Friday, January 16, 2009

What, no prom?

Well, it’s been a few weeks. What with Christmas and things shutting down and people having holidays, I didn’t ‘graduate’ until last week. Final assessment drive: check. (Reversed into the right bay, blimey.) Three day classroom induction: check. I now know the company policy for being hijacked, which is a significant comfort. It boils down to ‘keep driving unless you think it’s safer to stop’. I’m glad it’s not too complicated; one wouldn’t want to forget the finer points in a crisis. Winter driving assessment in simulator: check. Apparently they want to watch you drive on the world’s slipperiest surface, under circumstances where you can’t break anything or fall off a mountain. Got a bit seasick.

So we find ourselves, finally, four months after beginning this mad escapade at the point where real trucking begins. Another new truck, another new partner, but this time a team driver who will be asleep when I am at the wheel and vice versa. No more instructors; they think I can do it. Would I be able to sleep with someone as new as me at the wheel? Think I’ll plead the fifth.

New truck is an automatic Freightliner, no fancy chrome stuff where your sightlines should be. It feels a little odd not fighting with a 13 speed crash gearbox to get the thing moving but I have a feeling my elderly knees will appreciate the change relatively soon.

New partner is Neil, who is another Brit, softly spoken with a bit of a West Country burr and much favoured by the despatch team who look after us. Apparently he always gets where they send him on time. I am hoping to not spoil his reputation. We head out tonight for Montreal, and thence to Calgary, and then, who knows? It’s bitterly cold, with record-breaking wind chills, Alberta Clippers are still dumping masses of snow across the country and we leave at midnight. Remind me, what was it that was unexciting about making wedding cakes for a living?

1 comment:

  1. Dumping ?
    Snow ??
    Some things never change, eh Rocky ?
    As for spoiling Neil's reputation, I could not possibly comment ;-)
    Stay clear of the highjackers and enjoy your trucking :-)
    All the best,