Saturday, September 8, 2018

4 days since my last post.  I got up Wednesday morning early, went to the Dutch Bros. coffee across the street - 24 hour place, constant line, 24 hours a day, amazing considering this isn't a really big town or anything - got a coffee and a latte.  Got in the truck, got over to the plant. It's just on the other side of the Columbia River.  I mean, you get across the river, take the exit right there, and a few miles down along the river is this plant. 

The first thing I discovered was ample room for one of the new trailers.  I mean, whoever told my manager that this place isn't big enough to maneuver one of these things around in there?  Not a truck driver.  That's all I can say about it.  I found out later that the person that told her that no longer works for the company.  This plant hasn't been fired up in a year, well 10 months I think.  So, starting it up? Of course! It's going to be an elongated, wait forever delay.  I had no doubts about this which is why I took 2 coffees with me. 

But I hadn't slept well, the over pressuring on the tank was keeping me up and I felt like crap that morning.  Hours and hours sitting there, waiting on them to get their act together and get this place up and running so we could unload this trailer and I could get the Hercules out of there.  Finally get the product flowing - but their pressure was high.  Meaning I had to get mine really high to pump it into their system.  It took forever. I was at that plant for almost 8 hours.  That's a regular working day for a lot of people.  Not for me.  Got done with that place and hoofed it down the road.

But you know? I was exhausted and worn out.  I drove 210 miles and pulled into a truckstop and slept - over slept - actually - for the night.  3 days after that and I am finally home. 

Lots I could tell about the route back, but I'm just burned out from that trip and I just want to relax. Of course, getting back to the yard, I found a notice to all employees in my mailbox.  They "changed" their bonus requirements.  One of them I found laughable. If you get an overspeed "event", you won't get a bonus and you won't get one for 3 full periods after that.  Overspeed is when you are going over the company speed limit to the point the system automatically engages a "critical event" advisory and sends it to the company. Yes folks, you go 3 miles an hour over the speed limit of 65 mph and you get an over speed event and you lose your bonus for a long, long time. 

I'm sorry, but this company isn't worthy of my driving for it.  This is just  a copout, a way to say we don't want to give out bonuses so you have to be a perfect little driving angel and make no mistakes, whatsoever, or you're toast.  I've had 2 of these instances. The last one, I had the trailer brakes locking up for a few seconds coming to a stop at a light - a light where the speed limit is 75mph - yes even through the intersection.  It turned yellow, I knew I wouldn't get stopped in time without cranking on the brakes (oh, I was going 64mph, the highest speed that truck will go except for gravity pulling it down a hill).  Anyway, there was a car sitting right there at the edge of the intersection.  I thought, I'm not blowing this light with that car sitting there, that person pulls out and we're both going to have a very bad day.

So, I get dinged for using my best judgement.  I actually had to give an explanation to the company about why I had a "hard braking event".  This place can go screw themselves.  I'm going to try and last the full year that I had previously I was going to at least do, which I think is 3 more months and then I'm going full scale into looking for a new job.  Screw their purchase program, screw them. Big brother watching over your shoulder?  You don't even know what it's like to have this system recording every single freaking thing you are doing in the truck.  It's ridiculous and it's outrageous, IMO.

The CEO of this company was lamenting why they had hired a lot of new drivers last year and ... subsequently... alot of those new drivers quit.  Well gee, dude, if you can't figure it out, ASK THE DRIVERS. BYPASS your management that are saving their jobs and find out what's going on. 

Whatever, I'm not going to waste any more mental space on that tonight. I turned on a movie, I'm enjoying being home, Adler started punching me when I got to the other house lol.
He gets up on his hind legs and throws his front paws at you.  It's actually, uh, kind of intimidating. The dog is huge, the paws are huge, the power behind the paws is substantive.  But, I thrust him off of me and we go at it for a while and then we're all buddies again.  I dunno dog minds, but I think it's his way of showing his disapproval of me being gone too long and at the same time happiness that I'm back. 

Tomorrow, I intend on smoking some meats.  In fact, thank you for reminding me, I was going to make a smoked meatloaf.  Just want to try a small scale version of it. Like a one pound deal.  So I need to go and get some hamburger meat out, is what I'm saying, lol.  I want to spice this on up nicely.  Cayenne pepper, some red chiles and put some pepper jack in the middle of it.  We'll coat it with a spicy covering and call it dinner.  The kids won't eat it but there will be plenty of other stuff to eat.  Anyway, I pulled out one rack of ribs.  We traditionally won't eat 2 full racks, so one will suffice and I pulled out a beef roast that I bought on sale for it being at the end of it's shelf life. 

The roast is small and it's only a pound of beef.  The roast will be smoked for 2 hours and then wrapped up well in tin foil.  The ribs as well.  The meatloaf doesn't take as long to cook and I have to look up the recipe again. It's a pretty spicy version of it.  We'll have some potatoes with it, tho easier to make version such as tater tots and a cold salad of some sort.  There is going to be company over, more mouths to feed, but really I just want to do some cooking.  I want to be home for awhile.

This trip has given me some new perspective on things I will write about tomorrow or future date. 

But I need not go into that now. I really like this movie for some odd reason.. It's called Passengers and it's pretty crazy. 

Anyway, it's a great evening.  I'ts getting a bit late depending on what perspective I want to take. I'm going to bed around midnight, which used to be a very late hour for me, now seems to be a good bedtime lol. 

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...