Friday, September 20, 2019

Friday - noonish time.
The decision to take the alternate route was a sound one, speaking after the fact.
I got to the juncture where I would either head down the normal way through Houston or go the alt route and something in side of me said - alternate route!  I hated to do it because I didn't know whether I would have enough hours to make it to Brownsville the same day going that way.  I have never taken that route, tho one other driver said it adds 30 minutes to the drive. 

I was halfway through that alt route - passing under I-10 well west of Houston - when my manager texted everyone:  The roads are closed in Houston but Highway 79 to 77 is still good.  It wasn't long after that that I started seeing the images of the flooding in Houston and a picture of I-45 in North Houston.  The pic showed the entire Interstate flooded, a lot of cars and trucks - all bunched up on the side that had tried to escape the flooding.  Most of those vehicles did not appear to have avoided it, many of them were half or completely submerged.

And other pics of neighborhoods flooded, service roads flooded and reports that most if not all highways had been closed.  If I had taken that route, I would have had to turn around, go almost all the way back up and take the alt route anyway.  I did, indeed, make it down here without much time to spare either on the 11 hour driving clock or the 14 hour on-duty clock.  The alternate route takes you through a lot of small towns with 35 mph speed limits, lots of traffic lights and lots of cops watching.  It was rather annoying, to be honest, to have to go through all of that, but it's whatever.

One little town had this 10% grade with switchbacks going up it.  Narrow road and not enough room if a truck is coming down and one is going up.  I found that out because I was hugging the wall they had on the shoulder while this other truck was coming down - 2 feet into my lane as he passed by, coming very close to hitting my trailer.  SLOW DOWN, was the thought going through my head, why is this driver in such a hurry?  20 mph speed limit, he must have been going 40.  That doesn't sound like much until you appreciate the steepness of the grade and the sharpness of the turns. 

Anyway, I decided to stay at the new Love's again last night, figuring there was no need to spend the night in the truck yard since it was fairly reasonable to assume that there would be no empty trailers coming in early - and that assumption was correct.  When the man that runs the yard finally got there, he said there were no trailers in Matamoros, there would be one  leaving the plant - that is 4 hours south of there.  Lol, they had me thinking that plant was IN Matamoros, now find out it's nowhere near it.  And then, when it does arrive at the border, you don't just sail right through there. There is a line of trucks you have to wait in line for to get inspected to come into the U.S. 

He said this afternoon.  If his 4 hours stuff is correct, I'm guessing 4 pm, which is far later than acceptable to be able to make it back today.  I simply refuse to drive all night long to get back to the yard anymore unless there is a need for the trailer the next morning.  The yard is full of trailers right now.  I'll drive til 1 pm at the latest and then stop for 10 hours and finish out the drive the next morning.  Just for me I won't feel like crap all day the next day after getting home and wanting to do nothing but sleep or lay in bed. 

And the dude that was behind me - he loaded directly after me yesterday - just now pulled in down here.  He got caught up in a rainstorm that had hit the alternate route. I saw that the alt route wasn't free of the rain from the Houston area, I just happened to beat the worst of it. I only had to drive through some sprinkles here and there, he experienced the deluge.  That always slows everything down and it caused him to not be able to make it down here by 3 hours lol.

Anyway, I tried to contact the mechanic but he's unavailable right now.  So I dunno when he's coming back to finish the boat.  If he just isn't coming back, I'll find someone else.  I don't know where the vacuum lines are supposed to go, that's not really anything I would know unless I had taken it apart in the first place.  It's one of those things where I would have taken pics of the lines - there's a lot of vacuum lines on that thing for some reason - so I would remember how they go back on.  Any mechanic project I have ever gotten involved with where there are a lot of lines and electrical coming off I have always taken pics and/or taken notes to ensure  that the whole thing gets put back together correctly. 

The "boy" living at the other house - that's his nickname until he earns a more respectful title - has allegedly found a job and is going to go to an orientation at IHOP this coming week.  His mother is still pandering to him - tho it's in my favor so I'm not turning it down - by co-signing a loan with him to pay the rent next month.  It's whatever to me, as long as the rent is paid. Maria has to "nag" him to do simple things such as clean up after himself when he's done eating or occasionally take the trash out.  It's just a weird situation as far as I'm concerned, but Maria is trying to work with him.  His parents obviously failed him.  She brought this upon herself tho, so I have a little less sympathy than I might have otherwise. The parents did lie to her about his lack of work ethic and lack of motivation to do much of anything beyond playing video games, eating and sleeping.  I did spend a half hour with them in the living room over there the other day attempting to chat with him.  He's not a very sociable person, but at least he wasn't rude.  He's just completely caught up in his own little world.  I'll give him credit for trying to break out of it and get a job, I guess.  We'll see how that goes.

Not much else going on. Gonna end this one.

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