Tuesday, August 3, 2010

3 AUGUST 2008

Started our day at our company yard in Dallas, TX. When you drive for a big company, they usually have yards all over and terminals. Yards are basically what they sound like, big open lots to hold empty and loaded trailers. It's one of the places you can go to pick up a loaded trailer and switch it out with your empty. We picked up a loaded trailer #4275581 of Oxallic Acid (non-hazardous) headed for Arkansas, weighing over 40,000 lbs (trailer weight included, tractor excluded). Maximum weight for a loaded tractor trailer combination is 80,000 lbs. Stopped at the seediest truck stop we've been to called 'Truckers Paradise' in Houston. Perhaps a paradise for some, but sketchier than ever! Of course our truck at the time, an old Peterbilt wouldn't start and kept shutting off. So we're broken down, a humid August day in Texas, stuck in a truck that won't turn on at one of the worst truck stops in the country. We waited about an hour dripping in our truck while TA's (truck stop chain) Road Squad (similar to Best Buy's Geek Squad but way cooler) came to the rescue. Fifteen minutes after their arrival, they tell us we need to get towed. Back and forth on the phone with our company, we're told we need to spend the night until they can get a tow truck over. With luck our truck turned back on, so at least we had A/C for the night, but we dared not to drive it fully loaded.

Not much to do at a truck stop when you're stuck there other than wait, so we turned the CB on to listen to the local entertainment for the night. Lot lizards (truck stop prostitutes aka sleeper leapers) heaven. There was a 4-wheeler (trucker talk for car) driving around, pimp driving, lot lizard in the passenger side on the CB selling everything you can imagine - bootleg DVDs, porno, batteries, and a 2-for-1 special - one 24 yr old and one 29 yr old. Nuts! Meanwhile, another driver broke out his grill and started to barbecue in the back of the lot inviting everyone over. Lot lizards everywhere, pimps going wild, truckers looking restless,...you know when you're at a bad truck stop when there aren't many company trucks around and most of the other trucks around you look all beat up..... that's pretty much the situation we were in. Had enough, turned our ears (cb) off and hoped nobody knocked on our door at night.

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