Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Craig was still on the regional team, mainly doing 200-300 miles a day runs in Washington and the Portland area. We took a week's vacation and traveled down to California to visit family and friends at the end of February. Shortly after returning, Craig was told to turn in truck 418 and move into a brand new heavy haul truck.
Boy, talk about a shock. It took us by surprise, and upon getting the keys to the truck and checking out the inside, we began to wish we had our old truck back. This heavy haul had absolutely no storage and was much smaller inside, so much so that is was near impossible to stand and have any room to change clothes. Bottom line, we were miserable in that truck, and with it having the big stacks, it was a beast to back up.
I opted to get off the truck to give Craig more room, but there was never any love lost with him being in that truck and we looked into ways to remedy that situation. He could go back running solo up and down the west coast again, or there was the option to go back to team driving and make a bit more money. Since Craig was just at three years until he could retire, we opted for him to go back to team driving to make the most money that he could and possible retire 6 months prior to his 62nd birthday.
The only mandatory request that Craig had for a team driver was that he be a non-smoker. That proved to be quite the request to fill, and as weeks went by, and no co-driver could be found, Craig grew more and more unhappy driving that heavy haul truck. Thankfully, the boss knew of his unhappiness and decided to put him in a brand new team truck as a solo driver until they could find him a partner.
Let's just say that the new team truck was like the Taj Mahal compared to the heavy haul truck. Extremely roomy, tons of storage, a passenger seat that swivels 360 degrees, a refrigerator, and no stacks to block his view when backing up. Shortly after moving into truck 448, I had the opportunity to check it out, and if he could keep this truck until he retired, without going team, I would be back with him in a flash.
As it stands now, Craig is basically a solo driver awaiting finding that right person to team with, and I am staying at home and enjoying having family come up and visit me. We've found that during the summer, especially in the Central Valley of California, it is just too hot to have Craig sleep on the upper bunk when I'm with him. That's not to say, if a co-driver is not found by November, that you will probably find me back out in the truck with Craig.
As far as updating the blog, since I'm not on the truck, it is difficult to find much to blog about, but I will certainly try to post whenever there is anything of interest to share. Until then, we are counting down the months (32) until Craig can finally hang up his CDL and fully retire here at home with me.