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The Best Trip for a Truck Driver - Home.

by TruckerMike

After being away from home for about 10 weeks, I finally got home. But it didn't go as planned! Part of the reason I've been gone so long is my own doing. If I really wanted to get home, all I would have had to do is put a request in. But I've been trying to stay out as long as possible during my training so I can get it done faster. After being gone for so long, my trainer sort of forced me to get back home and put in a request for me. We didn't hear anything from our dispatcher about it, but assumed he was working on it. Finally, we got a load that brought me within about 20 miles from my house. However, we received no message about me taking my home time. So, I called my dispatcher to find out what his plan was. Of course, when I called, he was out of the office and I had to call back the next day. This meant that I would find out the day of our delivery 20 miles from my house if I'd be going home. Not much for advance notice! Turns out, I was never evenentered into the system for home time, but he told me to take the opportunity anyway.

I'll tell ya, as much as I wanted to continue and get some more miles under my belt, as soon as I knew I'd be getting home I got real excited. I almost forgot how much I missed everyone, my local town, a hot shower at home, driving my little sportscar, and just being in a familiar area. Ten weeks is a long time to be away from home, and it really makes me appreciate people like our armed forces who are away for a year or more at a time. It must be real hard.

After I got home and visited with my parents for a little while, I decided to take a trip to see a friend of mine. This meant I'd have to drive a 4 wheeler for the first time since I got on a big truck 10 weeks ago. Holy smokes!!! That took some getting used to!! It was very strange to get in my car and be so low to the ground. And since I have a little sports car,my car does 0 - 60mph in just under 6 seconds. It was quite a feeling to mash the accelerator and go that fast! But alas, I can't have quite as much fun anymore. A speeding ticket will probably cost me my job right now, plus traffic tickets are double for CDL holders. But it was still fun to drive my car.

Home Time Is For Relaxing

As bad as it might sound, I didn't do much on my home time. I didn't attend a sporting event, I didn't go out to the clubs (although I did have a beer or ten), I didn't have a party, nothing like that. I sat around with my friends and family and did pretty much nothing.....and it felt great. I watched some sports (more like watched the Blackhawks and Cubs lose!), I visited with my sister, my nieces, my brother, my parents, and my good friends. It was nice to just roam around and catch up with everyone and have very few responsibilities to take care of. I slept in, took extra long showers, enjoyed sitting on a couch again, watched some movies on the big screen, and got re-energized. It was a very nice time. My favorite part was just talking with everyone. It's one thing to talk with your loved ones on the phone, but it's another to be with them, face to face.

With that said, I can't express how ready I am to get back out on the open road. While I took my home time, my trainer took some solo runs. Unfortunately, he got held up at the boarder after making a pickup in Canada. This delayed him a few days, so it's been nearly a week now since I took my home time. I love being able to visit with my friends and family, but I also am starting to get the itch to get back on that truck. I'm anxious to finish up my training and get my own truck. I still probably have about 6 weeks left before I get my own truck, but it should go pretty fast. I've found that the time flies out on the road. In any case, it was great to get home and enjoy the luxuries and time with people I know from home, but I'm definitely ready to get back out there. Hopefully tomorrow night I'll get back on the truck, then be dispatched out the next morning. Home stretch for training. The next time I get home, it'll probably be to load up my very own truck once I'm out solo. Now there's a scary thought!!

Until next time, drive safely.

TruckerMike

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Dispatcher:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
by Brett Aquila

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