Wednesday, January 14, 2009

"Go To California -- Just Kidding!" :--}

Just click your heels three times.” Well. We are not in Davenport any longer. We are in our own truck. And it appears to be running.

When I last wrote, we were waiting on the Freightliner shop in Davenport to fix what they didn't fix at the Schneider maintenance shop in Gary, Indiana, when the truck was there for a week.

Monday afternoon, we called and they told us it was ready. So we pack up all our stuff, and Terry takes the hotel shuttle to pick up the truck, only 5 miles away. A while later, he arrived, and told me that the truck was doing exactly the same thing it had been doing before, and he didn't think he was even going to make it to the hotel.

So, right back he goes. We unpack our stuff, and settle in to wait some more.

Finally, yesterday afternoon, we called, and they told us they had replaced a range modulator on the actual transmission (this was a mechanical problem and not just some kind of electronic computer problem like everyone thought but Terry and me). Sure enough, we picked up the truck last night, and it's been running well since then.

Here. Take this load to California.” “Ah, just kidding!” So, we pick up our truck in Davenport, Iowa, last night, check out of the hotel, and we are ready to go. We let Schneider know we are ready to actually do some driving.

It took a couple of hours, but finally the load came through. We were to go over to Normal, Illinois, and pick up a load going to California, but it wasn't going to be ready until this afternoon at 3:00 pm. So Terry drove until we stopped about 20 miles away from the place, where we parked for the night.

It was snowing and the temperatures were cold enough to make me glad we were on our way to Otay, California. Our strategy was to call this morning to see if the load might be ready earlier than 3:00 pm.

So, about 7:30 this morning, I called them.

Could we pick up the load early? Would it be ready before 3:00 pm?

Well, normally you could. But there isn't enough freight for a load on this order, so we are cancelling the load.”

Cancelling the load going to California. You're sure?”

Oh yes. Quite sure.”

Thank you.”

All dressed up with nowhere to go. So now our truck is running again, but we have no load.

So we wait. And wait.

Terry wakes up sometime around 11:00 and asks how it's going. I tell him what's happened to our load, and he can't believe it either. Nothing to do but go back to sleep.

Finally, close to noon, we get another load. Picking up in Effingham, Illinois, about 150 miles from where we were, and it's going to (yay!) Laredo, Texas. As good as California to us.

It won't be ready until 3:30 in the morning, so I drove to the Flying J truck stop here in Effingham, and we are about 2 miles from the place. If they don't cancel this load, we're on our way to Texas.

Now, if we can remember how to drive the truck, we will be in good shape.

Movies and videos. While we were in the hotel in Davenport, I watched some TV. More than I've watched in months. We saw some good movies and some so-so movies, and I got to watch some episodes of Everybody Loves Raymond and Friends I hadn't seen before. Quite relaxing.

The best movie we saw was one we ordered on pay-per-view: Body of Lies, starring Leonardo Dicaprio and Russell Crowe. It was great.

Another movie we ordered that we had high hopes for that was only mediocre was What Just Happened? with Robert Dinero.

A movie I watched on a movie channel I had never even heard of was called Vacancy and it was an entertaining horror flick. Not a lot of depth, but at the time I watched it, I wasn't looking for depth, so that was fine with me.

We also watched the two-night opening episodes of the new season of 24 , and already I can't wait to be able to get the DVD's when they are released later this year or next year.

Reading. I finished Shadow of the Sun by A. S. Byatt earlier today, and started A Confederacy of Dunces which I've been meaning to read for years. The Byatt novel was fascinating and enjoyable. And many thanks to Terry for Dunces.

I'm reading some other stuff also, as always, but that's the main focus right now.

The World Tour of Music continues. Today was John Denver day, and that continues tomorrow. Didn't know I had so much John Denver, but it's all enjoyable.

As I write this entry, I'm listening to Larry Norman . . . not part of the World Tour, just something I felt like listening to.

That's about it for now, I suppose.

Until next time . . . keep the wheels rollin' . . . making choices and taking responsibility


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