Profile For Griffin

Griffin's Info

  • Location:
    Las Vegas, NV

  • Driving Status:
    Rookie Solo Driver

  • Social Link:
    Griffin On The Web

  • Joined Us:
    1 year, 3 months ago

Griffin's Bio

Whats up everybody!? My name is Kenya but I prefer to go by my last name Griffin and I'm originally from Las Vegas, NV. I am starting my truck driving journey with Wilson Logistics CDL school and look forward to sharing experiences and information from my newbie years as a dry van company driver for those who are interested.

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Posted:  10 months, 4 weeks ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Spartan, Hope all is well, just now getting around to getting back on here as I’ve been pedal to the metal since going solo. If you’re still around how’s training treating you? I’d love to read along or help in anyway I can.

Griffin- Thank you for the updated information. I greatly appreciate it. Glad to see that you’re on your own. They moved my training up to this past Monday since a spot opened up in Springfield, MO. There are three of us in our class. The fourth person had to leave Monday due to medical reasons. Definitely getting lots of reps on the pad and getting this training knocked out. Keep in touch and be safe!

Posted:  12 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Great thread. Enjoy reading about your experiences. How are things going at Wilson? What type of miles are you seeing weekly? I’m starting with them on the 25th in MT. One other question I have, how are the health benefits? Trying to estimate what my weekly deductions would be for health insurance for my family. Any input would be helpful. Stay safe!

Spartan, Like I promised.. the benefits package was released to me today after my upgrade paperwork and it’s really not that bad in terms of pricing. Vision will run you about $5 for a family plan, dental will run you about $20-30 depending on which option you choose (basic or premium), and medical will vary but we have three plans (core, value, and the buy up plan). Pricing is between $190-$285 for families. All of these are billed weekly, they also have 30,000 AD&D insurance amongst other options like legal representation, FSA, 3% 401K match. Hope this helps

Posted:  12 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

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Seriously, I can't stress enough how important it is to do your homework and select the place that fits your own personal values, in the long run this will save you alot of self induced stress when people don't treat you the way you know you deserve to be treated.

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Griffin we are all very happy things are working out with Wilson. Seriously that is fantastic.

I want to address your point in the above paragraph. The homework aspect of researching this should not include reading company reviews on the internet without knowing the source of the information. It’s a well known fact that the vast majority of reviews are written by former drivers that were fired for lack of performance or other issues related to lack of personal accountability.

Focus on performance first and foremost, worry less about how you think you will be treated. The name on the side of the truck is far less important than the driver in the first seat. Great drivers can be and are successful for every company found in these two links:

Paid CDL Training Programs

Trucking Company Reviews

It’s all about performance; thus every company has multiple million-mile drivers who are treated like gold. They earned it by consistently performing. It’s the only way...

Good luck, safe travels and please...watch your wagon.

GTown, I agree with you 100%, I actually began writing about Wilson Logistics here on trucking truth because I myself came to this site when I was starting out but found it difficult to find any newer info about them as a company. This site has been nothing but a godsend for me and I hope anyone else interested in a truck driving career utilizes all the links for life-saving information. Stay safe out there!

Posted:  1 year ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

5/11 Long time no talk! What's going on everyone reading, I know i've been kind of absent from posting about Wilson but I am finally at the finish line of the program and am in possession of my very own 2018 Freightliner Cascadia Wilson Logistics Company Truck! I've gotta admit, if I were to be asked about how the entire experience went, I would have absolutely zero complaints (everything from onboarding day one down to me spreading my wings and flying to receivers and parking with 4 min left on my DOT clock like I had to do earlier in the week lol). I truly believe that the Wilson's have each and every drivers best interest in mind as they move you through the program at an accelerated pace and the time you get to share with the trainers out on the road is divided up into very informative helpful tips that I felt in my experience lead me to being the success I am today operating this beast all on my own. I'm currently sitting in our Portland Oregon yard due to my truck having a coolant leak issue, but even with the small hiccup I am still proud to be apart of a company that is close nit like this one is. I plan on being more active on this thing now that I have my own rig setup the way I like it, so if anyone were to have any questions about the whole process or just Wilson in general i'm always game to respond. Tomorrow I have a window pane load that I am picking up and dragging up to Billings MT and at this point, as long as it isnt like my last Monday (3 drop and hooks and a live firewood unload at the Safeway DC in the pouring rain/mud in Spokane Washington) I really don't mind lol. Since I am wrapping up my solo week here, I am now technically an official graduate of Wilson's CDL training program and to be starting off at .46 cpm with a close nit group of drivers that stay in contact via facebook regarding any topic known to man, I couldn't feel any better than I do about my decision to DO MY RESEARCH on companies and for choosing this one in the end. Seriously, I can't stress enough how important it is to do your homework and select the place that fits your own personal values, in the long run this will save you alot of self induced stress when people don't treat you the way you know you deserve to be treated. Cheers everyone, I'll keep in touch.

Posted:  1 year ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Great thread. Enjoy reading about your experiences. How are things going at Wilson? What type of miles are you seeing weekly? I’m starting with them on the 25th in MT. One other question I have, how are the health benefits? Trying to estimate what my weekly deductions would be for health insurance for my family. Any input would be helpful. Stay safe!

Spartan,

First off welcome to the Weagle family! Wilson Logistics is a great company and I am having a very good experience as I finish with my A seat/last program upgrade this upcoming Thursday. This week (which was my solo week on my own in my own truck) I saw about 2,200 miles and I did two local loads down in Spokane Washington which pays some type of flat rate just for moving a few trailers to our yard there so not bad. Considering you'll be getting .46cpm once you reach your solo week, you should see at least a grand for a hard week's work despite how things are kind of slow for us right now due to this virus crap that has stuff shut down. Missoula terminal is great, training guys are eager to help and the constant support truly makes picking up all there is to know worth your time and effort so that's always good. I haven't gotten back to the terminal yet to learn more about what kind of benefits package we are offered but i'll be sure to hop back on here later in the week when I return and drop a segment on it so people are aware. Once you get to the Days Inn out there, make sure you try the sausage gravy and biscuits for breakfast one day.. good stuff!

Posted:  1 year, 1 month ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Long time no talk everybody! It’s 4/1 and I’m about two weeks away from getting my own Wilson truck! My co-driver and I have covered almost 17,000 miles in less than a month which is over half of the programs requirements before you get your shot at a solo week and your own rig so time flies once you enter Wilson’s program. I’ve seen a bunch of different cities, a bunch of crazy docks, and am having a bunch of fun out on the road despite all the corona crap happening these days. I cannot tell anyone who is considering a career in truck driving enough how important this job is and how needed we all are especially at a time like this where the rest of the states seem to be at sort of a stand still. I know one thing is for sure, someone must of been looking out for me upstairs when I decided to jump out of my corporate desk job into this new career at the last minute! All my fellow drivers take care out there, until next post!

Posted:  1 year, 1 month ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

So we got the opportunity to drive donner pass FINALLY without snow chains but only after dancing the tango with California DOT placing the chain law into effect and out of effect various times during our little drive before reaching Fremont, CA. Since California wants you to chain 6 and my co-driver didn’t wanna go through the hassle, we sat for about a day and a half clutching to our phones hoping for the chain laws to be lifted long enough for us to leave the Reno TA and hike through Donner before they put the restriction back on (we got close one time and low and behold were sent back to the TA at the top of the hill where they setup a makeshift checkpoint in the midst of everything). We finally yesterday caught some good weather and ended up getting through donner and leaving our flour load at Wilson drop yard in Frenchcamp, CA instead of taking it to Sysco (which I’m glad for, they take forever to unload you there). We are now driving a short hop over to Boise Idaho to deliver some cereal from General Mills to a Winco DC and then grabbing sugar and heading back down the 80 to Frenchcamp again. Let’s hope this time when we drive back down there we don’t have to sit for a day and a half loosing money and mileage over some snow, but safety first!

Posted:  1 year, 1 month ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

It's been a while but here we go on another update. Since I have become a "C" seat driver (Wilson's program starts you at a D seat and moves you through all the way up to A seat where you're on your own) my co driver and I have done a little over 6,000 miles in a week and a half which isn't bad considering I need the truck to get to 10,000 miles before I upgrade again to a B2 seat (more pay). Since he's a lease op we try to complete as many loads as we can within our Sunday to Sunday pay period and as of now we're hovering around 4ish per week (takes us about a day and a half sometimes weather permitting to complete 1,200 mile runs). I'm still very much enjoying the career swap that I made and the entire experience has been very cool to say the least so there's that. We are currently stopped at a TA outside of Sparks, NV because the I-80 is shut down courtesy of a few accidents and a 70 mile stretch of snow (in which we don't feel like chaining up for). With all of this crazy virus stuff going on in the world I'm still trying to understand how we're gonna make it down into our flour load's destination which is Fremont, CA with most of the Bay Area being shut down but I suppose this is part of the adventure too. Hope everyone's staying safe!

Posted:  1 year, 2 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

What's going on everybody reading/following along!! So, a bunch of stuff has happened in the past three weeks or so that I've been gone from Vegas. Since my last post I have been routed back to Missoula and have been here for about 5 days now in which I prepared a little more for my CDL skills test which actually happened yesterday at 2pm MST. I passed with no errors on the pre-trip (I got lucky and only had to do the engine compartment along with coupling, in-cab, and air brakes), 2 points on my offset backing, none on the alley dock, and none on straight backing! This entire process with Wilson has been seamless and I strongly suggest any newbie or adventurer looking to get into a career with truck driving to check out Wilson and give them a chance. Now that I am a C seat, my trainer will be grabbing me from Missoula tomorrow 3/6 and we will be heading out into the unknown as a team in which i'll be making no less than $600 a week for starters (which isn't bad considering after a month or so I'll be making .46 cpm after reaching 20,000 miles with my fellow teammate). I'm always cruising this site for more info so if anyone has any Wilson related questions I'm game to answer those for the people who can't find much. Cheers!

Posted:  1 year, 2 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Well we've reached the end of week 1 with my trainer Charles and I've learned a considerable amount. Our first load together was a bunch of newspaper rolls that went from Missoula MT down to Denver CO through lots of snow and steep grades (which are fun to learn about and IN by the way). The drive was decent to say the least, the worst parts of it was waking up every day to a cold truck despite us running the heater relentlessly (can't beat 5 degrees and snow can you) and then having to do the pre-trip inspection under those same conditions. It seems that there isn't really a shortage of loads for the Western 10 division of Wilson either, since we dropped off the newspaper load at the Denver Wilson terminal we haven't stopped running which is nice to be a part of. The next load we got out of Denver after wrangling in a new trailer brought us right back up to Missoula which was a beer load heading out to a local beverage company called Summit. Before we could drop that load off, we received another pre-plan for the load we are currently on right now which is flour heading down from Great Falls MT to northern California. My trainer seems to be really genuine with his attempts at making sure I have everything I need to pass that CDL test on the first go around (I mean I would be to if I got paid $800 for my student passing with no issues). But I cannot complain, so far this entire process has been a solid one and I'd seriously recommend anyone who is considering going to CDL school to invest themselves in Wilson Logistics. Plenty of backing help, plenty of wiggle room to make things fair between dispatch and your needs, and the truck that you are in isn't all that bad starting out (we're in a freight.. can't speak for the Pete's that they have on the lot).

Posted:  1 year, 2 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

So yesterday was my last day of orientation and the whole day it was pouring snow. I was informed the day before that I was going to be heading out with my trainer Charles Friday night and needed to go and check out of my hotel room (YES, I was excited for that of course until later in the day when conflict happened). We got the opportunity to drive the truck out of the lot and around the neighborhood for the first half of the day along with getting a chance to couple and uncouple a trailor too which was nice to offset the bookwork. We ate lunch at a place called Roosterloo out here which served some pretty cool soup and sandwiches (which came in handy because it was stupid cold out, so I got a meatball sub) and after that it was more backing work. I was a little shocked we didn't learn anything about chaining the tires while it was pouring snow but I understand we didn't have much time so all is fair. Towards the end of the day I was informed that my trainer actually wasn't going to come and get me until today 2/15 so after I checked out of my room and hauled all my stuff over to the facility assuming a late pickup from there... I had to get another room booked back out for me again and then haul it all back into the room for one more night (a little irritating but still, i'm cool headed so no biggie). Now today, I have met my trainer Charles who is a cool relaxed individual similar to myself and learned that our first load is a bunch of newpaper rolls that need to be in Burlington, Colorado by the 20th so due to his good planning we get to make our way down 1,000+ miles at a slow pace. Till next time!

Posted:  1 year, 2 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Orientation Day 4: Beware of the Backing Today was awesome. We started off the morning by looking over the pre-trip booklet they gave us with some having the opportunity to go out to the truck again to practice whatever they felt was needing to be practiced (I just sat back in the class and read the book while watching YouTube videos, I study kind of weirdly and book work oddly works best for me so). This was pretty much the first half of our day before being wrangled up to go eat lunch with our Ryan. Today we went to Taco Bell which, eh.. food is food right? Now after we got back we got our shot at trying out some coupling and uncoupling techniques along with backing the truck up (90 and straight back). Since there were four of us we had to do alot of waiting around for the others to finish their moves but I didn't mind too much as I was still learning away from being in the drivers seat. Once it got to my turn, I climbed up to the wheel, sat my butt down in the seat, and performed my first 90 back with only 2 or 3 pull ups! Backing doesn't seem to be hard to me personally, it's more about being aware of and knowing how to fix your mistakes if one occurs so that was pretty neat. Like I mentioned before, all of our trainers are either en route or stationed here in Missoula just waiting for us to start riding the open roads so tomorrow is (at this point) truly a blur depending on where I end up landing (hopefully out of the snow and into some sunny weather like i'm used to but we'll see). My trainer is based out of San Diego luckily so I suppose it's safe for me to say I will NOT be minding taking home time out there with him if I must.. Nothing like a shot at some good surf!

Posted:  1 year, 2 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Orientation day 3: So today was a far better day for us all then yesterday. My three colleagues and me have officially ALL passed the required Montana Tests and have received our Montana Permits!! dancing-banana.gif Yesterday when I took the test I was hurdled onto a computer that operates totally different than how the Nevada CDL test worked (the Nevada test shows you when you’ve gotten something right or wrong while the Montana test waits till the end to tell you if you’ve gotten a question correct). Today I was given the option of a paper version of all three tests and I passed them all with minimal errors! The paper option is a BREEZE because you can actually look back on what you might have missed and keep record in case they come back up haha. The coolest thing about us all passing today was that, our trainer Ryan decided to start working on the pre-trip portions with us on an actual truck which is arguably one of the hardest things to grasp when you’re a rookie so we all were grateful for the tutorial. After lunch at Jimmy Johns we spent the rest of the day testing each other on where things were and the right acronyms to say for each discovered part. We also took the time to all go grab dinner after a long day at work to celebrate which was cool because we all seem to have similar personalities which makes us all pretty good friends I’d say (training is that much more easier when you enjoy the people you’re learning with). Tomorrow we take on a new task along with more pre-trip help... practice on our BACKING. This should be good! PS: Ryan told all four of us today who our trainers are gonna be and it appears that three of our trainers (mine included) will be here this Friday to pick us up! The other guy has to wait till Sunday for dispatch. Till tomorrow..

Posted:  1 year, 3 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Orientation Day 2 So today was DMV day for the four of us in my class with one guy passing all three tests on the first go around while the remaining 3 of us (myself included) just missed the mark. Because we did not pass, we three spent the bulk of the day studying and ate pizza for lunch from Costco up the road (the guy that did pass got some complementary pre-trip help from our trainer in the mean time). The Montana DMV is super small and intimate, so there isn't any kind of a waiting period which is nice and they make the whole process that much more smoother. Short post tonight, I need to brush up on the handbook before returning again tomorrow for another go.

Posted:  1 year, 3 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

My bad for the two orientation day 1 recaps, they both are identical in text but I thought the first one didn’t post confused.gif

Posted:  1 year, 3 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

2/10- Orientation Day 1 Well today was surprisingly more interesting than I thought it would be. The Wilson shuttle with our trainer Ryan in it came and picked up myself and three other classmates of mine promptly at 7 am which gave me enough time beforehand to grab some delicious continental breakfast from the buffet bar downstairs around 6:40 ish (seriously if you're considering coming to Wilson's CDL school you will be staying at the Days Inn and they have some decent options for breakfast so plan to get up for it daily). The weather in Missoula for this week is between 28-39 degrees with clouds that ooze snow at their own convenience, which apparently according to my trainer Ryan is " on the warmer side" whatever that means (the Vegas native in me screams silently haha). Once we arrived at the facility which is up the road from the hotel, we all piled into the training room and proceeded to take a building tour which yielded some friendly interactions with the wonderful folks of Wilson's recruiting, IT, and fleet manager crews. Mr. Wilson himself was in the building with us today, but for some reason we did not get to meet him (understandable, but definitely adds to the small family feel knowing that all the staff and the man upstairs is aware of your arrival and welcomes you to the team on a first name basis). 8 AM came and went as we all piled back into the shuttle van with Ryan to go take our urine drug tests up the road, it took no time at all for all four of us to finish and soon enough we were back on the road riding through snow to get back to the facility. Once we arrived, we all filed into a small classroom and proceeded to start handling the "adult" portion of the week which was the paperwork/contract signing. Wilson is pretty generous with what they're asking for out of you assuming you follow through with staying the year requirement as payment for obtaining your CDL through them. In the event that you wish not to however, they will bill you about 3,500 if you do not stay for at least 6 months and then about half of that if you leave in say like 8 months or so via weekly $73 deductions. Once all the paperwork was nearly done, we got the chance to do our JHA's which required us to head back out onto the lot and into a fresh sheet of snow for exercises that included: 3 points of contact with the truck, trailer inspections, drop and hook instructions, and some cooler things like checking out the inside of the truck and learning how to lower and raise the top bunk which we'll call home during our 2/3 week individual training sessions (fun fact: the beds in their specific trucks are full sized, I had a hell of a time trying to pre-buy sheets for a bed I never knew the size on so FYI in case anyone was curious). After we completed our JHA's, Ryan took the four of us to lunch at a place called Tacos Del Sol out here in Missoula which wasn't bad, but it wasn't great either (I had a steak burrito in which the tortilla bottomed out before I could eat half so it turned into a taco salad which no big deal... free food is free food). After lunch, we made our way back to the facility and spent the rest of the day studying for our Montana permit tests (which we take tomorrow morning) along with reviewing some online training videos. Class ended at about 4:30pm and we were dropped back off at the Days Inn at which time I decided to walk across the way to the McDonalds/Gas Station combo to grab some dinner. Not a bad first day..hopefully all four of us can pass our permit tests on the first go tomorrow because if we do, we all get to go out with our trainers by this FRIDAY instead of next Monday which is pretty sweet! Till next time.

Posted:  1 year, 3 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

2/10: Orientation Day 1 Today was actually surprisingly decent (I don't know what I was expecting but I had a great time despite all odds). Class starts at 7 am sharp and by that I mean the Wilson shuttle bus scoops you up from the Days Inn lobby and drives you up the road to the facility for the grand tour. I decided to take advantage of the continental breakfast the hotel offered and i'm happy to say I will be visiting downstairs every day for the next week as the little buffet is fantastic (waffles, different cereals, oatmeal, you name it they have it). The weather in Missoula currently right now is between 28-35 degrees with snow covering every surface of every surrounding area (which i'm told is on the warmer side from my trainer but with me being from Vegas i'm unfazed to hear that haha). Once my small class of four people arrived to the site (6 was the magic number for this week but 2 somehow never made it), we were settled into a training room with a bunch of computers along side our trainer whose name is Ryan. The first thing we did was tour the site and were welcomed by a bunch of friendly staff members who really put their own personal spin on how they got to know each of our first names (nice touch in my opinion, really adds to the small family owned feel). Mr. Wilson himself was in fact in the building today, however we were unable to meet him but I heard good things about him and his methods from Ryan who seems to be a nice dude who means well. After the building tour, we rejoined Ryan in the shuttle van around 8ish and at that point it was off to take our drug tests (urine only) up the block. The drug test for four took next to no time and we were soon back at the facility inside of now a smaller classroom reviewing the binder full of required paperwork like the 1 year agreement that many seem concerned about. Ryan made sure to read verbatim every single page of the contract along with... well.. every single page of every single document in the binder which I didn't mind seeing as we had nothing but time to spare for the rest of the day. In my opinion, Wilson truly does want you to complete the year of schooling/working with them but if that cannot happen, they make it very easy to pay them back the 3,500 or so that you will have to pay if you leave anytime before 6 months (after 6 months you pay half that amount if you leave in $72 weekly deductions). Shortly after signing on the dotted line, Ryan then took us out on the yard to perform some JHA's that included things like: 3 points of contact getting out of the truck, drop and hook procedures, and we even got to check out the inside of a reefer trailer which might I add is kind of hard to climb in and out of when you have snow up to your ankles but we all got through it with no complaints. Lunch time came quicker than I envisioned after a little more desk work and we all hopped back into the shuttle van and headed to a place called Taco Del Sol out here in Montana. The place is alright, I had a 14" steak burrito that bottomed out before I could finish it so it turned into more of a taco salad than anything. After lunch, we all returned back to the center and continued to work more on various things like studying for our Montana permit tests (which we take tomorrow morning) and training videos which take up a good 2 hours as well. If everything goes according to plan with all four of us (if we all pass the written stuff tomorrow), then the day should consist of some pre-trip help and we all will be out with our trainers by this FRIDAY! The day ended around 4:30pm for us and as we all returned back to the hotel for the evening, I took the time to walk over to the McDonalds/ gas station across the way to grab some dinner for the next few evenings while the sun sort of peaked through the clouds (once it gets late out, you're probably not going to want to head out as its kind of dark on the roadways surrounding the hotel). All in all, no complaints here.. tomorrow's another day!

Posted:  1 year, 3 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

Welp, I’ve made it to Montana after a few rocky Alaskan Air flights and managed to check myself in to the Days Inn that Wilson prearranges in advance. Hotel is about as average as it gets but it serves its purpose for the week (breakfast bar looks good however). It also appears that I may be lucky enough to not have a roommate for my time here so that’s always a nice little bonus to offset me having to order something for dinner via DoorDash which took about an hour to get to me. Tomorrow’s the first day of orientation so it’s time to call it an early night, till next time!

Posted:  1 year, 3 months ago

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Griffin CDL Diary- Wilson Logistics

The time has finally come for me to trade in the comfort of 70-degree sunny Las Vegas weather for the start of my CDL training with Wilson Logistics in 24-degree snow filled Missoula, Montana. To say that I am excited is an understatement however, I do feel a bit uncertain of what is to come as anyone would be considering I’ve been born and raised in Vegas for the last 25 years and know fairly little of the world outside of everything being open and at my disposal 24 hours a day. To kind of give some background on how I arrived at this, I know my way around the world of electricity and throughout adversity within the field I decided that change is good and trucking could be the calling that I've been dreaming of so here we go. As fun as it may seem, I am fortunate enough to be taking an 8 hour flight out to orientation instead of the coveted 33 hour Greyhound bus ride that is offered as an alternative so that within itself already gives me some hope that i'll be fresh enough to meet the rest of my peers with a decent attitude bright and early on Monday morning. I'll update again once I've actually reached a point where I've got some good stuff to share, i'm sure my Las Vegas-Seattle-Missoula travel plans will yield some "interesting" occurrences smile.gif

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