Sunday, January 21, 2007

What A Trip!

Let me start by saying, "Mistakes were made", and not just by me...

I was to leave Rockford by 10 am on the 16th, be in Peoria to pick up the load by 12 noon (a real stretch in a straight truck), leave Peoria by 12:30 and be in Beaufort, NC by 5pm on the 18th.

That was the plan.

First off, this should've been a team run. Beaufort, NC is 17 hours away from Rockford, IL. I had to stop after 11 hours, rest for 10, and so on, rather than switch off with another driver so the truck keeps moving.

Secondly, I got to Peoria at 12:30 and didn't get loaded and gone until 1:30.

Thirdly, I made the mistake of going through Ohio, a state just as bad as Illinois when it comes to speed limits - 55 mph is just stoopid!

Now, I said that Beaufort is 17 hours away. Peoria wasn't in the equation. That should've made it 20. Also, traffic conditions weren't considered.

The whole way I was two hours behind schedule, and that's just frustrating!

I'll just say that by 5pm on the 18th, I was still 2 hours away from my stop. By the time I'd've gotten there it would've been about 8pm and the place closed for the night.

So I stopped for ten, as per DOT regulations.

Wait. It's gonna get better.

Next morning, around 5 am, I'm up and running. Found Beaufort fine. Found the cross street fine. Oops, I missed my turn. No big deal, just go to next street, around the block, and come back.


Did I mention that Beaufort, NC is on an island? Well....

I couldn't go down to the next block, because the truck wasn't an amphibious vehicle, so I did what I've done dozens of times before - pull onto the shoulder, reverse, pull forward, and repeat until I've turned the truck around.

What I didn't know was that it had been raining there for 2 and a half weeks, turning the shoulder into quicksand.

*Visual* Me in a 28' straight truck, front end stuck on one side of the road, rear end stuck on the other, up to the axles, two blocks away from my stop.

Funny, huh? It gets better....

I call my boss, tell him I'm stuck. He wasn't too upset, just asked where exactly I was (Steel Tank Road, Beaufort, NC.) and , said "I'll call a wrecker and get ya pulled out."

An hour later he calls me: "Where are you? The wrecker can't find you and I don't see you on the map."

We have GPS units installed in all the trucks.

I said, "Boss, I'm in Beaufort, NC on Steel Tank Road. He can't miss me; I'm in a big white truck blocking off the end of the street 3oo feet from the bay!"

Long story short(er), I sat there for FIVE BLOODY HOURS waiting for a wrecker to pull me out, all the while fielding questions from curious locals, most of whom were just wanting to help, but one conversation went like this:

Him: "Gotcherself stuck, huh?"
Me: "Naw, this just looked like a good place to park."

I'll tell you, the reason it took FIVE BLOODY HOURS to get out of the mud was because my boss and the DP (dispatcher) were talking to a towing company in Buford, SC.

That's Buford, South-fucking-Carolina!!! No wonder the dude couldn't find me, I was roughly 300 hundred fucking miles away!!!

I don't know how many times I told them "Beaufort. North Carolina".


When I left, the white board in the DP office had my name and destination written on it, along with truck number and cell phone number (it was all still on the board when I got back).

On their computer is a map to my destination.

And in the truck is a fucking GPS system, so they can find me anywhere, anytime, right?

They couldn't look on the low-tech whiteboard first? They couldn't look on my map? They couldn't look at the fucking GPS?!?

Well, they finally got a local wrecker, he was there within 15 minutes, and had me out of the mud in 30 minutes. I made my delivery and came home.

The return trip was uneventful.


In the morning, I'm going to have an interesting conversation with my boss...

Thanks for the good thoughts and/or prayers. That must've been what got me through. :-)

That's all for now. Maybe I'll let ya know how my chat with the boss goes...

God bless, ya'll.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

I'm North Carolina Bound!

I'll be back soon. I got a sweet run to NC. I don't know where exactly I'm going yet in NC, but I'll find out before I leave.....


I don't usually get a run that far away: they're normally reserved for teams and I just don't play well with others, unless there're Irish session players and I don't work with any.

I just hope all goes well, with me being away and the family staying behind. I don't know, just got a weird feeling is all.

If you're so inclined, throw a prayer or good thought our way while I'm away.
I'm sure it's nothing, but still.....

Roll on, ya'll!

Monday, January 15, 2007

What Time Is It? Is It Still January?

Damn, that was one helluva New Year's party!!!

Now if I could only remember.....

Something about glogg

(Mmmmm, glogg...)

and Harvey demanding I sing "White and Nerdy" while playing the bodhran, and LittleJoe picking up TNT

(Nothing funny there, he was picking her up. Physically. Ya know I can't write that in an unprovocative way...)

and Contagion (or maybe it was Grau.... things were blurry at this point) saying, "Hey, wanna see something sick and disgusting?"

(In future, for the LOVE OF GOD, say NO!!!)

Thanks Contagion and Ktreva! When it comes to throwing a party, nobody does it better! I hear I had a great time....... ;^)