Comments By Vicki M.

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  • Vicki M.
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  • 9 months, 4 weeks ago
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Posted:  3 months, 1 week ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

And just like that, it’s over. In a good way. Today I tested out of training, got assigned my own truck and leave either Sunday or Monday for my solo week. Just need to concentrate on not hitting anything!

It’s been a marathon. 4 months. But I’m almost there!

Posted:  3 months, 3 weeks ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

Time for a long overdue update. I came back from my hometime and got on a new trainer’s truck. This man is a dream. Instead of being borderline abusive, he actually explains what I’m doing wrong and how to fix it. Our personalities mesh well and I have learned a ton that my prior trainers either didn’t do or didn’t teach me. It was worth sticking it out, though I do hope I have an opportunity to review my trainers. I know some companies do that. But on to bigger, better and brighter things!

This truck keeps rolling. One of the many reasons I haven’t updated in so long! No time lol Drive, learn, eat, sleep. My backing has improved exponentially, though I still struggle some, but my trainer is convinced that I am almost ready to go solo. I’ve got almost all my miles in and am looking forward to it. This trainer has rebuilt the confidence that the others tore away.

So in a nutshell, things are going well. Better than expected. I’ll be in my own truck soon. Looking forward to it with anticipation and a little trepidation lol.

Posted:  4 months, 3 weeks ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

I am getting a new trainer. The last one was a hothead with a very short fuse. I don't work well with that, I cannot learn anything when I am walking on egg shells trying not to make him mad. I did endure 2 weeks on his truck (3 if you count the week I spent in a hotel when he was on home time). He finally asked for me to be off his truck. He had no patience when it came to my backing difficulties...it was so bad that he was directing me into a spot and another trucker told him he was a real a**hole. That was when he decided I was off his truck. It was okay for me, I wanted off, but am too stubborn to contact anyone to get me moved. That being said, he taught me a lot more than his daughter did, and is probably a good trainer for people who can work under that kind of direction. I am not that person. When people start yelling or having temper tantrums (over anything, even if it isn't directed at me...yeah that happened too...), I walk away if I can, or I just ignore them. Neither works well in a training situation. Onward to the next and hopefully final trainer.

He dropped me off in Missoula at the hotel on a Friday, and on Monday I went to the yard. Got some backing practice in, which is a huge plus. I was supposed to go on home time that Friday for a week...so I asked if I could just fly home for my home time. I would pay, I haven't been home in almost 3 months. Too long for those with a family and pets, IMHO. It worked out since they didn't have a trainer for me. So the guys at the yard took me back to the hotel, I packed up my stuff and jumped on a plane home. I will fly back to Missoula next Monday. The instructor at the yard offered to help me more on my backing, so I will do that until my next trainer is ready to pick me up. (See you soon, Bear lmao) I have loved being at home, but am now ready to get back out there. I won't be gone this long again.

So where it stands right now, I received my CDL on May 13. Today is July 8, and I JUST got my first 10k in. Between home time and short runs, it has taken a while. Hoping that my next trainers truck keeps moving. I want to be out there in my own truck, even though I know I am not ready yet. I just keep my eye on the prize and keep on truckin' lol

Posted:  5 months, 2 weeks ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

Time for another update. I have a new trainer. My last trainer traded me for another student. I was kind of glad until I found out I am now being trained by her father lol. Just my luck. But he has 20+ years of experience and has been teaching me a lot. Downside is that he had hometime coming up, so I am back in a hotel in Missoula. I’ve spent almost as much time here as I have in the truck. But I’ll keep my mouth shut. I’m going home the first week in July, even though my trainer(s) think that I should just suck it up and stay out. No way I’m spending another week in this hotel. I’ve earned my hometime and I haven’t been biome since the middle of April. He can suck it up and drive in the desert lol

Right now I’ve been working on learning the paperwork aspect and still working on backing. Not sure I’ll ever get good at it, but I keep trying. The rest is going well. Just gritting my teeth to get through training. It’s all I can do right now.

Posted:  6 months ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

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My trainer has been in hometime all week. I am sitting in a hotel in Missoula lol. Nothing to update. Same lovely trainer lol

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Well, sheesh.. anything fun going on there?? I've not been on FB for quite sometime, but YOU are a celeb on there, haha!!

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Hang in there Vicki. My suggestion is that you ride this out. I know it is tempting to want to strangle your trainer, or just beg the company to switch you to another. Remember that this is temporary. As long as you feel you are learning and progressing, you can endure the ridiculousness of your trainer. I had a crazy trainer. I still had a successful trucking career. The training is a drop in the bucket compared to the career. It may not be what you expected, but that's okay. You will learn a ton of things during your first year as a solo driver. Ride this out and keep looking forward to being on your own.

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Well said, as always O/S.

~ Anne ~

Not much in Missoula but I did manage to get some shopping done. Ate at a few local restaurants. It’s been good. Tomorrow we ship out for a month so I stocked up. It’s hard to get her to stop anywhere except yards and rest areas. But I have everything and am good to go.

Posted:  6 months ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

Hang in there Vicki. My suggestion is that you ride this out. I know it is tempting to want to strangle your trainer, or just beg the company to switch you to another. Remember that this is temporary. As long as you feel you are learning and progressing, you can endure the ridiculousness of your trainer. I had a crazy trainer. I still had a successful trucking career. The training is a drop in the bucket compared to the career. It may not be what you expected, but that's okay. You will learn a ton of things during your first year as a solo driver. Ride this out and keep looking forward to being on your own.

I’m hanging in there. I’ve already done a month with her. It could be a lot worse. She’s young and only has barely a year of experience. We are also very different people. But all in all, she’s not too bad. I won’t change because I do NOT want to set back my training any more than I have to. Next month she’s taking hometime and I am too. Because we live so far apart I’ll be home close to two weeks. So I break it up in pieces. Two weeks. Another 2 weeks. Hotel for 7 days. One month. Home for 2 weeks. Another couple weeks and I am done lol. I got this.

Posted:  6 months ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

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Finally a minute without driving or listening to my trainer. I don’t like her much. She’s a bit weird, possibly bipolar and definitely not cut out to train anybody in anything. I feel like I’m being trained by her dad by proxy. Every time I ask a question she calls her dad. But it could be worse and she’s a means to an end for me. I am beginning to think she might kick me off the truck lol. Honestly she only seems to be happy when she’s driving. We even went to dinner one night and she seemed unhappy. Whatever. Enough *****ing about her. Like I said, could be worse and I’ve had a career of keeping my thoughts to myself for over 30 years.

We had a week from Hades. First thing that happened was my trainer was driving, a car cut in front of her and we had a HARD brake. There was no avoiding it honestly. When we got to the receiver we had dumped the load. Had a nice meeting with safety. AND to top things off , when she was telling her dad about it, he was trying to figure out how I caused it. Yeah gotta watch my wagon in more ways than one here. She did man up and take the blame. So after we get a trailer there, same day, we are taking it to some Coke place in Portland. Of course, we NEVER follow what the gps says. We NEVER figure it out on our own. We ALWAYS have her dad on the phone giving us directions. So this time he gave us the WRONG directions and we ended up in old downtown Portland. Narrow roads. Sharp corners. Cars parked on either side. 53ft trailer, 14ft high. That was fun. I survived and didn’t hit anything. Finally she let me follow the GPS and we found the right place. But the ONLY street into it was closed from construction. We continued up the street while she called the receiver. It was a 4 lane road with a 20 mile an hour speed limit. And overhanging trees. She told me to get in the right lane. I mentioned the trees and she said just get over you CANNOT be in the left hand lane... so I did. Hit a limb and destroyed the corner of the trailer. Went back to the Portland yard and got a new trailer. Avoided the safety guy who was still stacking our dumped load. Called the receiver, turns out they’ll move the cones for you to get in. She alley docked the truck and clipped a tree. It was narrow. I went back to driving and she asked me to pull over, so I did. She decided I wasn’t far enough over (on a one lane road mind you) so I moved over a little. She wanted more and I clipped another tree. Sorry Portland, we are hell on your trees.

The rest of the week was uneventful. I am just hoping to not die or kill someone before training is over. At this point I cannot wait to get my own truck and make my own mistakes without my trainer, but I still need to learn more. Just wish I had someone with more experience.

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Always thinking & wondering about you, m'lady!

Anything 'new?' Same 'rad' trainer?!?!? Miss your updates! (This happened quick, eh?)

~ Anne ~

My trainer has been in hometime all week. I am sitting in a hotel in Missoula lol. Nothing to update. Same lovely trainer lol

Posted:  6 months, 1 week ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

Finally a minute without driving or listening to my trainer. I don’t like her much. She’s a bit weird, possibly bipolar and definitely not cut out to train anybody in anything. I feel like I’m being trained by her dad by proxy. Every time I ask a question she calls her dad. But it could be worse and she’s a means to an end for me. I am beginning to think she might kick me off the truck lol. Honestly she only seems to be happy when she’s driving. We even went to dinner one night and she seemed unhappy. Whatever. Enough *****ing about her. Like I said, could be worse and I’ve had a career of keeping my thoughts to myself for over 30 years.

We had a week from Hades. First thing that happened was my trainer was driving, a car cut in front of her and we had a HARD brake. There was no avoiding it honestly. When we got to the receiver we had dumped the load. Had a nice meeting with safety. AND to top things off , when she was telling her dad about it, he was trying to figure out how I caused it. Yeah gotta watch my wagon in more ways than one here. She did man up and take the blame. So after we get a trailer there, same day, we are taking it to some Coke place in Portland. Of course, we NEVER follow what the gps says. We NEVER figure it out on our own. We ALWAYS have her dad on the phone giving us directions. So this time he gave us the WRONG directions and we ended up in old downtown Portland. Narrow roads. Sharp corners. Cars parked on either side. 53ft trailer, 14ft high. That was fun. I survived and didn’t hit anything. Finally she let me follow the GPS and we found the right place. But the ONLY street into it was closed from construction. We continued up the street while she called the receiver. It was a 4 lane road with a 20 mile an hour speed limit. And overhanging trees. She told me to get in the right lane. I mentioned the trees and she said just get over you CANNOT be in the left hand lane... so I did. Hit a limb and destroyed the corner of the trailer. Went back to the Portland yard and got a new trailer. Avoided the safety guy who was still stacking our dumped load. Called the receiver, turns out they’ll move the cones for you to get in. She alley docked the truck and clipped a tree. It was narrow. I went back to driving and she asked me to pull over, so I did. She decided I wasn’t far enough over (on a one lane road mind you) so I moved over a little. She wanted more and I clipped another tree. Sorry Portland, we are hell on your trees.

The rest of the week was uneventful. I am just hoping to not die or kill someone before training is over. At this point I cannot wait to get my own truck and make my own mistakes without my trainer, but I still need to learn more. Just wish I had someone with more experience.

Posted:  6 months, 1 week ago

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Postcards from the Road! (Post Yours Please!)

Every time I get upset with my trainer and think about going back home, I remember these kinds of views. Chemult Oregon sunrise

0466199001621801193.jpgsorry about the double post. Forgot the photo lol

Posted:  6 months, 1 week ago

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Postcards from the Road! (Post Yours Please!)

Every time I get upset with my trainer and think about going back home, I remember these kinds of views. Chemult Oregon sunrise

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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Got My CDL

Thanks everyone! That was a lot of bananas!

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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Got My CDL

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Got my CDL in one try. It only took a lot of study, two tearful breakdowns and one temper tantrum, but I got it. Now to make my 30k training hours without pushing my trainer out the door lol

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Congratulations!

Hopefully you meant 30,000 miles ;-)

Laura

Lol yes miles.

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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Postcards from the Road! (Post Yours Please!)

There was still snow in Wyoming and a sunset that was more spectacular than the photo makes it out to be. Love that state. 0525776001621044253.jpg

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Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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Got My CDL

Got my CDL in one try. It only took a lot of study, two tearful breakdowns and one temper tantrum, but I got it. Now to make my 30k training hours without pushing my trainer out the door lol

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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I Am A 58 Year Old Woman Who Wants To Be A Long Haul Trucker

Tammy you are singing my song. I am a 54 year old woman and just got my CDL yesterday. I have been on the road training for 2 weeks and am now going for 2ish months of team training.

I left a very stable job job that I had for 22 years. I left a career I was in for 32 years. I told my adult son and husband that I’d see them when I see them. We talk on the phone and FaceTime right now and honestly they are missing me more than I miss them. I’ve been homesick once but that was when my trainer told me I wouldn’t get home for 3 months. Fortunately our fleet manager was more forthcoming with the fact that my trainer hates to go to Cali and that’s why she was telling me not to put in for home time lol guess what? She’s going to Cali every time she takes home time. Because I’m going home too.

Even with all of it, it still feels like it was the best decision for me at this point. I lived my life pleasing others and now it’s my turn. And backing sucks. But it’s something you can learn. I am.

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

It’s been a minute since I’ve updated. I ended up being on my trainers truck for 8 days when they pulled us back in so I could test. I got to the hotel last Friday and spent the weekend catching up on laundry and chilling

Monday we went to the yard and started practicing backing and pretrip. We also started going on drives on the test route. For some reason I back and drive much better without my trainer in my ear. She’s a nice enough girl but we just speak a different language even though we both speak English. She isn’t good at training yet. I am her second student. The first walked off the truck and bought an airline ticket home after 3 days lol. But I am stubborn and have spent most of my life in jobs where I had to swallow my words and be nice. It’ll be okay, I only have a couple more months with her.

Even though I didn’t feel ready, I tested on Thursday. They thought I was ready lol. In Montana the DMV generates the portion of the pretrip you do. I ended up with coupling, trailer and in cab. The only issue I had was remembering what was coupling and what was driver side door. I just did everything from the fairings back to be safe. I got no points.

Then came backing. My straight back was good. No points. My blindside offset was good, 1 point for bumping a cone. My alley dock... oh my alley dock. I completed it after having TWO sloppy sobbing breakdowns and ONE temper tantrum. I even asked my examiner if I’d failed yet so I could get off that truck lol. I ended up getting 7 points. It felt like forever. The most frustrating thing was later that afternoon I was alley docking like I’d been driving for 5 years lol

The driving portion was easy enough. I missed a couple points for not exaggerating my head movements enough and once for vaguely waving at a truck stop and asking the examiner if he wanted a roller dog lol

BUT I PASSED. I now have a CDL.

My trainer picks me up tomorrow morning and we will start team driving until I am to 30k miles. I’ll get $600 a week or 12 cents a mile (whichever is greater ) for the first 10k and 700 a week or 14 cents a mile for the second 20k. After that I’ll do a solo week and then I’ll be on my own in my own truck. I cannot wait, mostly because my trainer lives on potato chips, and doesn’t do caffeine lol. I want to eat healthier and have a coffee maker. And my dog. So that’s where it’s at now. I’ll try to update more often!

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

Ahhh yes, good 'ol Missoula weather! Glad you seem to be progressing! When you get back through the 'Zoo, I highly recommend The Stone of Accord, and Staggering Ox!

We are at a hotel near The Stone. I eat there almost every day lol

Posted:  7 months ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

My trainer finally showed up on Wednesday. She gave some story about having a 30 hour window for a load pickup, but from what I have gathered since, she wanted to do a 34 with her boyfriend. Whatever, I am finally in a truck. She’s youngish, 34, the daughter of a trucker and trained by her dad. She’s been driving a year or so. Her mom also teamed with her dad, so hopefully her knowledge is genetic!

She picked me up in Missoula on Wednesday midday and I drove to Billings where we spent the night. After we woke up I drove almost all the way to Denver. She brought us in and then delivered the load this morning. Our pickup isn’t until tomorrow so we are hanging around the Denver yard. A friend of her family (the dads ex codriver from years ago) is going to pick us up and take us to his house for dinner and a shower.

All in all, it’s not bad, but I can tell that she and I are of a different breed. She’s very much “we have time” and I’m very much “let’s go!” But it’s only a couple months. She’s also not as clean and organized as I’d like to be, but still not as bad as it could be.

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Wilson Logistics journey, From Corrections Officer to truck driver.

I'll be following your journey too. I noticed you're also from Vegas as well. Us desert rats are going to be in for a weather shock. Lol

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They're sending me to Montana.

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Are you going to be training in Missouri or Montana? I'm leaving this weekend to start training with Wilson in MT. I am leaving a 32 year career...I look forward to following your journey.

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Very cool. I'll be there starting this Monday.

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The weather has been fickle to say the least. Do you have a date set yet? The trainers up here are awesome,

Posted:  7 months, 1 week ago

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Wilson Logistics - Missoula MT

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the instructor told me to do a Uturn. Now I’ve read you shouldn’t do that, so I asked. He said it’s fine, just do it. So my first ever maneuver in a truck was a Uturn lol. I felt fine driving. I like forward way better than backward!

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That's funny!

Just so you know, a U-turn at a dead end is fine as long as their is room to make it.

The problem with U-turns is when you are on a street where traffic is flowing in both directions. A truck is big and it takes a good bit of time to make a turn. Because of that time it is a potentially dangerous maneuver. Cars going 70 plus miles an hour come upon you quickly. Many U-turns end up being accidents. That's why you avoid them.

That’s what I figured. There was enough room there to turn 3 trucks probably. It’s something I definitely wouldn’t do in traffic.

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