Thursday, August 8, 2019

Not too bad of a trip. And great money.  Last one I did - this same trip - was worth almost $1,300.  It's a lot better money than these little short trips.

That trip up to El Dorado - for all it entails - is only worth $312 and that's before taxes.  Okay, it's not so bad because it truly is a day trip.  But as things have been going lately, 2 4-day trips are better than all of these little nonsense trips taking up more time than they are worth and working a lot  of hours for low pay - well low pay compared to other runs.

I'm ready for a Brownsville run, it's been a bit since I've been on one. 

This trip went identical to last one, which is amazing because things have to really run in rhythm to make that happen. Yesterday was another 688 miles - the same as last time, I actually made it back to the same Loves in Palestine, AR as I did last time. That's a lot of miles for a truck that only goes 65 mph.

My only gripe on this trip was finding a knocked-off mud flap on the trailer. Whoever was responsible for that didn't bother to have it fixed, neither did they report it.

They just dumped the broken off flap in the cabinet in the back of the trailer and apparently decided to dump the problem on someone else.  That's really total bs.  Yup, I said something to my manager today about it.  There is no way a professional driver should just be dumping that kind of s*** onto someone else. All he/she had to do was report it when they got back. In reality, they should have fixed it while on the road.

But I can guess what happened. They backed into a parking spot somewhere, didn't stop before the tires hit the curb, the mud flap got caught between the tires and the curb and - rips right off of there. They may have some fear  of getting into trouble or something, but mud flaps are cheap and it happens.  The problem  is if you are caught by a Trooper driving down the road like that, they will write you up for it and then it goes on your CSA record.  It also goes on the company's CSA record.  That becomes an issue if you get written up for something as easily avoidable for a fixit ticket as a mud flap. 

Whatever the case, the mechanic wasn't there on Friday - he should have been but he had run out of hours and the company isn't doing OT right now - and when I tried to get a hold of him for authority to get it repaired somewhere, he wasn't responding.  I ended up driving the entire trip with that mudflap missing.  The caveat is that these trailers, in the rear, are very low to the ground.  So low mudflaps are almost irrelevant.  Not like a typical truck on the rear. I'm just saying it doesn't really kick rocks back out of it - they end up hitting the chassis instead. 

The last write-up for a CSA infraction I got was while driving for Ferguson in Arizona.  I had 7 small sticks of pipe on the rear of the trailer - with 4 straps on it - far more strappage than needed for that small amount of pipe, but they said I needed 5 on it regardless.  There was approximately 1,600 pounds of pipe, the 4 straps were rated, combined, to hold 22,000 pounds.  I called bs on that one, but there was nothing I could do. The point being, however, I haven't had any write ups for along, long time and those points back in AZ are undoubtedly off my record right now, I should have a perfect CSA record at this point.

I'm getting much better about not eating out on these long trips.  I take enough food to fill my gut all 4 days.  I only ate out once, and that was breakfast at a cafe I was parked at overnight.  Biggles Cafe near Centralia, Illinois.  Nice people, decent food, absolutely horrible parking lot. Covered with huge craters, it's actually dangerous to drive a truck through there, especially a tanker.  But once I got back there I had no choice but to continue.  They said they are planning on redoing the entire lot soon.  Good, because on the Stryker trip, I could do that every time.  It's as far as I can go on the first day heading north before I run out of hours.  And nobody likes to park there because of that parking lot. 

I mean, on the Truckers Path app there are endless complaints on reviews about it. 
But the waitresses are sweet as can be.  Just very nice people, makes you happy you went in there.  I don't expect I'll get another Stryker, Ohio run anytime soon, just the way that "luck of the draw" stuff works, I was shocked to get 2 in a row.  I'm actually ready for a 2 day trip.  But not a s***** one, a Brownsville style trip.  I don't have enough hours for another 3 or 4 day trip, so if she does send me anywhere tomorrow, it's going to have to be a shorter one.

Oh, anyway, my truck refrigerator can only hold so much food. So I would rather put in meat/dinners and heavier foods than putting breakfast foods in there.  I am finding that I am not as hungry as I used to be anyway.  Not much energy output driving a truck. The biggest thing is just trying to stay awake! 

I can also say that I have all but gotten over the homesickness that I experienced when I first started this job.  I was in pretty bad shape for a while there.  This 4 day trip was basically nothing. I get a bit "anxious" I guess is the word, the last day on a trip when I'm only a few hundred miles out and anticipating getting home and having my dogs with me.  That's pretty natural, I think. 

I'm waiting for my new teeth to show up to the dentist.  2 lower fronts and the botched front upper that was too short when it arrived.  The dentist knew it was too short before he even put it on there, but checked it anyway.  I'm paying far too much money for that kind of irregularity. 

Short trip, got that over with. I no more than got back to the yard and left for home when I got a text from yet the newest version of a di...