Comments By Penny

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  • Penny
  • Joined:
  • 5 years, 9 months ago
  • Comments:
  • 98

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Posted:  5 years, 3 months ago

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Should be heading into springfield

I'll be arriving for orientation on the 23rd and finishing the 26th.

Would love to meet some folks as I have only had the Rainy influence and she may lock me in a dungeon or something so I hear!

Posted:  5 years, 3 months ago

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Finally on the road in trucking school.

That emotional thing....Old School is right!

Somewhere in the middle of school (now I was working full time and going to school full time, so that DID play a factor) I drove home crying almost every night. Now I'm a girl, but a tough girl and I don't normally cry over much, but this I did. I was convinced I couldn't do it and wouldn't succeed and didn't have it in me.

I said I would quit every night and went back the next night every time. It paid off. I got my CDL first try and I never dreamed THAT would happen! Even right up to the last day of practice!

Good luck. And stick with it! You will do something that you can be VERY proud of!

Posted:  5 years, 3 months ago

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May I please have some bananas?

Isn't it the BEST feeling to have that done! I was SOOOO relieved and happy and proud!

Next step, the job! You're awesome! And here are your bananas!

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Posted:  5 years, 3 months ago

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Step one complete!

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Posted:  5 years, 3 months ago

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Got My CDL!!

Thanks guys!

And yes, Rainy will have me in her clutches...be afraid....very afraid...

Posted:  5 years, 3 months ago

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Prime orientation 5/22, more questions...

Yep, I'm scheduled to start orientation on the 23rd. I'm coming in with a CDL so I guess that's why I'm on a different schedule, but I'd love to meet you!

Posted:  5 years, 3 months ago

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Got My CDL!!

I am so thankful for this forum, the High Road Training, and everyone's encouragement.

I went to the DMV on Thursday and passed everything and got my CDL-A!

I've been talking to a recruiter at Prime and will likely head out to Missouri in a few weeks after I work out a notice with my current employer and take a mini-vacation to visit my son and a couple of friends.

Just wanted to say thank you to everyone, and especially to Rainy since she was an incredible encouragement for me!

Posted:  5 years, 3 months ago

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Got My CDL

I haven't been around a lot because I've been working full time while also going to school full time.

But yesterdayafternoon, I went to my appointment at the DMV and about 3 hours later, left with a shiny new CDL in my wallet!

Thank you for all the support!

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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I PASSED THE CDL TEST!!! I am now a fellow CDL license holder, and my good friend and recruiter is helping me be job placed!

Way to go! Can't wait to join you in a post like this (hopefully in a couple months!)

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Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Hey Rainy

Yay for Rainey's truck being out of the hospital!!

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Penny's Greenville Tech Diary

Thank you, G-Town, your encouragement really means a lot. I respect your opinions and comments that I've seen on the board here and I realize that a good attitude is a big part of the battle.

Even when I was convinced I was going to flunk out of truck driving school last week, I tried to put a positive spin on it and convince myself that if it didn't work out here, I could go to a company school.

I am determined one way or another!

But I do feel a little better after last night's class. I really want this, so I'll get there.

I sure wish it would click soon, though!. I'm a perfectionist and a control freak. This is messing with my head a little! I didn't anticipate that part, but I realize that I will grow and learn through that, too. It's all going to be good in the end. Especially if I can get this gear thing down!

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Penny's Greenville Tech Diary

Well, last week was beyond humbling. I made the lowest grades I've EVER made in my entire life on the driving tests...that count for a third of the whole grade. I was extremely discouraged. Went home crying a few nights.

I have a Bachelor's degree. This is so much harder than anything I did to get that.

BUT....I kept showing up for class and I've kept trying.

Because I'm going to do my best to beat this thing!

And last night went a tiny bit better. I still made tons of mistakes. My gear shifting is still horrendous. But the instructor was encouraging and that helped a lot.

I'm going to learn how to drive this beast.

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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How do you stay calm on the road as a truck driver?

It's interesting. My school is kind of showing us that.

If we complain about being cut off, complain about a quick light change, miss a gear and curse, etc., they consider it road rage. I don't know how many points are taken off for that, but I'm sure it's a lot. Basically they are training us to control our emotions in any situation and to focus on driving safely.

I found it odd and maybe harsh when they first mentioned this, but now I understand it a little better. We are responsible for a lot...our own lives and that of others on the road. We need the cool heads.

If you're worried about it, you're probably going to be fine. You're thinking ahead.

Good luck to you!

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Just starting as a female driver any suggestions out there?

I'm not on the road, I'm in school right now.

I'm a book learner. I went through the High Road here and I didn't find the tests too difficult at the DMV because the High Road will DEFINITELY help you be prepared. I did all 6 tests in a couple hours and the lady at the DMV was surprised I passed everything on the first try. So study the High Road training here and the permit will be a breeze for you.

Driving/gear shifting/backing. This apparently requires some muscle memory and coordination that I don't yet have. I have had some hard nights, but I'm determined. You CAN do this. I'm getting a little better even though some nights are better than others.

Expect it to be hard. Expect to get discouraged. But realize that you're learning something new. Don't be too hard on yourself. Be polite to your instructors and ask questions when you don't understand things. My instructors are not at all shy about telling me what I'm doing wrong. It is a man's world and they may treat you a little like one of the boys if you do something boneheaded. But they are also willing to help me if I ask about things I'm confused about.

I had never shifted gears in any vehicle. I truly suck at it still, but it's getting better little by little. I practiced with a plunger this weekend. I hope when I drive tonight (we were on the range last night) that I will be able to tell a difference. We will see.

The pre trip...memorization. We were given a 10 page document to memorize, but a lot of it repeats and a lot of the phrasing is the same. I have also learned a lot of the parts under the hood and such that I had no clue about. I am working on it and I even made voice memos on my phone so I can listen to parts of it at work. I'm going to do this and you can too if you want it bad enough.

You have to want it and apply yourself. This is probably the hardest thing I've ever done. No kidding. I'm 52 and have 4 kids, so that's saying a lot. It is a big challenge, but it has already made me realize that I'm tougher than I thought, which is a really, really good thing.

Part of it is I'm working and going to school. If you don't have to work through school, it will be easier, but it can be done either way.

Study hard and do your best and don't beat yourself up about things you don't know before you even start. You can do this!!

Good luck!

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Getting your cdl questions

I learned mostly stuff for the permit.

I let the school teach me Hours of Service and some other things, though I intend to go back through more here, but with school and work it's a lot harder now to do extra stuff.

I believe there is another thread that addresses this a few weeks ago regarding which sections. You will be required to take the General Knowledge, Air Brakes and Combinations. My school requires us to have tanker as well. I went ahead and added D/T and HazMat because I was prepared and it was a little cheaper at my DMV (one application fee) to go ahead with it, but the endorsements are usually up to you.

A guy in my class said he has stage fright too, but he managed. I don't think most places watch, but I suppose it could happen. Drink a lot, but not too much (so it won't be diluted), but enough so you really have to go!

Good luck to you, hon.

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Getting your cdl questions

Ditto on what Tractor Man said.

I recently got my permit and the High Road Training here was awesome and helped tremendously. I studied in class as well and listened, but I already knew most of what I needed to know from the training here.

I was not watched during my drug test, but it didn't really matter to me so much whether they did or not. It would not have been my all time favorite thing, but I want this enough to do what I have to do. Even if it makes me uncomfortable.

I know some people ask because they are nervous about someone watching and some people ask because they are doing something wrong. If you have drugs in your system or if you plan to continue using any, just don't. I was recently picked for a random while in school. We were told that we are considered "employees" and subject to DOT regulations while in school. So drug tests can happen and daily logs are a must. So just don't do anything that may end up causing you to jeopardize your career.

The physical was pretty basic. If you're generally healthy, shouldn't be a big deal.

Good luck to you!

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Backing. Would practice with a pickup and a 5th wheel travel trailer help me prepare?

Note that I am in school, but a student asked my instructor the same thing. Instructor told the student that it wouldn't help unless he just didn't know the steering differences with a trailer, but that it would be completely different.

Straight backing, once it clicks, isn't too bad. I'm not an expert by ANY stretch, but it's better than I thought it would be.

Offset is my current nemesis.

(As is shifting, but I'll conquer it)

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Penny's Greenville Tech Diary

So another week has passed. I'm trying to keep up, but work and school are biting me in the rear end! I'm pretty exhausted a lot of the time.

I was quite discouraged last week. It took a lot out of me to be able to be so very bad at something. I am used to things coming to me fairly easily and the book knowledge wasn't too bad for me. This stuff that requires coordination and muscle memory...well, I told my instructor last week that I seriously was not learning disabled. I fear he thought I might be as many times as he told me the exact same thing and I kept making the exact same mistakes he had just corrected me on. It was a hard week. I made some improvements though and I hope tonight I will be making even more improvements whether or not I'm driving or on the range. I'm not sure where I will be tonight, but I'll try to make the most of it.

Backing. Well. It is a might challenging, but one of the instructors gave me some hints on straight line backing that helped me a lot and I have a better feel for that. Offset backing is a completely different beast. I'm not sure I'll ever be able to wrap my head around it, but I'm hoping at some point, it will click. I am comfortable with only a small bit of it so far.

Changing gears for this girl who never drove a manual in her life has been challenging. One very important fact that I had no clue about is that neutral is not a spot. On my automatic car, neutral has one place. Apparently on a manual, it has a slot and not a place. No one ever told me that. I'm hoping that knowledge makes life a tiny bit easier.

Downshifting is a booger, but I will learn this very strange dance...eventually...maybe one day I'll even be good at it!

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Finally getting to it!

Oh goodness. That's not encouraging at all. I'm sorry you had that experience.

We are neighbors, kind of...I'm in South Carolina.

Were you able to get your CDL?

Is there a community college or another company that may be able to hire you? Don't give up if this is what you want to do!

Posted:  5 years, 5 months ago

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Headed to Prime

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