Goodaye all. It would take me three pages to fully detail this week. Some downs, some ups and like much in the life of an interstate driver, most of it came either unannounced, or by the actions of others. Nothing much different to all peoples lives true, we all get hit by surprise, with the good and the bad. Some win more, some suffer more and we all hope that those who suffer, have someone to share their pain and or to help them through it.
I will give you the dot point version, so as not to bore you all and certainly after the last couple of weeks, I don’t want you to think I am getting a bit down at heel.
- The engine in the K200 finally had enough of cracked rings, (they have been cracked for sometime, but it still went well and there were others in the fleet worse off than me, though mine was next in the que). It told me so with some warnings, but did not quite make it waiting for it’s turn. Cab up and down 3 times, covered in oil along with the exhaust, not recommended for either. Towed home, boy do truck towies have some things to fix. How long it is off the road will be decided next week.
- My children, I love them all and each is different and in this job, you are never there for them as a father should be. Yes you can ring them, you can tell them you love them, but you are too often, far away when they need you. That will not explain fully, but it is another weight on my mind. How can I do enough for them?
- Into another truck, short of drivers, change some gear over, not enough as I have mostly lived in the K200, 5 nights or more a week for over 6 years now. I have put too much of my life not only into the TIV, but spent too much of it in there. But we must earn a quid. This truck needed some TLC, one view says the driver did not get fixed what he wanted, another says he simply would not write it down or push hard enough. Working on getting it sorted, nothing serious, or I would not be driving it, but little things that either make my job harder, or less enjoyable.
- Go to Sydney, do two DC drops, each its own challenge, then find I am off to Melbourne direct, not home via Dubbo as originally told. Things change, I accept that, but a little notice or the effort to tell me, instead of me chasing to find out will make a big difference in my life on the road. Road works at loading point, “Choose Alternate Route” sign at the turn off in a b-double, looks OK, bugger that, round the corner, what clown said a semi could not get in? Told open 24 hours, on site, not inducted , “Go back” the man said, then “Only joking if your first time here”. Funny heh?
- Loading, hurry up we go home at 5.30PM, now 5 and another truck in front. Told 24 hours, “Not this part of the plant”. Loading me in his hurry to get home, lucky bugger, load of recycling on, he’s gone. Love the smell, too late to lift boards or floors, mmmmm.
- Ah well, time now to catch up on sleep and a shower, will ring my mate Stephen. How about meeting me for some “TRUCK That” filming on the Hume instead of coming to Dubbo next week. Good idea. We planned, then I spent an hour adjusting headlights, tea, shower at Marulan and to Gundagai to bed. Stephen arrives, filming all good and we decide to do “TRUCK That for RVers” to follow on from the good comments on the sharing rest areas video. Walk past a van, “No sign for the UHF I comment”, “Yes we do he says” and we chat. I ask would he like to be in a video to help others and yes he will. Thanks Steven and Bev, though Bev watched. Let us hope it will help make the roads safer in the long run. Watch this space.
- No keys for depot, try and sort to get in, so not locked outside for whole week-end. Thanks Katie and Anthony for your help. Will unload Monday, what time slot I was asked. What time slot? No one said. Check back copy of paperwork, due 11AM SATURDAY! Yeh right, that was going to happen, not. Help me and tell me such things and I will do my best. Don’t and I can’t. Many calls and numbers tried, no phone to receiving, will go and try my luck. Yes will unload me, thanks. I’ll start said forkie, then shiftchange and they will finish you, never saw him again.
- Phone calls, to Vicroads, fix the hole (again) just up the hill from Glenrowan please.
- ARRB starting on new National Guidelines for truck rest areas. Good and you will be able to contribute soon.
- NTC, excellent the guideline review is under way, but there is a much bigger problem, not enough rest areas. My new years program, make a lot of noise and have started working on the plan.
- Have to make a list for the K200 for all the little jobs while off the road and work on a week off.
- There were other bits and pieces, none of major issue yet.
- Wash the trailers inside from end to end to get most of the smell out. Love my job.
- About to run out of clothes, no frig, mine died and still tied in K200, so no way to carry much, working on another, anyone got a spare for a couple of weeks?
- Well that will do for now, time for a shower, though it has just stared to piss down outside. Missing my Icepack and my bed, in the 200 of course. Loading bulk DG tomorrow and back on the road again. I think there could be a song there. Safe Travelling, Rod Hannifey.