Sunday, December 3, 2017

Home.  Midnight. 
I knew this morning when I started I wouldn't be home til' late.  It takes that plant that I have been to twice now 4 hours to unload the truck. They're not in any hurry.  It's whatever to me, I get paid to stand there and watch them, or go sit in the truck and go snooze, or read or whatever.  Between the load plant and the unload plant I have 8 hours of detention pay, plus 4 stop pays, plus mileage.  That trip was worth at least $750 for a day and a half work. 

Well, when I finally got out of that place, I decided to push myself to get home tonight.  I wanted to have a full day off before going out again Monday.  But, I ran into fuel card trouble again. I hate Petro truck stops. Just because of the issues I've always had with trying to use fuel cards at them.  But that is the company they want us to use. Well, after running into that today, the first Love's I saw after that? I stopped there and walaah. No problems at all.  Excepting the company has a dollar limit on how much fuel you can put in because apparently there were theft problems. 

I need to stop for a minute and think. My mind is all over the place.  Money, Christmas, mom, the house, here, dogs, this that and the other thing.  Oh yeah! A Christmas tree!  Need to get one tomorrow if I"m not out of it.  I won't be going to bed until around 1:30 or 2:00 am, I just can't come home and go straight to sleep. Doesn't work that way for me. I have to wind down, let everything settle, get back into the groove of being home and then, fatigue will hit me and I will fall right asleep.  I'm tempted to put the dogs out for a few minutes so they aren't waking me up early to go out.  Good idea!

Okay, well, not much new going on in my life.  Besides this new job, of course. Which is good because this job is really taxing me.  I know if I stick with it I will eventually get this all down, but the amount of "stuff" that has to be done on any given trip is amazing.  Far more paperwork and minutia than any other job I've had.  If the pay weren't so good, it definitely wouldn't be worth it.  I'm just going with the flow here.  Learning how to use the truck's coils to turn liquid into vapor to pressurize the tank should be interesting. In fact, learning how to unload the truck period should be interesting. 

I have been asking a lot of questions, the dude at the plant where the ethylene is loaded into the truck knows more than anyone I talk to and he is way too willing to impart that knowledge, so my 2 times there so far have been filled with endless questions.  I can tell ya, if I were the dude that was running that orientation? All this time wasted on junk that has zero relevance to the position would be scaled way back and actual knowledge of how to do your job, including the literal nuts and bolts of it, would actually be taught. 

Well today I finally found out what those coils under the the trailer do. If you are unloading instead of a plant unloading, you have to pressurize the trailer's tank to force the liquid out of the tube into the plant.  Well, this stuff will turn to vapor at 120 below zero.  Vapor creates pressure.  You open a valve, the liquid goes through the coils, which heats it up and causes the liquid to turn into vapor, which pressurizes the tank, which forces the liquid out of the tubes.  Well, the chambers I guess.

Yes, I freely admit to these people at these plants that I have absolutely no clue what I am doing. I had to have the dude at the loading plant show me the valve to turn on in case the pressure gets too high while driving down the road.  I've been warned 6 ways from Sunday not to allow the pressure relief valves to open while driving down the road. I mean, from at least 5 people.  Yet they wouldn't give me the time of day to go show how that is done. Instead, this dude at the Eastman plant showed me the valve to open and how much pressure to vent out and yes, get away from people. Get away from everything.  Why? Because a cigarette thrown out of a car window could ignite the stuff and send me to eternity. 

I'll tell ya now, I'm more concerned about rollovers than blowups and ice ages.  This tanker business is freaky to me. It always has been, yet at the same time, I've always wanted to do it.

Anyway, it's really late. The business of driving trucks that is not confined to a "local" run type of thing is pretty interesting. 

Interesting day. Up early - 4:00, jolted out of deep sleep by the ridiculous phone alarm - annoying as all get out but that's the inten...