Friday, March 25, 2011

Adventures in a Transport Truck - Tuesday

(We are in a hotel today and I am supposed to be sleeping . . . but I'm waiting to hear news about my grandson, Austin, who has been in a London hospital since YESTERDAY waiting for an operating room and a bed so they can repair his broken arm . . . so I thought I'd share more of my adventures in a transport truck to keep myself busy.)

We pulled into the Ottawa yard before the sun was up. Oh my goodness, the yard is tiny and crowded and mushy and muddy and still has snow. And a couple of walloping big pot holes which we found . . . the hard way. Despite his fatigue and despite the “assistance” he received, Hal still managed to dock the trailer successfully. There was evidence all over the yard from drivers who were a little less successful in this exercise. There is a lot of damaged fencing. I’m sure the size of the yard isn’t a big deal for smaller trailers and trucks that don’t have sleepers which I believe is what they mostly get (at least in my short experience). But when you have a sleeper cab and a 53’ trailer this is not simple.

Once the trailer was docked, we unhitched our truck and parked in a back corner of the yard for some breakfast and very long overdue sleep. Hal pulled down the second bunk and that is when we found out there was no mattress. Hal tried to sleep in the top bunk with his sleeping bag but it wasn’t long before he joined me in the bottom bunk. This may sound romantic but it wasn’t. We were both so exhausted but with being so crowded every time one of us moved it woke the other up. It was not a good sleep at all. After a couple of hours I got up and sat in the front of the cab so Hal could sleep. But he didn’t get near enough sleep. He reassured me this is normal for the first day on the road and that by the next day he would be back in a successful sleep schedule.

When Hal woke up we drove to a nearby Tim Horton’s . I cannot even begin to tell you how rough driving in a transport truck can be when there is no trailer attached. I snugged up my seat belt and held on for dear life. When we returned to the yard our load for Toronto was ready. I made each of us a tray full of finger food – the chicken legs, pickles, eggs, and veggies – since we didn’t have time to eat. We hooked up to our trailer and off we went, first to Stittsville and then on to Mississauga.

When we arrived at the customer’s in Stittsville I became a “bit” concerned when I saw the driveway was quite narrow with deep ditches on each side. It didn’t seem to bother Hal so what could I do but pretend it didn’t bother me either? Hal did get a little cranky when he saw a tractor trailer parked in the middle of the yard and no driver in sight and he was a little smug when he managed to manoeuvre our truck and trailer into the dock on the first try, narrowly missing the other truck and trailer in the road. We were hoping for a little wait time when we pulled into the Toronto yard, but Hal’s next Ottawa load was ready. So off we went again, dropping our Ottawa trailer and picking up our new load, repeating all the steps I mentioned earlier and we were on the road again.

Here are some of the ways I entertained myself today: