Wednesday, February 26, 2014

We've Been Everywhere

It certainly feels like it! We have been all over Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and Massachusetts...and we aren't through yet! I have been unplugged from blogging for most of this month. However, I have been on Facebook some, because that is easier from my trusty "smart phone". (If you send me a friend request I am likely to accept it.)

Blogging from an 18-wheeler is very difficult. It isn't like blogging while on vacation. Your time isn't your own. You are also in a small space with another person, and perhaps a dog (in our case, Stella). If you can get an Internet connection, it may not be consistent or it may be slow to the point of utter frustration, even tears. (Embarrassingly true.)

Please also take into consideration that a trucker's hours are not, by any means "normal". You may drive eight hours one day, only to drive eight hours the next night. You may start a shift in the Central Time Zone cross into the Eastern Time Zone, only to end up back in the Central Time Zone. It can be very confusing trying to remember where you have been...or even where you are! You forget what time it is, or sometimes even the day. While Bill, being the professional driver, always knows what is going on, I am sometimes clueless about these details. It is exhausting! Add weather to that, running the gamut from rain to freezing rain, or from snow to thunder snow...or any combination of weather conditions. We have had it all.

In addition, Shippers may not have loads ready and you may wait for 12 hours or more for a you try to catch up on laundry, sleep, or other necessities. Other times loads are ready early, while you are in the middle of laundry, sleep, or other necessities. In that case, you drop everything and go get the load, because after all, that is your job. Needless to say, blogging doesn't always fit into the scenario, and isn't a priority over the job.

Receivers have their set of rules, too. They have schedules where you cannot be early or late. They may have no schedule and go by "first come first served", but they may still take you out of order. You may spend hours in line, waiting to be unloaded. They are the customer and you are at their mercy, however. 

There are often mechanical issues. The APU (Auxiliary Power Unit) on the truck stopped working twice, which meant no heat or air. Those nights were cold, and the days in Texas were a bit warm. It is inconvenient, but a fact of trucking. There are other repairs and maintenance issues, too. They must all be scheduled around pick-ups and deliveries, as those are the priorities. Trucking is a full time, 24/7 job. There is no real break, because you are always bound to the truck. You cannot just clock out and leave (the load and truck). 

I have taken many pictures and notes to recap my experience to share when I get home. I miss blogging, and all of my faithful blogging friends. Please know that you are important to me. I have been able to read and comment on some blogs, while others  I have not been able to get to for a variety of reasons. I apologize. I will catch up when I get home and back into my "normal" routine. I will be joining and re-joining memes then, as well. 

I miss all of you and your blogs. I miss sharing my thoughts and posts, too. Please hang in there with me! I appreciate it, and each of you! I will catch up soon. Until then, perhaps I will see you on Facebook!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Road Trip with Bill

This month I will be on a road trip with Bill. I will be away for about three weeks. It has been awhile since I went out on the road. After changing trucking companies last fall, Bill needed to get settled in. He is very anxious for me to ride along, now. Since he began trucking, we spend between three to six weeks apart at a time. This past Christmas was the first holiday we shared in a few years. Our time together is a bit unique, but a reality of long haul trucking.
For the last couple of weeks, I have been preparing to go on this road trip. It takes a lot planning to be gone for three weeks! We are blessed to have a neighbour and friend come in to care for our FurKids. Maggie, Grizelda and Chloe Jo will be staying "home alone" (uh oh). Thank goodness for our neighbour's supervision and care! Stella will be going on this trip with us.

I will still check in as I can. You are all important to me. However, I may not be able to join in on memes until I am back home. I will also post as I am able. Trucks use main routes, but often end up in the middle of nowhere, such as cattle country. There are times that truck stops are not an option, either. Some of the places Bill goes to are very remote. 

I will be back home and blogging as usual soon. Please know that I will be taking pictures and notes. I will share these when I am home. I hope you will follow along, and join me then. Until then, we are on an adventure together!
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