know that I really dislike this part of the country because everytime we get sent here we get lost! But anyway, he probably only got about 4 hours of sleep today. I guess it is a good thing that we are having to wait on a load. The load we dropped today covered our fixed costs for the week and the next load we pick up on Friday is a darn good paying load and will all be profit. Not bad considering we are taking two days off this week!

Monday, December 29, 2008

New Stanton,PA

First off, let me apologize for not posting the Christmas pictures like I promised. I have tried three times and can't get them loaded. Not sure what the problem is.

Last I posted we were in Lubbock and now we are in New Stanton,PA. How did we get here you ask? Well, sit back and I will tell you!

Saturday morning we got up from my Mom's house and were in the truck at 0550 ready to start the day. We had received our work assignment the night before and I knew then that we would have problems. It said we were to pick up an empty trailer at the Sam's Club there in Lubbock. I knew right then that there wouldn't be a trailer there because they only have, I believe, three docks. It is a store, not a warehouse. Sure enough, we get there and there are no empty trailers to be found. So we send in a message asking to head to the Walmart DC in Plainview,TX to get an empty there because that is on the way. While we were waiting for an answer we went to get fuel at the Rip Griffins. Still no answer after we fuel so I head north to Plainview. I had only made it about 3 miles and we get a message asking where we are at. They tell me to go back to the Rip Griffins because he has a truck that can bring me an empty. Thinking that the truck is in Lubbock, I turn around to go wait. Two hours later and four unanswered messages later, I call in to find out what the hell is going on. Of course by now the night shift that I was dealing with has gone home and weekend day shift has come in. I get ahold of James and he looks and tells me that the truck that is bringing me an empty is in Amarillo, but he is on his 10 hour break so it will be a while. WTF? If I would have had a trailer right off the bat when we left that morning I would have made it to our pick up with about 30 minutes to spare. After this fiasco, I tell him to notify the shipper that we will be at least two hours late and then tell him I am going to Plainview to get an empty like I should have done to start with. He tells me that he shows several empties there so it isn't a problem. Now why couldn't night shift have just done that to start with?? UGH!! OK, northbound I go....

I find an empty trailer there with no problem and then head the next 229 miles to Elk City,OK where I am supposed to pick up at noon. I make it in there at 1445. Luckily it wasn't a problem and I was at a dock getting loaded within 30 minutes. Another hour or so there, head out, scale and then finally we are on the road around 1730. Now we have to be in Upper Marlboro,MD by 0100 on Monday morning and this is Saturday evening. We pushed it, stopping only to fuel and walk Smokey and made it in there about an hour early this morning. Whew! They got us unloaded right at 0300 and J woke me up to start my shift.

Our next drop (this load has 3 drops) is a short 138 miles away in Philadelphia. Not far, but I was worried about traffic so I wanted to head straight in and beat the traffic if I could even though our appointment wasn't until noon. Traffic was amazingly light, so I made one stop for a while to walk Smokey and figure out exactly where I was going once I got into the city. We delivered down on Front Street which is directly south of Downtown on the map so I wasn't sure what it would be like getting in and out of there. I pulled up at 0845 local time and checked in on the off chance that they would go ahead and take me, and sure enough, I was at a dock inside of 15 minutes and within an hour of the time I arrived, I was pulling out of the dock. I love it when things go smoothly, especially after the way this load started.

Ok, now off I trek to our final destination in New Stanton,PA. This appointment is at 0700 local tomorrow morning. That means that we had extra time this afternoon. I got us to a truck stop about 10 miles from the shipper at around 1500 local so we have all afternoon and evening to just be lazy. First order of business was a shower, then something to eat, and now here I am chillin in the truck updating you guys on what we have been up to. I'm really mad that the pictures won't post, but maybe in the next few months I will figure out the problem and get the Christmas pictures on here!

Also, if anyone can help me.... I got a Phillips MP3 player for Christmas and I can't figure out how the hell to download songs on it. I figured out how to do it from a CD by loading that in the computer, but I can't download them from on the web. I got on Napster and that is a cluster. My brother said you can do it from there but it is really difficult because of where it download the songs to on your computer. Like you have to go search for media/audio files. It doesn't download straight to my music folder, or whatever the hell it is supposed to do. So someone please help if you know how!!!!! Thanks! Oh, and it isn't an i-Pod so I can't use i-Tunes.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Day After Christmas! - Lubbock,TX

Other than having a horrible head cold, this has been a great Christmas. We got into Lubbock on Monday and I think I blogged about that. Tuesday my mom and I finished up some shopping while J helped my dad do some work on his fence. Wednesday J and I went back over to my dad's to help him finish the fence. Basically I supervised since I still wasn't feeling good. :) Then we headed back to my mom's house and we started on the baking for the Christmas dinner.

Wednesday evening was spent making the dressing and an apple pie. Diane, if you read this, that sour cream apple pie was DELICIOUS! I have to admit I was a little leary of trying it because of the sour cream. When I first glanced at the recipe I thought it said cream cheese. You know how you get your mind on a certain train of thought. Anyway, when I wrote the recipe out to go shopping that is when I noticed it was sour cream. I thought, what the heck, I will try it. And boy am I glad I did. It was a hit!

We went to bed tired that night and got up the next morning to finish making the spread. My brother and his wife and their two girls were all coming over in the afternoon for a late Christmas lunch. We had a great dinner and then all of us went to the movies to go see Bedtime Stories. It was ok. I'm not a huge Adam Sandler fan, but it was pretty good considering. There were some really funny parts. I took some pictures and I will post them in the next post.

We were going to head out today but we decided to push it out until tomorrow morning. I really need another day to recouperate. I could use two more days, but if we want to get in a load before payroll cutoff then we need to head out tomorrow. We already have a load and know where we are going, which is up to Pennsylvania with a final drop on Tuesday morning at 0700. I am keeping my fingers crossed that the weather cooperates with us.

Today we went back over to my dad's for a while after my mom went to work to build a box to hold the Qualcomm then we went out to eat and headed back to mom's to finish packing up so we will be ready to head out in the morning. That is all for now. I'm going to post those Christmas Pictures now!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


I have a horrible head cold so I will just hit on the hightlights of the past few days. We left California and got a load that delivered at 0100 on Thursday morning so that worked perfect for us. We delivered the load and hit a truck stop for a few hours to get some sleep Then we dropped off the trailer and were officially on vacation. We did some running around and then headed over to Michelle's house where we usually stay when we are in town.

J cooked us a great dinner Thursday night and we went to bed pretty early. We had planned on spending Friday with the kids but Justin's flight got cancelled. It worked out ok though because Michelle was having her birthday party at her house Friday night and we got to go to it since we weren't getting to see the kids.

Justin and his girlfriend decided to drive in instead of waiting on the later flight on Sunday so they got in around midnight on Saturday night. This also worked out because we had already made plans to go out with some of our other friends that night. The only thing that sucked was that we only had the truck with us since we took the car to my mom in Lubbock, so they had to come pick us up. Actually one of their friends was driving and picked them up then came and picked us up. So at the end of the night, we just spent the night with them then had them bring us back to Michelle's the next morning since they were heading that direction anyway for their early Christmas with his family.

After we got back to Michelle's on Sunday, we got rounded up and got things packed and headed down to see the kids. We did a bit of last minute shopping on the way. We met them for dinner at Babe's Chicken then went bowling after that with them. We got to meet Jessica's boyfriend which was a BIG deal because she hasn't really dated a lot, and the few others that she has dated were not deemed important enough to meet Dad but she wanted us to meet this one. We had a really nice time and her boyfriend is a nie young man. Of course Justin and his girlfriend Nicole were there but we had already met her last time we were in Chicago. We finished bowling around midnight and after saying our goodbyes, we headed to find a place to spend the night. We were just going to stay in the truck but the only 2 truck stops were full so we turned around and went back up to a Motel 6 and got a room. We got to bed around 0100 and then got up at 0800 to get ready to head to Lubbock.

This would be on Monday morning that we headed to Lubbock and I woke up with the absolute worst head cold. I drove us to Sweetwater,TX but I had to have J drive the rest of the way. I just felt miserable. Once we got in I took a nap and J went over to my dad's to look at the fence that we were going to help him with. This morning J got up and went back over there and helped dad actually get part of the fence pulled down and got some of the posts in the ground. Tomorrow he is going back over there to help him finish. I didn't go today but I am hoping I can go for a few hours tomorrow. I want to see him, but I didn't want to be outside in the cold today since I was sick.

So that is what we are doing. J is taking a nap at the moment but is going to get up around 1900 and him and my brother and some of his friends are going to go hog hunting. Actually it is just an excuse to get away from the women folk and drink whiskey and tell lies. I am on to their plan, but I don't care. I know after being in the truck with me 24/7 that he deserves a night out with the guys. Mom is cooking some soup and we will have that for dinner and then I am going to bed. I really hope that I can get to feeling better before Christmas day when my brother and his family are coming over. I don't want to get his girls sick and ruin their Christmas break.

Our plans are to head back out on Friday but that is going to depend on the mail. J went in and upgraded his phone because his display wasn't working on his current phone. He upgraded to the BlackBerry Storm but they didn't have any at all in any of the Dallas area stores and they had to mail one to him here at my Mom's address. They are saying it will either be in on Wednesday or Friday so we will have to wait for it to come in. I hope it comes in on Wednesday so we can hit the road again on Friday, but I also hope it gets here on Friday so that I will have an extra day to get to feeling better. So when we leave kinda depends on the mail.

That is all for now. Dinner is almost ready and then I am headed to bed.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Heading out from Amarillo, J got us to Holbrook,AZ where I took over. I was cruising along listening to Fox News on Sirius when I heard them say that there was snow in SoCal and that I-15 was shut down both directions into LA. WTF?? I decided to make a stop in Ludlow about 50 miles east of Barstow on I-40 to check the weather and the state website. I figured if it was shut down, all the trucks that didn't know and all the trucks coming from Vegas would be hitting the truck stops in Barstow and I wouldn't be able to find a place to park. After checking I found out that it was indeed shut down. J woke up about this time and we went into the Ludlow Cafe and grabbed a bite to eat. Pretty darn good chili cheese burgers, but I am paying for it today. LOL While we were in there we were talking to a retired couple that had just bought a used motorhome and were living in it. She had lost her job at a real estate office and he either quit or was laid off from Lowe's. Anyway, they put the house up for sale, downsized everything and were just starting their adventure in the RV. They were a really nice couple and we really enjoyed talking to them for a while.

Finally we headed back to the truck and checked online again and found out that I-15 was back open so off we go! We were dropping the load we had at a drop lot in Ontario, CA but wanted to get there asap so that we could get another load that would get us back to Dallas. We found the place and in the process we got another load. We were to pick up another trailer, at the same place we were dropping ours, and deliver it to the same location that ours was going, just a day earlier. Didn't pay squat, but it gives us an empty trailer to get loaded to get out of here. It didn't deliver until 0500 this morning, so last night we dropped ours there, headed to the TA for a shower and dinner and the spent the night there. I got up bright and early this morning so that I could go back and grab the trailer for this drop and get here by 0500 local. We were going to just spend the night there at the drop lot last night, but it is litterally a dirt lot inbetween two cattle lots. I think they are dairy cows, but either way, that place stunk to the high heavens! OMG it smelled like shit, and I mean litterally!! We decided that the TA was the better alternative and we don't like that TA.

So here I sit waiting for them to unload me and hoping that John is looking for us a load that will get us back. I hope he can find something close that I can head directly to so that we can get on the road. Keep your fingers crossed for us!!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008


HOLY MOLY is is windy outside today! This morning I woke up at the OK/AR border on I-40 and that is where my day began. J told me is had been windy all night and there was no change once I started driving. I was all over the road today. People probably thought I was drunk. Well, except that every other 18-wheeler out on the road was driving the same way. Someone once told me they figured we didn't get blown around as much as cars since we were so big and heavy. The exact opposite is true. A truck this big has so much more area for the wind to hit. We are roughly 75 feet long and over 13 feet tall. We are a rolling flat billboard and when the wind hits it, POOF! Imagine two people holding a sheet at both ends and holding it vertically in front of a fan. See how the fan hits it and pushes it out. That is a semi an the effect the wind has on it. It blows you all around. I a litterally worn out after holding on to the steering wheel for dear life all day.

Today I only made it 428 miles and called it a day here in Amarillo. I had the time to get the 500 I wanted, but I was just so freaking tired. I pulled into the Petro here in Amarillo at about 1330 and hit the sack until 1500 which is when I had the alarm set to wake J up. I also have a headache that I can't get rid of but the nap helped. We got up and went inside to eat and let me tell you, it was cold outside! I had stopped at the rest area on I-40 between Amarillo and the OK state line to take Smokey out. It showed it was 69 degrees outside and I didn't even have a jacket on. The wind had been coming straight out of the south, When I got back in the truck and drove the last 60 miles into Amarillo it changed and started coming out of the north. A cold front definitely blew through. The temperature guage is now showing 27. And yes, I typed that right, 27. It is cold ladies and gentlemen!

Anyway, we grabbed something to eat, took Smokey for a walk and then hit the road again. We have just a little over 1100 miles to go. I figure we will be there tomorrow afternoon and them hopefully get a load tomorrow night or on Tuesday morning to get us back for Christmas. We shall see....

Saturday, December 13, 2008


After getting unloaded at Dole up in Bessemer City,NC on Thursday morning, I drove around to the shipping side of the facility and got checked in. It was about 1000 hrs local and my appointment wasn't until 1300 but she went ahead and had me back up to a dock. Around 1330 we were finally loaded and ready to go. I checked the bills and sure enough, just like the qualcomm said we had two stops. The first one at 2100 hrs in Birmingham,AL and the last one at 0800 the next morning in Indianola,MS. I called in for our depart call and informed John that we would get there as fast as we could, but with the rain and the tight schedule to get 350 miles in 7 hours that we may be a little late. He called and they said not a problem, just get there when we could. At that point, I headed to bed.

Around 0230 J is waking me up letting me know it is my turn to drive. The only problem is that we were STILL in Birmingham. C&S Allied (AKA Birmingham Consolidated) is a cluster of a place to deliver at. When he gets there, he finds out that we have to pay $290 for the lumper service. WTF??? He finally gets it squared away that we will be reimbursed for that, cuts them a check, and he gets back to a dock. They come get his paperwork and say that they will bring it back out when they are done. He sat there for about 2 hours and could feel them moving the product out of the truck periodically so he knew they were still working. Of course at this place once they get it off the truck, they break it down to smaller pallets to be distributed to the stores. So another 2 hours goes by and he doesn't feel anything. During this time he is thinking they are breaking the pallets down. Finally, after being there for about 4 hours, he goes in to find an EMPTY warehouse. He sees two guys standing around by the timeclock waiting to clock in and asks where everyone is, like the ones that were unloading our truck. They tell him that those guys already went home. After a few choice words to them about how the place is run, of which they laugh and agree, he finds out that our paperwork is back at the front and to pick it up around there. He pulls around, gets it, gave them and earfull I am sure, then drives back around back to wake me up and take Smokey for a walk.

Once up, I get ready and hit the road. Not happy with the situation because now I have 5 hours to go 250 miles. Not gonna happen if I make even one stop. And of course I have to get off the interstate and traverse the backroads of Mississippi to get to destination. I let dispatch know, and all in all, I did fairly well. I was only 45 minutes late, but they were advised of it, so it was all cool. When I checked in at the gate, there was an older black woman working the gate who was just a sweetheart. She couldn't believe "a little 'ol thing like me" was driving a truck. She was absolutely delightful. After we talked for a few minutes and she got my information, she told me where to head. I get backed in to the dock and head in with my paperwork. They tell me to see the man in the red jacket behind me about a lumper. I do and he informs me that it will be $187 for them to unload. Again, I am like, WTF is with these expensive lumpers. But everyone at this location was extremely nice, so I just cut the check because I knew we would get it back. I was there for about three hours when they finally got me unloaded.

When I got done, the first thing I did was to send off my depart. I wanted them to know right away that I was empty so that while I was shutting the doors and getting ready to leave they would have time to send me our next load. During this time, J got up and we sat there for a few minutes waiting. I decided to send in a message and ask if I had time to head towards a shower. A few minutes later they responed that we had time. The closest place was about 55 miles back at a Pilot which was on I-55. I sent a message that we would be heading to that Pilot that is in Winona,MS and to let us know when we got a load.

We found a good place to park when we got there and I like that. I got out and took Smokey for a walk then got in and got our stuff ready so we could go grab a shower. We first decided to eat because we were hungry, so we grabbed something from the only fast food they had there, Taco Hell. UGH! Not my favorite, but oh well. After the shower we headed back to the truck and still no load. He said that he was working on something out of TN but there was too much time on it. After getting with sales, he found out we could drop it early, so he went ahead and assigned us the load. At this time it was around 1500 hours. And we had until 1500 hrs today to pick it up and only 350 miles to get to the pickup in Murfreesboro,TN. Since it was mid afternoon, we knew that if we took off that we wouldn't find a place to park later on, so we decided to just hang out there for the night and then I would take off in the morning. We stayed up for a while watching the trucks back in and out, but after a while, I had to head to bed. 0230 that morning when J woke me up was a LONG time ago and I was worn out. I hit the sack and J stayed up till around 0100 or so trying to stay on his schedule.

My alarm went off at 0300 of the intention of me being on the road by 0400. I hit the snooze until 0345. Oops! I guess I was more tired than I thought. I finally drug my ass out of bed and farted around and made it out of there around 0500. I pulled into the shipper at about 1315 hours. As I was walking in a Stevens Transport was walking in. We were talking and he said the plant was running 24 hours behind. He was there the day before and was told to come back today. Great, I thought to myself. I get in there and I luck out. They only have two loads ready and mine is one of them. YES!!! Another Prime came in behind me and I saw him drop his empty and pick up a loaded so the other load must have been his. After a quick scale at the Pilot we hit the road. Now I am hauling 42K of yogurt across the country.

We figure we will drop this there in Carson on Monday afternoon and then hopefully get a load back out that night or first thing on Tuesday morning. We have time at home scheduled on the 18th so when we drop this on Monday the 15th, they should get us a load headed back to Dallas. Planning on spending the first part of our time off with the kids then heading to Lubbock to see my family and make the rounds there.

Happy Holiday's everyone and watch all those crazy travelers that are out there on the roads!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Bessemer City,NC

Well, we finally made it here. But boy did we go through some nasty weather to get here! Yesterday morning I got up and started driving in Terrell,TX. It was nothing but rain ALL the way in from there. There was a nasty storm on the radar that we were following on the tail end of. UGH!

We got a preplan before we got here and it happens that we are loading at the Dole that we are dropping off at here in NC. We got in around 0230 and I am currently sitting in a dock getting unloaded. Once I finish up here, I will head around to the other side of the building to where shipping is and go check in. With any luck, they will have what I need and I can get loaded early. But I'm not holding my breath. LOL. My appointment is at 1000 hrs local time so that is only an hour and 15 minutes from now so it won't be a big deal if I have to wait. This load is a short 650 miles or so and will take us down to Indianola,MS. It doesn't deliver until tomorrow morning sometime so we will have plenty of time. I wish it was a longer run, but it pays ok. Not great, but decent. With us having the truck in the shop last week and being delayed another day by that load getting pushed back we only had one run on the paycheck so we need a few more this week.

Heffard, I forgot to answer your question. For the most part, we usually don't have to wait very long. Sometimes we will have a delivery in the late afternoon and then we will have a load that picks up the next morning but usually we have something right away. Having to wait on that load in Louisville and again down in Yuma was the exception to the rule. Of course they had to happen within a week of each other. I am hoping this isn't a sign of things to come. I know the economy is slowing down, and I have heard the news actually used the dreaded "recession" word stating we were finally actually IN one as opposed to the talks that we could be HEADED for one. I guess we will just have to play it by ear and see what happens. I think a lot also has to do with geography. I know another team here with Prime who have been running their asses off with almost no down time. They just happen to be in the right place at the right time. Now, if I could get my FM to get me into the freight lanes they are running, then we would be in business. Also, making money is not at the top of our list as it is for some people. Wait, that didn't sound right. Of course it is important, but we don't have a house so we don't have a mortgage to pay every month or utilities. We have no credit cards at all. We basically have our suburban, insurance, cell phones, J's child support and well, that is basically it. So if we have a short week, it doesn't effect us like it does some people who have the bills that we don't. We have worked hard to get out of debt and living in the truck has done that for us. So now, when the money rolls in, we just stash it away. And when we have a slow week or two, it is ok, because we have the money set aside. However, I can see how others who are in the financial position we used to be in, could be having a hard time with the way things are right now. It is tough everywhere.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Van Horn,TX

Boy, yesterday was a long day! Around 1100 we got a load assignment to pick up at 1300 there at Dole. The only good thing about it was that J didn't drive on Monday so he was able to pick up the load with a complete 70 hours. And since I didn't drive on my shift yesterday, I was able to get a restart also. So we are both starting this load with a fresh set of 70 hours to burn through. That should take us through the 18th when we are due home for Christmas.

Around 1230 local time yesterday J heads over to Dole and gets checked in. They tell him he will be loading around back. Okay... Head out the front gate and go find the back gate. Pull in, get scaled and they tell us our load isn't ready and to pull over by the stack of pallets and wait. Since we had a 1300 appointment we figured it would be a fairly short wait and they were just getting the rest of the product ready. They finally call us up to a dock at 1700 hrs. We get done, go scale to pick up the paperwork and they tell us to come back in that they need to put 2 more pallets on. Sheesh. Ok, flip around, go back in, get two more pallets. FINALLY make it out to the gate and to the Love's to scale and it is almost 2100 hrs. That is crazy! And for a 1300 hrs appointment. J heads out and makes it to Tucson,AZ where he stops for the night.

I get up this morning and head out around 0430. I only made it about 20 miles down the roadf before it started raining. Then I hit Lordsburg,NM where it started snowing. Then it started raining again. And finally as I pull into Van Horn,TX to switch drivers, it is snowing on me again! This is south Texas people! What the hell is with the snow?!?!? We go inside and take a shower and grab something to eat and when we come back out, the snow is actually stickin. We have ice on our mirrors and or front windows are only clear where the wipers are working, but even the wipers are covered with snow. I just don't know what to make of this. I realize this is winter, and I expect the snow in the midwest or up north, but not down here in south Texas and south New Mexico where it is like 8 miles from the Mexico Border. Mexico is supposed to be sunny!

Ok, enough of my rant about the snow. We are only about 6 miles from the I-10 and I-20 split and we will be taking I-20. According to the weather that should be a fairly clear route and the majority of the snow and rain is on I-10. Hopefully we will push out of this in the next hour or so. I know I have a heck of a time sleeping when the weather is bad. That goes back to my control issues. :) I know J is about ready to tie me up and stick me in a gunny sack and put me in the trailer where he doesn't have to deal with my "issues", but he won't. For some odd reason, he loves me and puts up with me.

Monday, December 8, 2008


We had a nice uneventful drive into Fullerton,CA. We stopped in Holbrook and switche drivers on Saturday afernoon and drove up the road just a bit into Winslow and grabbed a bite to eat. I am not sure of the exit there, but there is a Flying J on the south side of the interstate. If you go to the north side there is a little mexican food restaurant that you will miss if you aren't looking for it. It is on the northwest corner by the RV park. Across the street on the northeast corner there is a big empty lot that is for truck parking. If you get by that way and like mexican food, you should try this little place. It was really good. And we were the only truck parked in that huge lot.

Still having some time on our hands J got us into Barstow around 0200 (Saturday night/Sunday morning our time)where we called it a night. We didn't deliver until 1130 Sunday morning local so we got some good non moving sleep. We managed to get ourselves out of bed around 0800 our time and headed in to grab a shower and breakfast. We finally headed out around 1030 our time (0830 local) to make the short 100 mile drive in to Kraft. I like delivering on a Sunday morning in the LA area. Traffic is not bad at all. We made a short pit stop at the TA in Ontario for me to go to the restroom and then made it to Kraft about 45 minutes early. They let me in a door right away as I was the only truck they were expecting that morning. I got unloaded quickly and sent my depart before I pulled away from the dock in the hopes that I would have my next load assignment before I left. Didn't hear anything back for a few so I sent a message asking if I had something coming or if I needed to find a place to park. They told me to head to Yuma,AZ and they would load me out of there, so off I go!

Another team that we know was currently sitting in Yuma waiting on their appointment so we were hoping that we would make it there before there appointment time. Luckily we made it about 1830 local and their appointment wasn't until 2000 local. We met up at the Walmart there and got to have dinner with them and visit for a while. It is always nice to catch up with friends because out on the road, you may talk on the phone to them once in a while, but you may go months without crossing paths. I think the last time we saw them was some time in August. they told us to follow them back to Dole and they would show us where an empty lot was across the street so we could park there overnight. See, Prime told us to head to Yuma to get a load, but we still didn't have a load yet and they told us it would be sometime Monday, so we were in need of a place to park. And there is only one truckstop here and there was NO place to park at all. We followed them back and when they turned right they told us to turn left. Nope, not the right place. So we have to go back down the forad a few miles to find a place to turn around. As we are headed back they said they called and said they gate guard said we could park on a lot by the gate so we headed back and went in the main entrance and proceeded to where the guard pointed us to. I had put in a full day at this point so J and I quickly called it a night and headed to bed.

Hoping we may get a load this morning, I set my alarm for 0700. I got up and got dressed and then got J up. Our first order of business was a bathroom so we headed up to the Love's. Took care of business and found that some of the trucks had cleared out so we had some open spots to choose from. I backed into a spot and figured we would wait here since we have a bathroom! It is not 1030 and we still don't have a load. I sent a message to our FM making sure he knew that weekend dispatch sent us to Yuma. He said he knew and that freight was slow but he is hoping he can get us something out of here today. Sheesh! I hope he can too! I am looking around and there are probably at least 10 Prime trucks parked here. I talked to the Prime parked right next to me and they were told the same thing. They don't have a load yet either but they were told to head down here. Looks like a lot of people waiting. I guess we will just have to play the waiting game then....

Friday, December 5, 2008


After a good nights sleep on Wednesday night, we got up and headed back to the Freightliner shop to pick up the trailer and head to our pick up there in Louisville,KY. I got there a little early and there were already 2 Prime trucks there. I go in to check-in and they ask me if my pickup number ended in 01. Sure enough it did and I was the Prime truck they were waiting on. The two other trucks that were there had appointments, but like us yesterday, they told them that they couldn't load them until the next morning because they were running behind. I explained to the two drivers that it also happened to me the day before and I had to wait overnight for the load I was there to pick-up. I got backed into a dock with no problems and got loaded fairly quickly. I was out of there by about 1000 I think and it was an 0830 appt, so not too bad.
While I was getting loaded I was looking for a place to scale but the only one I could find was about 20 miles the opposite direction. When I picked up the paperwork it showed I was only hauling 29,919 so I figured I would head out the direction I needed to go and stop at the first scale that direction. I checked the map and it didn't show any DOT scales so I was safe. I stopped at a Pilot in Levenworth,IN and sure enough I was good on weight. Total was just a little over 69,000. Grabbed some lunch and a new GPS while we were there. Maggie, our Magellan, is freaking out on us. I think being on continuously for close to two years is taking it's toll on her. They only had Garmin's so we got one and figured we would try it. Some things we like and others we don't. But I suppose it is just because we were used to Maggie. We will get the hang of it though. And she has been appropriately named Gabs. :)

I stopped right outside of St Louis and that is where J took over driving. When I was double checking our appointment time at our destination I found something I liked. Because they had to reschedule our pick-up, they also had to reschedule the delivery. I guess all of the delivery appointment times were take so we ended up with an extra day, a whole 27 hours extra on this load. Sweet! We needed to get through Springfield to get some stuff taken care of so J just drove there and parked for the night. We got up this morning and hit the Friday meetings they have, then grabbed a shower, talked to our FM, picked up my TWIC card (J's isn't in yet), got our 08 tax stuff from our accountant, got the truck washed and gave Smokey a bath. Finally around 1430 we were ready and hit the road.

I drove a little later than usual, until around 1830, so that J could get in a nap since we were both up at 0700 this morning. When I stopped just west of Tulsa we only have about 1400 miles till destination which is Fullerton,CA. We will make it into Barstow,CA tomorrow night and then I will drive the rest of the way in on Sunday. Our appointment time is at 11oo which is at 1300 our time, so we will get to sleep in!

I am hoping that we will be able to get a load out on Sunday that will deliver before payroll cutoff on Tuesday, but I kinda doubt it. We will just wait and see what happens.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


We made our top secret delivery yesterday and got a preplan for this morning at 0800. Since we delivered yesterday before noon we decided to head towards this pick up and get a hotel overnight. We got a hotel in Indianapolis and that only left us a short 120 mile drive this morning. We stayed at a COMPLETE dive. Deadbolt didn't work, bathroom exhaust fan was as loud as a fire alarm and when I went to take a shower, there was no hot water. We had to call maintenance to come and replace the handle on the tub. The carpet looked to be at least 30 years old and the upholstered chair in the room needed re-upholstered about the time the carpet was put in. The heat wasn't on in the room and it took a good three hours to get the room warm. UGH! But, we had a trailer and they had truck and trailer parking so that was our choice if we wanted out of the truck for the night. It is Budget Inn East off of I-70 and Shadeland in Indianapolis in case anyone happens to need a hotel. But I wouldn't recommend it!

On a positive note, there was a nicer hotel next door with a restaurant (bar/grill) in it that we walked over to for dinner. I will definitely recommend that place. It was called Damon's. I had the NY Strip and J had the ribs and salmon combo. Absolutely delicious. It was a $54 meal, but well worth it. Good size portions also.

So after a great meal and a Bud Light we headed back to the hotel and I headed to bed. J wanted to stay on his sleep schedule so he was a doll and headed to the laundry room and did laundry. I have to admit though, he is usually the one who does laundry. I have nothing against laundry, it just seems that when we stop and have time to do it is during my time to sleep. After that he headed to bed and then we were up bright and early at 0330 our time (0430 local) to be on the road and headed to Louisville,KY and to the shipper at 0800.

As I was about to the shipper I took a wrong turn and got on I-64 the wrong way. I called John and let him know that I was going to be a few minutes late when he informs me that he just got off the phone with sales and they found out that this load will not be ready until tomorrow at 0800. So that means that we dropped our last load around noon on the 2nd and can't pick up this load until 0800 on the 4th. Hmmm Well we need some work done on the truck so I called Freightliner here in Louisville and they were able to get us in the shop. The front drive axle pinon seal is leaking and the right front shock is out. They said they they should have us done late this evening but we didn't want to wait all day there in the truck. So we called a taxi and had them take us and Smokey down the road to the Motel 6 where we are currently at. We just ordered a pizza and salads from Domino's because there is nothing within walking distance and it is just plain cold outside.

So here we sit for the second night in a hotel room. They are supposed to call us when the truck is ready and one of us will grab a taxi back down there and pick it up then bobtail back to the Motel. They open at 0700 in the morning so we can go back down there and grab the trailer when they open and still have time to get to our appointment on time.

That is what we are up to. More to come as the adventures continue!

Monday, December 1, 2008


Last night after we made it to the Produce Market I headed to bed to get a little sleep. J stayed up until they came in and unloaded us and then he woke me up so I could help him get out of there. Luckily we made it out of there with no problems, thanks to taking the wrong turn last time we were there so we knew exactly where to go this time!

Now our problem was goig to be finding a place to park at 0100 in the morning in the Boston area. Figuring it would be near impossible, we headed back to I-90 to try the first Service Plaza we came to in Natick. Neither of us could believe it when we pulled in and there were only 2 trucks parked there. Thanking the good Lord for our good fortune, we parked and headed in to go to the restroom and hopefully get something to eat. We lucked out and McDonalds was still open so we grabbed a quick bite to eat and headed to the truck for some well deserved rest after traversing the tiny roads of Chelsea.

We decided we could sleep in since we didn't have to pick up our next load until sometime between 1300-1600 so off to bed we went. We must have been worn out because I woke up at 1145! Dang I was tired but I had to get J up so we could get ready and get to our pick up on time. After a quick restroom stop inside the Service Plaza and a quick bite of lunch we were off.

We found our pickup fairly easily but DANG, another tiny little town that wasn't built for semi trucks. We were able to get right in to get loaded and ended up with only 6110 lbs! That is my kind of load! Gonna get great fuel mileage on this one. Unfortunately it is a high value load and I can't tell you where I am going but we should be there tomorrow when I post again and I will let you know how everything went.

So that is all for now. :)

Sunday, November 30, 2008


New England Produce Market.....Oh how I dislike thee......... I really truly dislike this place. It is hard to get to, tiny roads, roads that have potholes in it the size of the Grand Canyon and what seems like near impossible turns. Ok, the turns aren't that bad, but there are phone poles or electric poles on every freaking corner. And if you miss the turn like we did tonight, holy cow! Try getting turned back around. We have been here before, but it is raining and already dark so we couldn't see the sign. We ended up following Hwy 99 south and got turned around and came back north on it but it was an even harder right turn coming from that direction. But we finally made it! Now the bad news. We are about 6 hours early and they aren't open yet so after paying $25 at the gate for the priviledge of entering this decrepit facility, we are stuck here. I had sent in a message asking about my delivery time which showed 2359 hours and asked if that meant midnight or anytime today and they told me I could deliver any time today before midnight. So going off of that, we headed on in fighting with the holiday travelers headed home, with the intention of delivering this and getting a hotel for the night since we don't pick up our next load until tomorrow between 1300-1600 hours a short 42 miles away in Clinton,MA. That plan is shot to hell so I guess when we get unloaded here we will head to a service plaza or rest area and sit until tomorrow.

On a brighter note, when we came through Chicago we stopped at the Lake Forest Oasis and met Justin and his new girlfriend there. Him and Stephanie broke up. That is a long story.... But it was nice to get to see him and she seems like a really nice girl. Of course I told him we would be there at 0915 and he didn't show up until almost 1100. ARGH!!! Next time I am going to tell him to be there two hours before we will actually be there so that we don't have to wait. :) Maybe then he will make it on time.

Friday, November 28, 2008


Wednesday morning we woke up bright and early to drive the last 65 miles to our first pick up in Cashmere,WA. We took Hwy 97 north out of Ellensburg,WA to get there. This was our first time up in this area and we hadn't been on Hwy 97 before. It was a beautiful drive. A bit windy with curves and there was some ice on the road from the rain the night before. We mae it to our first stop about 10 minutes late but it wasn't a big deal. It was one of those first come first loaded places. There were two trucks in the only two docks and only one in line ahead of us. We only had to wait about 10 minutes before the first two were done and the truck in front of us and ourselves were backing up to the dock. It is a very small town and you have to drive the wrong way up a street to back into the dock crossing the street right in front of the warehouse. Seems the locals are used to it during their mornig commute to the coffee shop or work and they didn't seem to mind. Didn't even get a honk or a finger. :) After getting docked I headed inside since it was a driver count load. It wasn't too hard to count the one pallet we were picking up at this stop and within an hour of pulling up to the place, I was on the road again.

Our next stop was up in Orondo,WA which was only about 20 miles away. We called to see if they could load us early since we were ahead of schedule and they said they weren't sure but to come on up because they had plenty of parking where we could wait. It was a beautiful drive up there also along the bank of the Columbia River. Checked in about 2 hours early and within an hour they were calling me to dock. Sweet! This is a funny place to load at because if you get dock 2 it is in between two building and there is a roof between the two buildings so it is like driving through a building to get to the dock. You can bet I was careful not to hit anything when I pulled in! I got out and opened the doors and backed up then grabbed my gloves to remove the load locks from the first pallet. They had my load sitting outside ready to go so within a matter of about 10 minutes I had my 13 pallets from this place and was ready to go again. Lock up, grab the paperwork and I am off to my final stop before heading to Chelsea,MA.

Our third stop was in Wenatchee,WA and it was about 17 miles back down Hwy 97. I got the directions and it said to turn at the truckstop once I got on Alt Hwy 97 North. So I pulled in to the truckstop and called the shipper to see if they could load me early because now I am 3 hours early for them. I love being early! The nice lady said to come on over and check in and if our product was there, they would go ahead and get us in line to get loaded. I head over and check in and this is where the problems start. She tells me that the order number I have is not good. It is for a load going to NY. Hmmm Ok, head out to the truck to check the number on the Qualcomm thinking maybe we inverted some numbers when we wrote down the info for the load. Nope, this is the correct number they sent me. Head back in and let her know that the number I gave her is the one they sent me. While I am talking to her I am talking to Nick (Our FM John was out for the day and Nick was covering) and he said he would get with sales on it. I tell him to call me back because I am in the office. About 20 minutes go by and I call back and he tells me that sales should be calling them because that is right. He said we are supposed to take that order to MA and from the produce market there which is a distribution center it will then be taken to NY. OK. So I go back to the window and tell the lady this info. She in turn talks to another lady who checks on it. The other lady comes and tells me that it is wrong. The product for the order I am giving her is going to NY but it is loading at a different facility IN NY. She says they don't even have that order there. Yes, this is turning into a cluster! Call Nick back and relay that info to him. Tell him that product is in NY not here and that the number is wrong. Should I head out, since they insist I don't have a load there, or wait? He says to wait. Ok, about an hour later he sends a message that says it is a good number and they have talked to a Melissa at the location I am at and to talk to her because it is good and we should get loaded. Back I go to the office to tell them this info and ask for a Melissa. She isn't in that office but she is local in another building so they give me her phone number. I call Melissa and try to figure out what is going on. She informs me that order 398118 is indeed a good load and she doesn't know why I am having a problem or why the girls at the office I am at are telling me it is a bad load. Ding! Ding! Ding! It finally clicks. Someone made a typo entering the information into the work assignment. I show order 398113 not 398118. And when I talked to Nick he was also showing the same one I had. But sales, who get the loads, probably have the hardcopy with the correct number so they knew it was the right load, but they didn't know I had the wrong order number. WHEW!! Get that straightened out and I am FINALLY on the list to be loaded. Originally I was 3 hours early for my 1500 appt. Now I am 10 minutes early for it after wasting almost 3 hours getting this straightened out. They say they will call us when we are up. In the mean time, J has gotten up and I stay up another hour and a half and then I head to bed. It was around 1830 our time and 1630 local time. They finally call J to come inside at 2100 our time and he still doesn't get loaded and out of there until 2315. Turns out that our product was on the way but hadn't arrived. Why on earth they had him back in and then left him standing inside the cooler for 45 minutes is beyond me. He would have still been standing there if he hadn't got cold enough to go into the office and hot enough to raise some hell. The least they could have done was tell him before he went in the cooler that they were waiting on it to arrive and still had to load a few trucks first. He could have waited in the truck.

ANYWAY, 2315 he hits the road and makes it a whopping 45 miles before he is stopped by the fog. Fog was super thick and he couldn't see anything. He headed to bed and I got up Thursday morning around 0500 and headed out. It was still really heavy fog and it took me 4 hours to get the 136 miles into Spokane,WA. Of course when I woke up the fog was heavy, but the roads were icy and come daylight it started to snow. I stopped at the Petro in Spokane,WA for about 2 hours until things warmed up some and headed on out. I made it across Idaho and stopped at x33 in Montana at the St Regis Travel Plaza. I decided to call it a day there. I have only made it about 270 miles but it had taken me close to 9 hours to make it that far. There is a casino next door to the travel plaza that has a restaurant called Jasper's. They had a complete Thanksgiving dinner for 9.99 and it was pretty darn good. Turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, corn, sweet potatoes, rolls, salad AND pumpkin pie. What more could you ask for at that price? It was yummy and we were on the road again.

I had hoped to make it into Bozeman,MT on Thursday so we could have dinner there. That is the same town that we were in last year for Thanksgiving when we were with Schneider and broken down. I will never forget the nice people who invited us into their home that day. That is another story, but you can look back at my blog for last Thanksgiving and the whole story is there. It was really cool.

So J takes over driving and I head off to bed. He makes about 450 miles and stops for the night, well, about 2 hours anyway, in Billings,MT before he wakes me up at 0400. Once again I am up and off. I made it 400 miles today to Mandan,SD where I stopped about an hour and a half early at 1330 so we could grab a shower and grab Subway. We only have about 1800 miles to go and today is just Friday afternoon. This load delivers anytime on Sunday before midnight, or so the work assignment says, so we aren't in a super huge rush. And Montana takes FOREVER to drive across and there are a ton of mountain passes to get over. And when you are in 6th gear going abou 15 mph going up one, you don't make good time! So we are just enjoying this nice Holiday Weekend load and taking our time. We do plan on taking time off for Christmas, but with us recently taking time off for J to go hunting and then seeing Kevin up in Colorado Springs, we need to keep moving for a while. I hope everyone had a nice Thanksgiving weekend with family and friends, and if you were on the road, I hope you were able to talk to your family on the phone and at least stop long enough for a decent meal.

Be safe out there!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Back on the road! With the exception of Saturday night, we had a great time.

We got in to our friend Kevin's Friday afternoon and chilled out until he got home from work. Poor guy really messed himself up a little over a month ago when he wrecked a dirt bike on the street in front of his house. Someone should tell him that a 41 year old man should be more careful!!! So he has finally graduated to a cane after being laid up completely for several weeks and then having to use a walker the past few weeks. I was planning on cooking that night but he had already bought steaks for the grill so I let the men do their work outside and I handled the alfredo noodles and the ice tea. We had an awesome dinner and then just chilled out at his house. His girlfriend came over and we had a little too much of the adult beverages, but hey, we were off!

Saturday morning we got up and I made sausage gravy and biscuits for breakfast, which was delicious (I was worried I was going to lose my knack for cooking being on the road too long!) and then we headed out to catch a matinee. J and I have read the Twilight series so we really wanted to see the movie. We really enjoyed it. Of course it was like the book, in the sense that the beginning of the movie was a little slow just like the book, but it sped up after that. I can't wait for the next one to come out. I have heard them talking on the radio that they have the go ahead for the next two books to be made into movies. YES!!

Anyway, after the movie we headed home and I cooked again. Breaded pork chops, real mashed potatoes and green beans. OMG it was so good! My mouth is watering just thinking about it. We were chill that night and watched The Bucket List and had some cookies and milk for dessert. My stomach was starting to get upset so I headed to bed. Then it happened. I started throwing up. I was up 8 times between around 2300 and 0630. I have no idea what it was. All three of us had the exact same thing to eat and drink Friday evening and during the day and evening on Saturday. It was horrible. I finally got to sleep around 0700 and made it up around 1300. That evening I was able to eat a grilled cheese and that was it. I was worried about heading back out on Monday morning because I just wasn't sure how I was going to feel and if I was going to need to be near a bathroom. Luckily Monday morning I felt better and we decided to head back out. After J being out of the truck for a week and a half and me solo for the week and taking a couple days off at the end, we really needed to head back out and start making some money.

J headed out to start the truck and we already had a load waiting for us. We picked up at the Denver yard and delivered to Walmart here in Grandview,WA. We cut it close on time. To the point of when I got into the office with the paperwork to check in I had about 5 minutes to spare. I had J let me out to check in while he went and docked the trailer. If I had waited they probably would have marked us as late. And no matter how late you are to Walmart, whether it is a minute or an hour, if you are late, you get put to the back of the line and they work you in when they can. So we were lucky this time.

As I was driving this morning we got a preplan sent to us. We are picking up in the morning in Cashmere,WA at 0800 and delivering on the 30th in Chelsea,MA. Don't have a time on the delivery yet though. I have a feeling they are going to send us to the Chelsea Produce Market. I hate that place. UGH!! It is super tight in there and busy, busy, busy! I guess I will just hope for the best. Once we depart Walmart, whenever they get through with us, they will send us the next load info.

Now all we have to decide is where we are going to have Thanksgiving dinner at. Hmmm So many choices in several different states!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Dad and I finally made it to Denver. Yesterday afternoon around 1230 we got a message that our trailer was on the yard there in Springfield. We checked out of the hotel and headed over to pick it up and head out. We got there and we looked all over and couldn't find it. Finally after checking in the wash bay I found the trailer in the shop. The previous driver was getting messages on the Qualcomm that the trailer was disconnected, even though it wasn't, so they were checking the electrical lines. We got that straightened up and around 1500 we headed out.

We drove us Hwy 13 to get us to Hwy 71 and from there headed north into Kansas City but we first stopped at the Flying J on 71 for a quick sandwich and a restroom stop. Hitting the road again we hit 435 and headed around west to hook up with I-70. We hit the Kansas side and made it to a rest area on the west side of Topeka where we called it a night. I had only gone about 250 miles but I was worn out being off of my normal schedule. We called it a night there and got up this morning around 0500 and were on the road by 0600 to make it into Denver. After several pit stops we stopped in Colby for a quick lunch and were on the road again. It is nice having a load with plenty of time on it and being able to stop when we want for as long as we want! But I was excited to meet back up with J in Denver. I sure have missed him!! We pulled into the Denver yard around 1730 or so and about an hour later J met us there. After hungs and kisses all around we headed out to find a hotel for the night.

After we found a hotel, Motel 6 because we are cheap (haha), we went and grabbed some dinner and then headed to Walmart to pick up a duffle bag for my Dad. It seems he has accumulated more stuff while out on the road with me! Frome there we headed back to the hotel where I could blog and we are headed to bed. We will get up in the morning early enough to get my Dad directions back to the airport and then we are stuck here until Friday morning at 0600 when this load delivers. After that we are headed down to Colorado Springs to see a friend and then we will head back out on the road on Monday morning.

It has been a great week with my Dad and I am sorry to see it end. But I know he is ready to get back home and I am happy to have my baby back on the truck with me!

Monday, November 17, 2008


Well, here we are again. This morning we were available at 0800 so I woke up and called to see if we had a load. My FM told me to check with Drivers Lineup so after getting the direct number from him I gave them a call. It looks like there were over 60 drivers on the yard waiting for a load over the weekend. Today was Monday morning and they were still trying to get the last 8-10 drivers from Saturday out so they still had the drivers from Sunday to work through before they could get to me. I took a chance and decided to to ahead and check out of the hotel on the off chance they may get to me.

We headed to the yard from the hotel and made a quick stop at Waffle House for lunch. When we got to the yard around 1300 I checked in and I had made it up to #22 on the list. Sweet! I was making progress. We chilled out in the truck and finally went to grab some dinner around 1800. At 1900 I checked in and TaDa! They had a load for me! The bad news is that it won't be here at the yard for me to pick up until sometime early tomorrow afternoon. The good news is that it delivers to Denver, where I need to get to, and it doesn't deliver until Friday. So even though I need to be there Wednesday night so my Dad can catch his flight on Thursday morning, we won't be rushed. Now that we know for sure we have a load, we have headed back to the hotel to get a good nights sleep. No sense in hanging out for another 18 hours or longer in the truck when we can be good and comfortable in a hotel.

This has been a really good week though so far on a personal level. I have gotten to spend some really good quality time with my Dad and we have had some great talks. It is just important that he knows that I am always there for him and that whatever decisions he makes in life, I will support him. I only want him to be happy and I love him very much. LOVE YOU DAD!!

Sunday, November 16, 2008


We made it back to Texas around 1930 hours on Wednesday night so J was able to make his flight out of Amarillo on Thursday to go hunting. I talked to him today and he hasn't got anything yet but has seen quite a few does and bucks. The scope was mounted a little crooked on his rifle so once he got that fixed they went and got it sighted in right so he should have good luck in the next few days.

I picked my dad up on Friday morning in Lubbock ready to have a fun week together. First order of business was to go to Plainview,TX to pick up an empty. I get there and could only find one empty. I get hooked up to it and realize there is damage to the left front and there was no way I could load this trailer. After calling road assist and reporting the damage to Safety they have me take that trailer BACK to Lubbock to a Wabash dealer and drop it off. Get that done and head back to Plainview in hopes that they now have another empty. Luck was with us and they had one so we hooked up and headed north. Of course the trailer was dirty so we had to stop in Amarillo at the Blue Beacon to get it washed out. By this time it is around 1930 hours and we decide to call it a day. The load we were assigned could be picked up anytime after 1500 on Friday and before 1330 on Saturday. Since we had till the next afternoon we decided to stop there for the night. My dad has a bad back (degenerative disk disease) so we got a really nice spot right up front since I have a handicapped placard for him. Guaranteed the closest I have ever been able to park to the main building of a truck stop. It was really nice when I had to go to the restroom around 0100!!

We got up around 0500 and headed out by about 0600 or so and headed to our pick up in Cactus,TX at the meat plant. We lucked out with a preloaded trailer! While we were in Lubbock before we left out, I had bought a pair of waterproof boots and they came in handy at this meat plant. Where I had to park the trailer had about 4 inches of standing water so I pulled out my new boots and decided to find out if they were indeed waterproof. Turns out they are! I got the trailer parked and then headed over to find my loaded one. Hooked up and then had to take Smokey for a walk. Unfortunately he wouldn't go to the bathroom because I spent more time pulling out those thorns out of his feet than we did actually walking around. I figured we would try some other place. We pulled around to the gate and I had a bad seal on the trailer that wouldn't stay sealed so I ended up waiting another 20 minutes while they had to go to another building to have the paperwork reprinted with the right seal number on it. It just makes sense to me that the guard shack would have a computer hooked up to the main building that they could just go in and make the change and print off a new copy for me. But of course that makes sense and would be too easy so of course they have to do it the hard way. :)

Finally got everything in order and pulled out and headed about 2 miles down to a scale. Ended up and were about 350 pounds heavy on the drives so I pulled up and they 2 guys working the scale said they would slide them for me. I thought that was nice but it was all part of the service. I watched them do the same for the truck in front of me. Regardless it was appreciated! Ok, done and we head out. I get to Amarillo and fill up with fuel and decide to go ahead and rescale on a CAT scale just to make sure. I was good on weight and we were FINALLY able to actually head out of Texas, something we had been trying to do since around 0900 the morning before!

The load we had doesn't have to be in Shelbyville,IN until Tuesday at 1800 so they were having me drop this load off in Springfield,MO since there was so much extra time on it. Since I was in no rush, we stopped in Chandler,OK (or is is Candler?.. Anyway....) and spent the night. They have a little place there in town called the Lincoln Motel and there is a little lot behind it that has room to park a semi. We stopped there around 1730 for the night. We ate at a little mexican food restaurant right across the street for dinner and it was pretty darn good. Came back to the room and watched the last part of Alvin & the Chipmunks, a little news and then hit the sack.

At 0500 we were up and on the road by 0600. Made a few stops along the way. Stopped at Big Cabin to get smokes since they are cheap and have no tax there at the Smoke Shop. Also stopped at the McDonalds in Vinita for a small breakfast and just because it is a cool place that goes over the highway. We finally made it in to Springfield at 1200 but had to wait about 30 minutes to get into the facility. One of the other drivers was telling me they only had one tire guy working and three bays open so that was holding things up. After getting in and dropping off our paperwork, we took the truck and trailer through the wash bay and headed to park the trailer. Got that done and bobtailed around and went inside and showed my Dad around and treated him to a cheeseburger and fries at the cafe.

As we were walking out and I was opening the door to get in my truck, the guy next door hollered at me and it turns out it was Launchpad and Jokester from I hadn't met either of them before so it was nice to visit for a few minutes with them. Luckily Launchpad recognized my truck number and then new for sure it was me when he saw Smokey! From there we made a quick stop at Walmart and then headed over here to the Campus Inn to spend the night. There are a lot of trucks at the yard waiting for a load and I knew we wouldn't get a load today. And since we have to have one to Denver I don't mind waiting. This week is really all about getting to spend time with my Dad. As long as I make enough to cover the truck payment, that is all I care about. So a nice easy week is perfect for me!

Not sure what we are going to do from here. Currently watching the Ford 400 at Homestead and then I think we are going to go have some dinner. He hasn't eaten at a Ruby Tuesday's before so it is either that or the BBQ place down on the corner that is supposed to be good. But a steak does sound really good and I think the best bet for that will be Ruby Tuesday's! Decisions, decisions.....

Saturday, November 8, 2008


YES!! We are out of the Ohio area. I must say that we have been really luck since we came on with Prime in April as far as not having to sit without a load. I guess it was just our time to have to sit.

I woke up yesterday morning and headed out around 0330. I picked up an empty trailer where we were supposed to pick up the day before and headed the truck towards Gary,IN. I got about 30 miles south of there and found a Gas City with truck parking so I parked to wait for a load. I got there around 1000 in the morning and we finally had a load come across around 1345. Head up to Oak Creek,WI which was 141 miles from where we were and be there by 1800 to pick up a load going to Laredo,TX. No problem. That gave me 4 hours to get there. Of course we hit rush hour traffic and at one point it litterally took us an hour to go 2.3 miles. I messaged in and told them we wouldn't make it by 1800. They said just get there by 1900 because that is when they close. Nothing like pressure. We were sweating because we thought it was a live load and we just didn't know if we could make it by even 1900 with the traffic the way it was. Well, it finally cleared out and we made it to the shipper at 1910 hours. When we checked in we were lucky enough to find out it was a pre-loaded trailer so all we had to do was drop and hook. Sweet! We found our trailer and were off to get scaled and hit the road.

I had also talked to our fill-in FM quite a few times during the day. He was trying hard to get us a good paying load so he pre-planned us on a load out of Laredo heading to CA. Our actual drop time is Monday morning in Laredo but they said we can drop it with the forwarder there after hours and early and just give the guard paperwork. So they now have us preplanned on a load heading out of Laredo on Sunday evening heading to Los Angeles,CA with a Tuesday drop at 1400. Problem is that we need to be in Amarillo by Thursday morning for J to catch his flight to go hunting. We were hoping to get into Lubbock on Wednesday afternoon but that isn't going to work. Best we can hope for is to get a load out of the LA,CA area and get into Amarillo late Wednesday night and drop it off to another team to take it to it's final destination. That being the case, it looks like my mom will meet us in Amarillo with our Suburban so J can take it to the airport and then my mom will ride back with me to Lubbock. We have to have the suburban at the airport there in Amarillo because that is where my dad is flying back into when he is finished riding with me for the week and he will need transportation back to Lubbock. Anyway, I think we have it figured out. I am just hoping that we get a load out of LA early so that we can get headed back.

Right now I have stopped in Gurdon,AR where we are going to grab a bite at the restaurant and then head back out. No big rush at this point. Only 660 miles to Laredo but we can't pick up the other load until after 1700 tomorrow. I figure we will get this load in around 0800-0900 in the morning so we will have some time to kill.

On a side note, have you seen that big storm that hit the Dakota's and Nebraska?? I talked to some friends of ours that drive for Schneider and they were stuck in a rest area up there in South Dakota from Wednesday night until this morning! And they only had some chips, cokes and cookies with them. They happened to pull into a rest area with another Schneider truck and the lady was a trainer and had some extra food and was nice enough to share some of what they had. She said she is DEFINITELY making sure they have an emergency food supply in case this happens again. We always have extra food, it is just so essential because you never know when something like this storm could happen! I am just really thankful that they made it to a rest area safely and that they made it through ok. I talked to her this morning and she said the first order of business was to get fuel then a shower then some REAL food to eat!

Thursday, November 6, 2008


If you look at a map you will see that we are only about 5o miles away from where we spent last night. We aren't really happy about it, but not much we can do. And it isn't our dispatchers fault so we can't complain about him either. So here is what happened....

Last night we dropped our load and they gave us another load that left out tonight. I think I told you about it. So last night we spent the night on the west side of Columbus,OH to kill some time. Got up today and had breakfast, a nice hot shower, went and got the trailer washed and headed to Hebron,OH for our pick-up. We got a message this morning that they would load us early, so we got there about 3 hours early. First thing when I get there I realize the place is packed with trailers so I park and walk around to find the Shipping office. I go in and give them my information and they say that our load has already left. Excuse me? What? They seemed a little confused and told me to go find the yard guy and find a place to park the empty then to come back in and we would figure out what is going on. Well, that took about 45 minutes because they had me to to a yard across the street and then we had to wait for them to move other trailers out of the way. Finally get the trailer dropped and head back over. I had called dispatch and told them what was going on and they gave me another order number to give them when I went back inside. When I got inside I gave them that number and they said that it had already left. To make a long story short, apparently it was a fairly small load and they combined it with another load that was going out and gave it to the first Prime driver (that had the other load) and just had him make two stops instead of his original one stop. Now, this wouldn't have been a problem, but the shipper failed to contact Prime and let them know what they had done. Therefore, Prime (and us) thought we still had a load. Prime didn't know that the other driver had both loads.

After getting that straightened out, and me actually trying to calm our fill-in FM down because he was pissed that we lost the load, we decided to head to the TA which was 3 exits down to wait for a new load and to grab some dinner. While we were in there he sent us a message back saying there was basically no freight in Ohio, Michigan or Indiana but for us to head to Gary,IN which is right on the IL border to wait for a load in the morning. We called and told them we would head that way around 0300 because now it it too late to try to find a parking spot. There aren't many truck stops in the Chicago area and that is basically right northwest of Gary,IN since it is right on the border. If we left now we would get in around midnight or a little after. So for now the plan is for me to get up and head out around 0300, after going back to the shipper that our load got cancelled from and picking up an empty trailer, and get in around 0900. This way the truck stops will have cleared out some and if we don't have a load by then, I have a better chance of finding a truck stop to park at and wait.

Not really happy, but you know what they say. Shit happens. Gotta roll with the flow some times! So, I'm rollin........

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


As you can see we apparently made it out here from Salinas,CA. :) It was quite an uneventful trip but both of us felt a cold coming on so it was a long couple of days. I actually started feeling a little bad after we dropped that last flower load in Chicago. I think it was getting in and out of the reefer doing the unloading at night when the temps were in the 40's. Anyway, I got some Dayquil for when we were driving and some Nyquil for at night. It seems like we caught it before it turned into a full blown cold for either of us so we are thankful for that. The last thing we wanted was to get sick when J is going hunting next week and while I will be driving solo with my dad with me. I wouldn't be much company sick and I definitely don't want to get my dad sick!

We ended up with about 12 hours of extra time on this load and we were routed through Springfield,MO so it was a perfect time to get our TWIC stuff done. This is a new Homeland Security program. Anyone entering any water port has to have a Transportation Workers Identification Card. I even noticed a few weeks ago a sign in Baltimore (I believe or maybe it was Boston....anyway) but the sign said "As of November 8 TWIC cards required for entry to Port". And from the sounds of it other companies are looking at this as an industry wide type of identification card and will be requiring it for admittance to their plants. Not that Homeland Security can enforce it in that manner, they can only enforce it on the Ports, but I kind of think it is a good idea. So many places we deliver want some identification, and they won't accept our company ID, so we have to give them our drivers license. I am thinking that if this identification card becomes industry wide, they will start accepting that as ID and not requiring our drivers license. Coming from a law enforcement background, I have issues with giving some random security guard or company worker my drivers license. Do you know how easily your identy can be stolen??

Moving along.... We got that done last night there at Prime and from there we only had 586 miles to go and an appointment at 1730 today. So we ate dinner there and spend the night. I got up and headed out around 0330 this morning. I managed to get us to the Petro at the Indiana/Ohio border where we grabbed some lunch and then J took over driving to get us the last 59 miles. We made it here right on time. Luckily we had been here before so I knew right where to go. While we were sitting here they already sent us another load. I guess things are slowing down a bit because this next load doesn't pick up until tomorrow evening at 1800. When J was looking at it he was hesitant to accept because I mean, really, 24 hours to be reloaded? I know things are slow, but come on. But after looking at it, it pays like $1700 and is under 700 miles. So we decided we didn't mind waiting for that. It will be a quick overnight delivery. Pick up at 1800 and deliver by 1100 the next day. That also puts us in a good area to get something that we can hopefully deliver back to Texas for our time at home. Or at least drop off to another team there in Texas so they can take it to the final destination.

So, for the moment we are just sitting here getting unloaded and then I think we are going to head about 20 miles up the road to a TA that is at exit 70 on I-70 here in Ohio. Then we will just kill some time until our pick up tomorrow evening. Plus they have a truck wash there and I am sure that we will need it after they unload this lettuce we are carrying.

I will post more later. Sorry I haven't been as religious with this as I used to be. Some days I am just so darn tired! But I will try to get better for you guys. I know some of you guys follow this, and I am really glad that you do, so I will be more diligent for you!

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Sometimes this seems like our second home we are here so much! This load that we just delivered this morning in Sacramento is a load that we picked up in Bedford,Park,IL. There wasn't much time on the load and even going 65-70 the whole way we only made it 20 minutes early. Usually the way our schedule works I am the one that drives down Donner Pass and into the Sacramento area because we usually have a morning appointment to unload. This time we had an appointment at 2330 hours so J got to drive down it. And I am glad he did! He said it was raining like crazy, water running over the road along with mud coming off the hills AND when he was at the top, it was snowing! Yikes! I do believe that winter is making an appearance. Anyway, when he got there and got loaded, we still had not received our next work assigment. Since FedEx was closed basically, except for inbound trailers being dropped, there was no one there so we decided to stay parked there for a while. A little bit later our next work assigment came across but there was no appointment time and they couldn't set an appointment until morning when the businesses opened. Therefore, we decided to stay parked there for the remainder of the night. The drivers lounge was unlocked and we had access to a restroom so that was all we needed.

Around 0700 I got up and headed towards Salinas where we were picking up at Dole. I still didn't have an appointment but figured I better head that way in case I had received a message with an appointment right when they opened. When I was about 50 miles away from the shipper I received an appointment time of 1200. That was good and gave me a few extra hours. My first stop in Salinas was at Valley Truck Stop where I had hoped to get the trailer washed out. It was fairly clean, but you never know how picky they will be on a produce load. Turns out the truck wash was closed. So much for getting it washed. Then I proceed down the block and across the street to the Pilot where a much needed shower was to be had. I woke J up and asked him if he wanted to get up and shower and he said he would shower after we picked the load up. Inside I go and about 30 minutes later I come out feeling much better!

Now I head over to Dole and figure I will wait until our appointment there. They are usually busy with trucks lined up waiting to get loaded. I was surprised to find only one other truck, a Prime truck, there at the facility. Not a single other truck. And I was there an hour early. At the guard shack she gives me a door and tells me to go on in to get loaded. Awesome! At noon, which is when the actual appointment time was, I was done and pulling out of the dock. Slid the tandems, hit the scale and headed back to the Pilot for J to get his shower and to fuel and scale on their CAT Scale.

I pull into the fuel aisle happy to see that there is still plenty of parking spots. As I was fueling a TrailLiner truck pulls through and the lady rolls down the window and asks how we like Prime. They are thinking of switching companies when her husbands contract is up with them. We talk a few minutes and then decide to go grab a bite of lunch and keep talking with them. So we headed across the street to the Taqueria and had a really nice visit with a really nice couple. I hope we answered all of their questions, but I am sure they will have more. They are doing the right thing though and talking to everyone they can about Prime. I gave them our information and phone number though so they could contact us if they have any further questions. I hope they call and keep in touch. We really enjoyed visiting with them. And they have the cutest little dog named Tucker that Smokey liked. They played for a while but we didn't let them off their leashes and they got tangled up a few times. Tucker is a Bijon and Yorkie mix. He is adorable!

Right now we are headed south on the 101 and will be cutting over to Barstow so we can take I-40 over to Springfield,OH. I-70 is shorter but they want us taking the southern route. We are also going to stop in Springfield,MO at the yard and get this TWIC stuff taken care of. I have to call in the morning and have our FM set up an appointment so we can get that done on Tuesday afternoon. Luckily we have some extra time on this load and can get it done.

That is what is up with us. Just a little less than two weeks until J goes hunting and my Dad rides with me for the week. I am so excited! It will be a lot of fun getting to spend some quality Father and Daughter time together. And he can see what J and I do for a living and then I can impress him with my ability to drive one of these huge monsters without the aid of a phone book to reach the pedals and without wrecking! :)

Friday, October 31, 2008

Des Moines,IA

Well, after my last entry, we made it into Arcadia,FL and delivered to Walmart. After that, as expected, we ended up with another flower load. This time they had us head to Miami and pick up there, then go to Pierson,FL where we dropped that trailer and picked up another one with our load on it. What they do is bring trailers full of product from the Prime Floral in Miami to the Prime Floral in Pierson. Once the trailers get to Pierson they unload them and then reload other trailers based on what the customers order. So we grabbed a shower there and were off. This time we only had six stops instead of the 14 so it wasn't near as bad. What was cool about this load though is that the last stop was in the Chicago area. So when we dropped our last bit of flowers, we told our FM that we were taking the night off to see Justin since that is where he is stationed at. We were also able to spend the first part of the day with a high school friend of mine that I hadn't seen in about 9 years! It was so good to see her again! We had lost touch and she had an unlisted number but she happened to find me on Myspace. How cool is that?

We had a nice time visiting with her and then later with Justin. Then we headed to the hotel for a night of rest that was not in the truck. We told our FM we would be available the next afternoon at 1600 so that we would be able to get a 34 hr restart out of the deal. We got up the next morning and did a little shopping at the mall. We still have our summer clothes and we were in serious need of some warmer clothing. While we were at the mall our FM called and said he had a load for us. As soon as we were finished shopping we headed back over to the Mars facility to pick up an empty trailer. While I was on the way over there he sent a message saying that he was going to take us off that load because it was only 900 miles and didn't deliver until Saturday which meant we would be sitting because there was too much time on it for a team. A little while later he sends us another load headed to Sacramento. It is a FedEx load but it didn't pick-up until this morning at 0800. We decided that we would head to the I-55 Truck Stop in Bolingbrook,IL and spend the night there since it was only about 17 miles from where we needed to pick up and there aren't many choices in the Chicago area when it comes to truck parking.

Well, we picked up this morning and hit the road. J went back to bed for a while and after hitting the road at 0900, I made it to the Bosselman's Pilot on the east side of Des Moines,IA a whopping 349 miles down the road. Now we are left with 1736 miles to go by 2300 tomorrow night in Sacramento,CA. We are going to be late. There just isn't enough time on this load. Even with J driving 600 miles tonight on his shift, me doing 600 miles tomorrow on mine and then him doing the last bit, it looks like we will still be a couple hours late. At least it is just a drop and they won't be waiting on us to get there for a live unload so a couple hours shouldn't matter.

Our FM is going on vacation starting tomorrow so I sent him a message asking to get us pre-planned on a load going back to Arcadia,FL with some produce out of the Sacramento area. That is usually a good paying load to that Walmart and then we should get a flower load out of there which also pays good. Plus, a little physical labor unloading those flowers is good for us after sitting on our asses all day!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Marianna,FL - Again

Seems we were just here last week. Or there abouts anyway. We are ahead of schedule and had to kill some time. We drop this load in Arcadia,FL at a Walmart DC but we can't arrive more than an hour early. There is a Pilot about 10 miles from our drop but there won't be any parking when we would arrive there in the middle of the night since our appointment is at 0330. Therefore I stopped here for a few hours to let J get some non-moving rest. He was trying to get to sleep through Louisiana and that is near impossible!

Not much happened today. Had a nice drive and we are averaging 7.45 mpg for this trip from California so I am happy about that. I m curios to see if we get a flower load after this and exactly how many stops we will have. I guess we will have to wait until in the morning to find out.

That is all for now I guess. Not much to report!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Wichita Falls,TX

Ok, let me catch you up. After I last posted with trekked across I-80 with a stop in Ogalalla,NE to have dinner with friends. Took off and made it about 30 miles down the road before pulling over to stop for about an hour because a big rain storm was passing through and there was some really high wind. It passed and we head out again. I go ahead and head to bed knowing that J should get me to somewhere in Utah. Or at least close to the UT/WY border. Around 2330 he wakes me up and tells me he is stopping for the night. Apparently winter decided to make an appearance and it was a white out blizzard outside. No problemo, got a good nights sleep with the truck stopped.

Got up the next morning, had breakfast and headed out. Roads still a little icy but the further west I went the cleared they got. Stopped at a rest area about 45 miles west of Laramie when I got a message from our FM. There is a team about 70 miles behind us with a FedEx load that they can't make on time and he is asking us to take it over. What the hell, the pay is about the same, a little less actually. But the load is about 20K lbs lighter. Sweet. They meet us at the rest area where we swap and I am off. Driving, driving, driving and we make it to somewhere in Nevada around 0300. I get up and with 398 miles to go before noon, I am off. I make it to the FedEx facility in Sacramento with 45 minutes to spare. Find out it is a drop and hook (YES!) so we drop it, grab and empty and send in our depart macro and sit there and wait.

I sent our FM a message asking if we had time for a shower and laundry but he said to hang tight because he thought he had a load for us. About 10 minutes later he asks if we are ok with multi-stop flower loads and as I am replying we get our work assignment. Go to Salinas and pick up a produce load going to Arcadia,FL. Mmmm Ok, what happened to the flower load? He said that is what we will likely get coming out of Florida. Okey dokey, I am tracking now. J takes over and gets us to Salinas where we decide we will pick up the load and then go park and get laundry and showers. Nope, looks like sales dropped the ball and forgot to make an appointment after they got the load. They gave us an appointment when I got there, but for 2200 hrs that night. And the truck stops were already full so that meant no showers and no laundry. ARGH! I head to bed and J waits to get loaded. After he gets loaded, he just pulls back in their parking lot and waits for the time to wake me up. He is a sweetheart and lets me sleep until 0400. Once I am able to pry my eyes open, I head to the Pilot to scale the load and I head out. I made it to Barstow and we decided to stop there to do laundry and get a much needed shower. With this load going to Florida, we have 3 full days, that is six shifts with 3 shifts each and only 2780 miles to go. That means it is at most a 500 mile shift and we have extra time.

So now we are driving through North Texas on US 287 headed towards Dallas. We will hit I-20 down there and then I think it is I-49 through Louisiana and then pick up I-10. I am curious to see what flower load we end up with. I really wasn't fond of that 14 stop one we had last time. However, it paid damn good, and I guess I wouldn't mind it again since now I would know the stops and where I was going. Plus, I fully intend to take the night off after we do the flower load because they wear you out!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Fort Bend,IN

Actually we switched drivers at the service plaza in Howe,IN but we just left the Pilot in Fort Bend where we got fuel.

So you know how I posted yesterday and was at Quad Graphics in Martinsburg,WV waiting to be loaded, right? Well, our appointment was at 1230 and I got there around 1145. She said they were running a little behind so I told her no problem. I turned on my CB and waited for her to call me to a dock. FINALLY at around 1730 I was called to a dock 38. Sweet. Pulled to that dock, backed in and set the brakes without a single pull up. It was really beautiful. And I proceeded to wait. About 30 minutes later she calls me on the CB and asks me not to kill her, but could I go back around to the back side (where I was at to begin with) and back into door 55 instead. Sure, no problem. Start the truck, head to the back and get in door 55. Wait....Wait....Wait.... Guess what time we were finally loaded and called up to pick up our paperwork? 0130 in the morning! Yes, that is 13 hours past our appointment time. The only good thing is that we better be getting detention pay out of this ordeal. Especially after dropping the load Saturday morning and not getting this load until Sunday afternoon.

Since it was already 0130, J just went back around to the back after he got the paperwork and parked until I got up at 0300. Then I headed out. Only made it about 503 miles because there were some good hills there in WV. But when I closed my log for the day I felt like I had accompolished something. I had entries in WV, MD, PA, OH and IN. So I crossed 5 states. Not bad!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Happy Birthday to J!!!

Y, today is his birthday! I won't say how old he is, because he is insisting that he is only turning 30 this year. But I will tell you that he turned 40 two years ago. So you can do the math but he can't be mad at me because I didn't tell you. :) Unfortunately being on the road, we didn't get to do anything to celebrate. But I did treat him to Waffle House last night, so that should count for something. haha

When we left Laredo,TX headed to Toughkenamon,PA we knew that we would have to kick it up to make it on time. Only stopping for fuel and the necessary bathroom breaks, I made it there about 10 minutes late. I notified dispatch so it wasn't a problem. If I hadn't stopped about 2 hours before to go to the bathroom, I would have made it on time. But a girl can only hold it for so long if you know what I mean. I was able to get there and get right to a dock but when they unloaded me, they took forever to count. It was an 0900 appt and I got out of there around 1030 so it really wasn't bad.

While I was there I sent a message in asking how freight was looking because I was going to need a washout on the trailer before I picked up anything else and I was kinda wondering which direction to head to get that done. The message back said that it was pretty slow on freight so I decided to head back south to Elkton,MD to the Petro where there was a Blue Beacon. After I got the trailer washed out I headed to the parking lot to kill some time. That was when J woke up so we decided to head in for a shower and hit the soup and salad bar for a light lunch. I sent a message in telling them that if we got a load to call me on my cell so that I would know we needed to hurry. We headed in and went straight for the shower first. She asked if we wanted a double shower and I said yes. Usually, they just give you a bigger shower for a couple, if they have one instead of one of those tiny ones where you can touch both sides of the room if you stretch your arms out. When we got to the shower room, it was indeed a bigger room, but the shower itself had two shower heads! I hadn't seen that before in a truck stop shower. I thought it was pretty cool. Anyway, get the shower and before we go in to grab lunch, we threw our dirty clothes and the backpack into the washer. Apparently either my shampoo or conditioner cap was loose and spilled. Ick! But at least we didn't have to put soap in the washer!

Finally had lunch and I headed back out to the truck to take Smokey out while J waited for the clothes to finish drying. When I get out there, I find that we have a load waiting. Hmmm Why didn't I get a call? So I start going through the messages and realize why. It is currently Saturday afternoon when we received the load assignment but it doesn't pick up until Sunday afternoon. Now some people would be mad and want a load that leaves out that day. Not me. I figure we basically live in this truck, so I will take a little down time whenever it comes my way. Besides, today is J's birthday (Sunday) so if we can get out of the truck for a few hours or overnight, then I am all for it. While I am writing the stuff down for the load and waiting on J, I look up and realize the Petro is right next to a Motel 6. Well, isn't that convenient! I make a call and they have plenty of room so I start packing up. When J gets back to the truck, I tell him the plan and we are off! We even ended up getting a room on the back side of the hotel and we could see our truck from our window. That was nice. We got situated and were going to order pizza, but we didn't have cash on us so we decided screw it, we will walk across the street to the Waffle House which is one of J's favorite places to eat. I couldn't give him a nice steak dinner for his birthday, but he loves to eat breakfast any time of the day, so he was happy.

With our bellies way to full, we headed back to the room and I forced myself to stay up long enough to catch Sarah Palin on Saturday Night Live. I found it extremely hysterical. Finally I fell asleep only to hear my alarm clock go off way to soon for my liking. But we didn't have much choice if we wanted to get to our pickup on time. We still had to walk back over to the truck and drive about 150 miles. Of course I make it here to Martinsburg,WV about 45 minutes early only to be told they were running a couple hours behind. This is when I wish I knew these things in advance because I would have stayed in bed longer! But that is just how it goes.

So that is where we are now. I am killing time waiting to be loaded. Once we are ready to go, we will be headed to Tracy,CA and then to our final stop in Richmond,CA which are both due there on Wednesday morning. Keep your fingers crossed that the rain they are prediciting in Wyoming stays just that, rain. It is too early for me to deal with snow!