As you should know by now, I drive a semi-truck to New York every week. I really don’t love this but I don’t hate it either. I just mostly hope for a uneventful trip. Get there, get an easy load out and get home with little hassle or effort. Well last week was NOT one of those weeks. There was a major storm that stretched from Michigan all the way to the ocean and I got stuck in it.
It was bad enough getting there with the blizzard conditions that made it hard to see further than 10 feet in front of my truck let alone the wind pushing my trailer like a sail all over the road. The storm started, for me, in mid-Ohio and didn’t end until I parked the stupid truck in New York. It was a miracle that I didn’t decide to just pull over and give up for the night, but I am a trooper and pushed it all the way. The journey only took me 14 hours to complete. That didn’t include the wasted time I spent at 2 different truck stops dealing with my company on the phone because they messed up my fuel card.
The next day I didn’t have a load back because all of the normal warehouses I pick up from were canceling due to the bad weather. So I sat there waiting for a load until 1:00 pm when I finally decided to drive to a truck stop near by and wait there. During this time it had been constantly snowing and sleeting and icing and whatever all over. There had been a 6″ accumulation and a 1″ thick layer of ice on top of that. As you can imagine, my truck didn’t move through this very well.
I had to call a heavy-duty tow truck to come and pull me out. This cost my company $400.
After getting out of that mess I proceeded to the expressway which is 5 miles up this horribly hilly road where I had to run 3 red stop lights to keep my momentum going so I wouldn’t get stuck again. I though that once I got to the expressway everything would be fine, because that’s usually the first thing that gets plowed and I can handle a little snow on the road. By this time my boss just told me to head home because there were no loads in the area for me to pick up. This news made me happy because I thought I could make it home bye a decent hour and put that terrible trip behind me.
Finally on I-87 and it’s moving at a clean 10 MPH. Yay. This pace went up and down for about a hour where I came to a stop. A dead stop. A pull-the-breaks-eat-some-food-watch-a-movie dead stop. For 6 hours.
I sat in the same spot from 4:00 pm until 10:00 pm. I passed the time by watching Gone in 60 Seconds and eating cereal and playing video games on the laptop.
I started to feel bad for the cars in front of me because I was all warm up in my truck with toys and food and because of my CB radio, I knew it would be a long time until we stared moving again. I took a bag of unopened pretzels (honey wheat braids, insanely good) and divided it up into 2 bags and gave it to the cars in front of me. I kept thinking how terrible it would be to just be on your way home from work and get stuck on the road with no end in sight. Apparently we sat there waiting for 5 accidents to be cleaned up ahead of us.
Finally when we started rolling, we got back up to our full speed of 20 MPH. Did this for about 30 minutes where we came to another stop. FOR ANOTHER 6 HOURS.
We (I keep saying ‘we’ because I felt like I went through this with a bunch of people since I was on the CB talking to them a lot of the time) ended up having to sleep right there on the express way parked bumper to bumper.
I was awakened by a cop banging on my cab telling me to get rolling. This was 4:30 am. I was able to drive for another 90 minutes (about 20 miles) when we came to, you know it, another dead stop. FOR ANOTHER 3 1/2 HOURS. So, I went back to sleep.
Again I was awoken by someone banging on my cab to let meh know that sleepy-time was over. We then got to drive for another 1/2 hour where we came to ANOTHER STOP. But this time it only lasted for 45 minutes and then I was off and rolling on my way home. After about 1 hour of driving 30 MPH, the road dried up and I was up to full speed and as the miles passed I began to forget what I had just gone thorough. I made it home at about 7:00 pm and got the next 2 days off.
So, now you know that your job doesn’t suck as bad as mine does. Does it.