Thursday, January 21, 2010

In ATL Now, Headed to Miami Tonight, then Orlando and Finally Vegas

We arrived here in Atlanta last night about 2200. We were pretty tired so we were glad not to get a dispatch out right away. We went to bed, got a good nights sleep and now we are raring to go.

It was about 0900 when we took a call from dispatch asking if we could pull a load out of the Atlanta airport to the airport in Miami. Neither of us really like going to Miami, so after some discussion, I called dispatch and started cutting deals. We know that there is a load out of Orlando going to Vegas on Saturday morning and we really like Vegas.

After some haggling, the deal was cut and we would load at the Atlanta airport this evening with a customer load going to Miami airport and deliver in the morning. From there, we will pull our empty trailer back north to Orlando, (actually, we'll go to the house about 60 miles from Orlando) and then pick a load up in Orlando on Saturday going to Las Vegas.

Our load from Atlanta should be ready at about 1600 and we will have to go to the airport to get loaded, that will be a live load here and unload in Miami. We are to deliver in Miami by 0900.

The load in Orlando won't be ready until sometime Saturday afternoon. We will go to the house for the rest of the day Friday and Saturday morning.We will then head to Orlando to get the load going to Vegas. We are to deliver in Vegas on Tuesday. We have plenty of time to get there so it will be a pretty easy trip. my guess is that we will get there as quickly a legally possible and see what they have for us to do at that point.

I have included a map of our route from here in Atlanta to Miami then to Orlando and finally to Vegas. The map is below. I will provide updates here with fuel stops as we travel.

View Larger Map

In God I Trust
Have a Great Day and a Better Tomorrow

Monday, January 18, 2010

01/18/10 Update, In Los Angeles Leaving for Atlanta in the Morning

We arrived in Los Angeles at about 1445 on Wednesday, the 13th. We didn't have a dispatch yet but it wasn't long before we took a call and we were dispatched to Dallas. The load was to be ready at 0600 and we need to be ready when the trailer is loaded. We decided to eat dinner and go to bead early to get plenty of rest so that we could leave upon notification of the load being ready.

Awakened at about 0445, I jumped up, brushed my teeth, washed my face, slid into a clean shirt and jeans and headed for the dispatch office. Dispatch told me it was a haz-mat load and had to be placarded. I also noticed that it was a pretty darned heavy load compared to what we normally have and what I like to have...32000#.

I signed the paperwork, left the office and had Tina look up the haz-mat information while I was hooking to the loaded trailer. Come to find out, the "haz-mat" part of the load consisted 32 lithium batteries, totaling about 32# and mounted inside a dental instrument. The load did not need placards because the package was placarded and the total haz mat weight was only 32#.

After getting hooked up and performing my pre-trip inspection and updating our logbooks, we were off to DFW. We decided to travel I-10 east to I-20 into Weatherford and then around the 820 loop to 121/114 to the terminal. We could have run I-40 to Amarillo then 287 down into Fort Worth and saved about 9 miles but the fuel is always cheaper and the mountain pulls are far less on I-10. I opted for cheap fuel and less mountains.

We stopped in Phoenix and fueled at the Flying J travel Plaza at about 1130am. From there we traveled on to DFW and arrived at the terminal at about 0545.

Again, with no immediate dispatch looming, it was off to bed for a good nap. We got up at about 0930 and went for breakfast at our favorite local Cracker Barrel. After Breakfast it was back to the terminal and relaxing. I had taken a call at about 0800 and we had a dispatch back to LAX. The load wasn't to be ready until about 0400 though. We had a great day kicking back and just enjoying the company of one another, Not really talking alot, just knowing that each of us were there if we cared to talk.

We thought we'd go to bed at about 2200 after the movie we were watch had ended. I got tired though, and worried that the load might be an hour or so early so we shut the movie off at about 2115 and went to bed. The call came at 2315 that the load was ready and had to move right away. 5 hours early, not good.

Here we go, I got up, cleaned up, hooked up and began truckin' it up. We had to fuel in Tye Texas, so I stopped there at about 0230 and filled up with fuel. We took of again and stopped in Phoenix, AZ for one last top off of fuel. We arrived in LAX at 0200 and took a long leisurely nap. That was one tough trip. I can't go into detail about who drove when and for how long, due to D.O.T. log regulations and rules, but suffice to say, a very tough trip.

We have been here in the LAX terminal since early Sunday morning now and are headed to Atlanta in the morning. We spent yesterday listening to our Cowboy Church on Willies Place, XM channel 13, and Bill Mack's Sunday Social on the same channel, watching it rain and visiting with family and friends via social media sources and telephone. Today it has rained again, all day. We have spent the entire day doing nothing but typing, talking and texting.

Our load for Atlanta is to be ready by about 0800. We will be running across I-10 to I-20 again, right into Atlanta and then 285 down to the terminal near the airport. We'll have to stop for fuel in Phoenix again and then probably in Shreveport LA or Jackson MS, wherever the fuel is least expensive. We should be in Atlanta by about 2100 on Wednesday if the load is ready on time out of LAX.

I will update tomorrow, sometime after our departure.

In God I Trust
Have a Great Day and a Better Tomorrow

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Back to work, Well, 4 Days Ago I Mean.

Well, it's a new year, a new beginning, for many things in many of our lives, and Prayerfully, a whole lot of newly awakened Americans, and some who may even remove the liberal chains and blinders placed by the Democrats and many of the left leaning Republicans over the last century or more.

Tina and I had a great vacation. We had planned on taking off on the 19th of December but when we got close to home on the 16th, it was going to be near impossible for dispatch to get us to leave Florida again. We ended up at home on the morning of the 17th and came back to work on the 9th of January.

We left Florida, in the car this time, on the morning of the 19th and headed for Southern Illinois, where most of both our families live. We spent about a week and a half there visiting with, and actually getting some quality time with friends and family. I was able to visit, at length, with a pair of twins, with whom I attended high school. You know you have a true friendship when you can walk into someones house and pick up right where you left off 20 years ago. Though I have talked to these two a couple times since I left Illinois, it can't have been more than 3-4 times in 22 years and nothing has changed...except my hair line and waist size, but I digress.

I was also able to spend some time with another very close friend of mine with whom I used to work and who married, what I would guess, is probably my only other true friend in this world. They are no longer together, but we remain best friends all the same. I would just like to say thanks to all of them for taking time from their busy holiday and work schedules and spending, with me, what time was available.

I was also able to spend some fantastic time with my mother, who is undoubtedly the greatest mother of all time. Though we don't see eye to eye, politically that is, we both understand that we do still live in America and she has the right to be wrong. I spent a few hours with a younger brother at his house and then 1 1/2 days with my fantastic, older, much older, sister. My sister is running for a Precinct Committeeman seat in Illinois, Madison County, Jarvis Precinct #1. To say we had a good visit would be to short change the quality of the time we had together.

Tina was with her family most of the time. Since we are away from our families all year,or most of the year, and we are together all the time we are away from them, suffice to say that separate vacations can be a good thing at times, and yesm that feeling is mutual. HaHa

From there, we arrived back at our water damaged, torn apart for repairs, humble abode, early on the morning of the 31st. We bought a couple of movies and stayed in for to ring in the New Year.

On Saturday it was back to work, well at home anyway. I had a lot of work to do to the truck. I had to replace all 6 shocks, change the oil and filters, do a grease job of the chassis, check and adjust air pressure in the tires, replace a broken link rod for the over-inflate valve on the rear suspension. I had to remove the waste tank and box and install a vent and a flush valve so that the tank would drain and clean out properly, I had to repair a water leak near the water pump for the sink and shower, I repaired several small air leaks, of which 1 still alludes my endeavor. there was a lot of work to do and relatively little time to get it finished. The challenge was there and the mission was accomplished...just in time to go for a great steak before we left the house to head to Orlando and load for Dallas.

We were supposed to load for Las Vegas out of Orlando but the load for Vegas was freight light so we were redirected to the DFW terminal. We left Orlando at about 0400 EDT on the 9th and arrived in Irving at about 2300 the same day. Before we arrived at the DFW terminal, we were asked leave for Chicago at about midnight. We accepted the load and it was ready shortly after we arrived in Irving. After fueling and checking the truck over, we hooked the loaded trailer and performed the required pre-trip inspection and were off for the frozen tundra of Northern Illinois.

We traveled up U.S. 75 to U.s 69 then accessed I-44 east to St Louis where we got onto I-55 north. We had planned to stop in Springfield Illinois for a quick visit with the 912 group there but were asked to hustle to Chicago and take a load to Paw Paw, MI to relay with another truck from Detroit and return to Chicago with his empty trailer. No time to stop. We arrived in Chicago about 1615 EDT on Sunday afternoon and 10 minutes later the load for Paw Paw canceled. Good thing actually though. The water was frozen to the shower and I had a broken water line connector that had to be fixed. The temperature was down to -5 degrees at one point and was only 2 degrees in Chicago when we got there so I understand the freeze.

I used a blow dryer, shshshshshshshsh, don't tell Tina, to thaw the line and had a connector to patch the broken water line. We decided to leave the water dripping overnight so that I could stay warm the next day and not have to be in the cold weather working on frozen water lines.

since the water lines were okay, I decided to be in the cold anyway and took about a 2.25 mile walk, 5 times around the terminal, in the 18 degree weather. I figured we were in a warming faze, I mean really, from -5 to +18, so what the heck, get some exercise. Global warming my butt. I busted my rump, twice, on Al Gore's Glacial thaw.

We were dispatched to Los Angeles from Chicago but the LAX load wasn't to be ready until 0200 on the 12th(today). Our load was actually ready about 0130 and we left about 0200. We were routed down to I-40 west out of Chicago to LAX to keep us out of any real chance of terrible, load delaying weather. We again traveled down I-55 south to St Louis and now we are on I-44 in Missouri. We are currently near Springfield, Mo. We will run I-44 west to Oklahoma City, OK then I-40 to Barstow, CA and I-15 south to the L.A. area. We should be at the LAX terminal by about 1500 EDT on Wednesday. At this point we have no dispatch out of LAX.

Hey, don't forget Tina's Scream-n-Fling Dolls. Just in time for a new political year and changing of the guard. They are available now at Conservabid.com at the bargain price of $6.95 as an introductory offer and that even includes shipping to the continental United States of America. Check out the video.

For those of you that would rather have something other than a doll, check out our T-shirts, mugs, mouse pads, etc. at the links below.We have launched into a couple of apparel stores so that everyone can show their support of the 912 Truck. Click here to show your support, or go to www.printfection.com/912truck. For those of you that would rather have a hat or mug we have another outlet at cafepress.com/912 Truck. You can also use any of the donate buttons on this page to make a contribution directly to our endeavor to Waking up America.
Thanks for your support.

In God I Trust
Have a Great Day and a Better Tomorrow