Thursday, November 14, 2019

Since the other driver was going to preload the trailer this morning, I took my leisurely good time getting to work.  The other driver texted me when he was leaving the plant, I knew he would beat me to the yard and that didn't concern me.  I was going to leave early enough to beat Houston rush hour and make it down there with no known issues.

So, after firing the truck up, I went into the office to do my paperwork.  After lots of discussions about different things with both my manager and the mechanic,  I went back out to depart hence for thither yonder lands.  I saw a huge pool of - whatever - in front of the truck.  I didn't know what it was, but it wasn't water.  I thought it my be DEF, but wasn't sure. It wasn't diesel fuel, oil, hydraulic fluid or coolant.  
I got the mechanic out there.  Oh, it's just a little leak.  Well do you have the parts?  No, I'll have to order them. Well what am I supposed to do? Drive it! It's only going to leak when it's trying to regen.  NOT, I thought in my mind, this pool of fluid didn't get there because it was trying to regen.  But I said fine and figured to have to stop for DEF a few times?  Whatever the case, I got back in the truck and saw a giant warning notice on the dash screen that said power was being reduced because of a problem with the SRC system. DEF - a system to clean the exhaust.  

I got under the truck and the fluid was pouring out of it now, not just a minor leak.  I knew the mechanic was wrong in his assessment, I should have just left, driven down the road and had to have it fixed with breakdown pay.  He said take it, I didn't cause' I knew better.  But, thinking about it now?  I should have thought beyond my own limitations, but I have good reasons for those limits. I have never been paid for breakdown pay before this company in my entire trucking life, it just didn't cross my mind. The mechanic said take it, I should have taken it! I could have gotten far enough down the road - a couple hundred miles anyway - and then be sitting  there for probably at least 2 days waiting for it to get fixed.

I know it would have taken time to get it fixed because the mechanic made 15 phone calls looking for a new replacement line.  And I ended up driving 90 miles one way to get the part.  Well I didn't have to, they asked me if I wanted to? Sure, why not? Not like it was free for the company, I get paid for doing that stuff and that problem was not caused by me, that was a mechanical issue that was not driver caused. 
Anyway, I drove to Lufkin, got the part, got the part, got within 25 miles and the mechanic calls me.  Uhh, do you want to leave today with it?  I thought but didn't say, yes that's my intention but I guessed immediately that he didn't want to fix it today.  It was almost 3:00 pm and he alluded to a person situation he needed to tend to and asked me for my permission to please let him just come in early am to fix it.  Yup, he had to ask me. It's a live load, the trailer is full, the load should have been down there today, if the driver wants to take it, that takes precedence over their personal lives.  I know, sounds horrendous, but that's the way this business works. Then he said he talked to the manager, who left it up to me. 

I told him the load wasn't making it there today- I  am not driving til' 3 am to deliver this load, even if I did, they wouldn't come to get it until around noon tomorrow - but I was planning on taking it to get south of Houston at least.  However, since you say you'd come in early (5 am) to fix it, Houston won't be an issue, so yes, I'm good with that.  I really don't want to mess with people's personal lives, if they need to do something, unless there is valid reasoning to say no, it's fine by me. 


It is now Thursday morning, rather early.  Very glad I decided to just go home yesterday and let the mechanic deal with it this morning.  I got a very good night's sleep, well rested, won't have any fatigue issues driving to Brownsville today.  My pay statement came in this morning as well - a very lovely paycheck even after all the federal deductions and 401k and such.  I'm putting aside at least $500 for spending money for upcoming trip next month.  I want to take my son and his lovely wife Christmas shopping.  Actually, it's for his wife, he always wants gift cards for the movie theater. I usually dump $100 on one from a local theater chain and call it good. 

Meanwhile, the dispute with the boy's parents continues.  They want the rent back for the time that this month "left over".  Sorry, it doesn't work that way, as I told them in return text, but I will give them whatever money I receive if someone does, indeed, rent the room before the end of the month. The "man" fired a very long text back at me, calling me stupid names, attempting to make himself look as tho he is taking the high ground.

My text back to him was the fact that they flat lied to us about the boy, didn't give us any pertinent and highly relevant info about him, and now I just found out in the "man's" latest text the boy has Autism.  We certainly knew NOTHING about THAT. Basically, they couldn't deal with him, so they attempted to dump him out on society without letting anyone know that he has that kind of condition.  WE are NOT set up to deal with a person with that condition.  I have basic knowledge of that disease, I have  no professional credentials or innate knowledge on how to deal with a person with autism.  I have much more sympathy for the boy  now, but, I would have never taken him in if we had known this.  A person with autism needs professional care, or at least people that understand it and know how to deal with it.  I gave them a very long dosage of their own medicine and ended my last text with the statement to not contact me again, but, if anyone rents the room before the end of the month, I will forward the proceeds to them.  If they continue on with their ranting, I will inform them that I am blocking them and have nice lives. 

Unbelievable that they didn't tell us about that little smidgen of information . Absolutely unreal. I knew he had behavioral problems - that became quite evident - I didn't know it was caused by a mental disease.  Perhaps they told Maria about his Autism, I don't know, I just texted her as well and asked about that. That was quite the surprising revelation. 

Whatever the case, I am awaiting a reply from the mechanic.  When do you think the truck will be ready to go?  He said yesterday he had to replace the line and he would have to hook up his computer to the truck to clear the problem from the truck's system and reboot it.  I don't think any of that will take much time to complete, at the same time, who knows if he will run into issues trying to get it going?  He's a good mechanic, he knows what he's doing, I do believe that I should be able to leave relatively early this morning, hence getting up early and getting prepared for the work day.

Yup, the truck will be done in the next 40 minutes or so.

I'm outta here.


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