Recent travels and trevails

After my QualCOMM unit was repaired I was given a load from Omaha down to Russellville, Arkansas. My hours allowed me to drive to Lamar, Missouri before shutting down and I took advantage of shopping at the nice Super Wal-Mart there with nice truck parking before going to bed.

The next day got me to Russellville where I had a preplanned load leaving from the same place I delivered to. Said load was 43,000 pounds according to the documentation which was almost immediately proven false when scaling revealed my truck was over 81,500 pounds gross. This would mean at least 47,000 pounds in the box. I’ve never understood how a shipper moving their own boxed goods could not know the actual weight of their cargo to the decimal place.

Back to the shipper for a rework and 1,700 pounds were taken off in under three hours, a record. I very carefully scaled out and set my axles properly then headed down the road, ending in West Memphis, Arkansas for the night.

Up early Friday morning and through Memphis before traffic got shitty, then south along highway 78 (“Future I-22 corridor” according to the signs). Survived Birmingham, Alabama and arrived on the west side of Atlanta mid afternoon.

Somehow our folks didn’t have the load marked as a drop and hook so the receiver wanted me to park elsewhere for a few hours before returning for a live unload. Oh hell no. A quick message over the QualCOMM and our people and there people did whatever these people do and I was allowed to drop off the full in a door and take out an empty. I happen to know of a warehouse a mile or so away that has been closed for some time and parked there for the night.

Up and at them early again (0400 local time) on a preplan from Tunnel Hill, Georgia to the Chicago area. Load picked up any time after 0300 and delivers noon the following day. I arrive around 0600 local to find there is no such load any more, though there is an identical load set to head out the following morning for the same location. Back and forth with our company’s inside broker department until it is eventually revealed that the shipper claimed we didn’t have a trailer there when they needed it so they put it on a different company’s trailer and let them have it. Surprising, given the fact there was an empty HB trailer there when I arrived, but I’m just a driver.

I’m told to stick around for the day and pick up the new load heading out Sunday morning for a first-thing Monday delivery up in Chicago. The princely sum of $75 is deposited into my account for layover, an amount I note doesn’t even cover my fixed expenses on a daily basis. The rest of the day is whiled away playing the StarCraft II Beta, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, Runes of Magic and getting caught up on various Hulu shows.

Yesterday morning I bugged out early towards Nashville, Tennessee where I fueled up. The shorter interstate route to Chicago was to continue north along I-65 through Louisville, Kentucky and Indianapolis, Indiana but I instead chose to add 30 miles of Out-of-Route heading west along I-24 into Illinois then north on I-57. No big cities to go through and fairly flat terrain, resulting in 8.1 MPG for the trip.

I finished yesterday in Monee, Illinois, just 13 miles from the consignee.