Small Town Mountain Boy has Turned Gypsy

Hello everyone, it has been a very long time since I posted here. I thank you all for coming around to check on me and leaving such wonderful comments. (Except all the spam there seems to be.)

I am doing fine, and finally have started blogging again. However I am now on WordPress. You can find Me at Wandering Gypsy Spirit . I will leave my blogs up here on blogger, perhaps to revisit at some point.

I do need to get around and visit everyone, bear with me, I will get there sooner later.

Life by Three Clocks

Image0077Life on the road, is so very freeing, as long as you follow a few simple rules.  I live my life by three clocks, 11, 14, and 70 hours have become the most important hours of my meager existence.  I can only drive for 11 hours each day, with out a 10 hour consecutive break. I can only be on duty and driving, for a total of 14 consecutive hours each day. And I can only work a total of 70 duty hours in 8 days.  Sound confusing, it’s not really.  If you can drive for 8 1/2 to 9 hours each day, you never run out of time, because at the end of the 8 days, you start getting the hours from day 1 back at midnight.  So you see on day 9 you’re getting the time from day 1 back, day 10 you get day 2 and so on.  That way you can run nearly continuously without having to do a reset.

Now if you run out of duty hours on the 70 hour clock, there is a little thing called a 34 hour reset.  If I remain off duty or in the sleep berth for 34 consecutive hours, it resets all my time.  The problem with a 34 hour reset is… your setting, not running, and hence not making any money.  It’s always best to manage the hours instead of letting the hours manage you.  Easy to say, but not that easy to accomplish.  I did well while I had students on the truck, because running as a team you can spread out the drive time.  As a solo, it can be a little more difficult, especially when the load delivery time is fairly pressing.

I have to admit, I like running solo far more than being a trainer.  It’s my nature you see, I’m just a lone wolf, and prefer to be alone.  Nothing but my own thoughts, and a little music to keep me company.  Of course there is the traffic around me, but there is no changing that.  I’m enjoying my time as solo for a little while, kind of taking a breather from being cooped up in the truck with a stranger for a little while. 

Being a trainer is a little strange for me.  Imagine that you just got your dream car, say a Corvette.  Now meet a random person on the street, not knowing if they can even drive, and toss them the keys.  OH, you also have to get in the passenger seat and ride with them!  To say the least, it can be a little nerve wracking.  I was lucky, my first two students were not all that bad.  Other than a few personal quirks, that had nothing at all to do with driving, we got along just fine.  They helped me run the extra miles, and make some money.  After a month and a half though, I had to take a breather.

I’ve been running solo for two weeks now.  I even managed to get a load through Fort Worth with enough time I could take a 34 hour reset at home.  I’ve enjoyed it to be sure, but I will have to pick up another student soon so I can make the miles.  Right now I am a phase 2 trainer, which means that I am to teach them the business end of the job.  It's all about fuel mileage, maintenance, paperwork and managing hours.  Once you get that down, everything else falls into place.  In theory, the students are supposed to know how to drive.  After I complete 6 months with no accidents, I can become a phase 1 trainer, where I would be teaching them how to drive.  I actually think that will be more fun.

Until then, I just keep on rolling, living my life by three clocks.

A Delayed; not by choice; Post

Image0079I must apologize, the lack of posts seem to have worried a few people.  I have been having problems with the WYFI on my laptop, or to be more accurate, the WYFI available at the truck stops.  It’s sad really, that you have to pay for WYFI service that is of such poor quality you can hardly remain online for more than 10 minutes at a time.  Luckily, I now have a broadband connection VIA air card.   If all goes well, you can expect a few more frequent posts from the tumbleweed express.

To give you an idea of what I have been doing for the last month and a half or more, let me share my odometer reading.  I acquired the truck on December 22, and it had 1,400 miles on it at the time.  As of the time of this post, I have 38,126 miles on the blue beauty.  To say the least, I have been rolling along quite well.  In the past few months, I have been in every one of the lower 48 states except Washington, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Delaware, and Rohde Island.  A few of them I seem to be spending a lot of time in, or at least driving through. 

I survived the last batch of severe winter storms with no trouble, and I was right in the middle of them.  Apparently, I am suited to the I 80 corridor, and they seem to like sending me to New York of all places.  I feel sorry for those of you who have to drive the George Washington bridge on a daily basis.  I can’t think of any other road in such a pitiful state of disrepair.  I do believe a person could lose one of these new sub compact cars in the pot holes on that stretch of road. 

I’ll post a few more things later in the week, for right now, I need a little sleep, so I’ll save the good stuff for when I have a clear head.


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