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 load...so 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!

41 comments:

  1. Enjoy your time with hubby, and I'm sure this will be a time you will never forget. Sleep, eat, and be merry!

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    1. Thanks Gigi Ann. I respect what Bill does. It is not an easy job.

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  2. It is good to see a post from you. What an adventure you are having! I am looking forward to seeing those pictures. Stay safe you two plus Stella.

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    1. Thank you, Beth! I have stories and pictures! Coming soon... Hugs.

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  3. I know this life, my sister in law was married to an over the road truck driver, most of their married life, and she rarely went with him. She kept up the home front and held a job, so it wasn't the easiest for her. Plus, she really wasn't a fan of it! But it does have it's ups too!

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    1. Bill reinvented himself due to the economy. He was in manufacturing engineering and sales for 35 years. This is hard, but we each do our part to make it work. Commitment.

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  4. thanks for the peek into this hard and necessary job. :)

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  5. It sounds like truckers are just what i've always thought -- great, hard working people, salt of the earth types. Enjoy your time on the road, and know you are missed.

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    1. Mimi, thank you. Though not all truckers are, many are, and Bill certainly is that. Hug.

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  6. You are on an adventure!!! I am so excited to hear all about the trip. I know you are having a great time with Bill (and Stella) and all the interesting things along the way are part of the charm, right? Miss you and glad you are having fun! I always think of Bill when I see a semi--always. And lately I have thought that maybe you were there, too, in that truck I just saw!

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  7. Wow, McGuffy Ann. There are so many things about life as a trucker that had never occurred to me. Thank you for sharing this little glimpse into where you've been and what's been going on. We are glad you and Bill are getting lots of time together on this trip, and look forward to pics and tales of your travels when you're back. :)

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    1. Thanks so much. You are all in my prayers. Hugs.

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  8. We miss you too! Thank you for sharing this because I bet so many of us never realized just how much your husband has to go through on the road. You and Stella are real troopers to be handling it well too! Safe travels and see you soon!

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    1. Thanks. I really appreciate this from you. I really respect Bill and what he does.

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  9. I've often thought of you, Bill, and sweet Stella. What a big adventure you're having. Thanks so much for the update. Sending big hugs and good thoughts!

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    1. Thanks, Beth. I am always so pleased to hear from you. Hugs.

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  10. I see some similarities with trucking and dairy farming. Timing is everything and can spell success or failure. So much regulations to follow at every turn. It's a demanding and steady job, 24 /7, 365 days a year. The pay is lousy in comparison to the expenses but farming is a good way of life.

    I'm so glad that you are taking this time away from blogger to be with the most important person in your life. It's as important as a well oiled machine to work smoothly.

    I respect what Bill does for a living.

    Many over due hugs,
    JB

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    1. Julia, we have tremendous respect for farmers and all that you do. This comment means the world to us. Thank you. Hugs.

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  11. I've missed you. Came over to the blog just yesterday to see if you had returned, and thinking my e-mail notifications weren't working. Never thought about what a trucker's life was like. I just hate having to navigate I-81 because it is always 90 percent tractor-trailers. Sounds like really hard work with impossible schedules. Hope both of you are home soon. Hugs, Janet

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    1. Thank you for this. I was afraid I would be forgotten! Bill said he hates I 81, as well, that you are correct. It is a horrible, dangerous route. Stay safe! Hugs!

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  12. TN? I wish I had known. Maybe I could have seen you two! And Stella. But nonetheless I am so happy to see a blog here. My nephew is a Trucker and I have heard a lot about what his life is like. The schedule thing is the same as he said. You are at the mercy of the customer. xxoox

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    1. We ran through Tennessee on the way to Atlanta. I do hope to meet up with you sometime! I love TN! My kin are from there, too. It is beautiful. The mtns are incredible there. Hugs!

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  13. I've secretly fantasized about being married to a trucker and getting to do all of that traveling. Wish I'd been with you guys.

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    1. It is amazing, but so is Bill. Now we are in N. H. Each state has its own charm. We will be out another week.

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  14. What a life experience. I had been away on vacation and didn't had time to blog too, but now hopefully:)

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  15. My uncle was a trucker too -- gives me a better sense of what his life must have been like when out on the road. An exciting adventure in some sense for sure --- but definitely hard work. And a lot of waiting it seems. I probably would not be well suited due to the waiting part, but the idea of the open road definitely is appealing. :)
    Can't wait to see your pictures.
    You two take care and will pray for traveling mercies. <3

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    1. Trucking is hurry up and wait. Deadlines, but shippers and receivers aren't always in sync. There is also weather, mechanical issues, and regulations on drivers. It is hard.

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  16. Oh, I love that song! :)

    I'm glad you're having a good time. I imagine you're gathering a lot of writing material. ☺

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    1. I am working on it! I am sure seeing a lot of the country.

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  17. That's ok, glad you are having fun! I get frustrated using slow computers and sometimes come to tears also, it's not worth it! It looks like you have been to many places. Trucking sounds like a hard job. I don't think I would be able to stand being on the road that long. I would have to take breaks. Sorry y'all are not able to take many. I can't wait to hear about your trip! : )

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    1. Thanks, Joseph. You are sweet. I am happy to hear from you!

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  18. I miss your blog posts too. But you are with your hubby, and that's wonderful. We'll catch up when you do return. Safe travels - it's not a good winter for traveling.

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    1. Thank you for this. This has been one heckuva trip! Hugs.

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  19. Hello there! I hope you enjoyed your travels with all its difficulties.

    Why not write your blogs up in Word, or a notebook, prepare them when you have internet access and then schedule them? Even one a week would stop readers from straying :)

    But the travel with Bill is the most important thing :)

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  20. I just realized I hadn't commented on your post even though I read it some time ago. I am proud of Stella, she is so amenable to anything you ask of her. I know it is hard for both you and Bill, but I hope there is a lot of joy mixed in ... Will see you soon ... your babies, love the lovin' follow me around the house now,even Maggie. They are funny and fun :) ...

    Andrea @ From the Sol

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  21. You have been very busy with the travels and ups and downs of picking up and delivering loads. Not to worry about doing blog posts I know how hard that is when you are on the road even on a vacation. Can't wait to see all your photos.

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  22. What a wonderful adventure.

    Stay safe.

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  23. What fun to tour the states! My son in law is a trucker, but he hauls logs and doesn't have to go over the road. I'm glad you get to go with your dh!

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