A bunch of useless crap
Published on November 19, 2010 By MasonM In Blogging

Tonight finds me parked in Lodi, CA after a very tiring day.

I started out at 5:00am CST and tried to make the best possible time for my delivery in Lodi. The wind continued to give me trouble with my tarps and I wound up stopping several times before the sun came up to replace broken tarp straps.

By the time I reached Sparks, which is just outside of Reno, pretty much all of my tarp traps were broken and I was out of spares. The rear tarp was shredded. I went into the truck stop and picked up 100' of nylon rope and used that to secure the tarps instead of the rubber straps of which about 100 of them had broken between Colorado Springs and Sparks. I just didn't see any point in buying more of them.

Once I had the tarps roped into place I set out again for Lodi. I had to make a couple of stops coming across Donner Pass as the winds were so strong they were even breaking the ropes. I've never had ropes break due to wind blowing the tarps before. The winds really were bad.

By the time I finally made it to the construction site in Lodi, a new water treatment plant being built, my tarps were trashed. In the process of being blown all over the place the tarps also rubbed some paint off the water filtration units I was hauling.

The guy understood, but still marked it down on the paperwork as damage. I did get him to add that there had been no driver error to cause the damage. "Can't control the wind" he said. Me, I was just covering my posterior.

It took about two hours to unload the units with a crane. By then I was starting to get a little short on time, mostly due to the many stops to re-secure the tarps. I had to get over to San Jose, about 100 miles away, to pick up a truck to haul back to Wisconsin.

California traffic being what it is, it took about 2 hours to get over there. At this point I hadn't eaten all day and it didn't look like I would be for some time yet.

The truck I was to pick up was sitting right out front when I pulled in to the place, so I figured this would be quick and easy.

Yeah, right.

The stupid thing wouldn't start. The batteries were deader than a politician's brain. We fooled around with a battery booster for a while but it was a no go. All we could do was hook up a charger and let it charge for a while.

I noticed a cafe across the street and figured I might wander over for a bite to eat. I guess the fellow saw what I was looking at and told me not to bother, they were only open for lunch and had closed already. Rats!

Well once the battery charger did it's thing for an hour or so I was finally able to get the truck started. That's when I discovered it had a serious problem with the steering. I have driven trucks, including big rigs, that didn't have power steering. The steering in this thing was absurdly difficult to turn.

It took a lot of maneuvering and two handed wrenching on the wheel to finally get the thing in position to back it onto my trailer. Once I finally got it on and positioned where I wanted it my arms were sore.

I chained the thing down as quickly as I could, reattached the front of the trailer, and set out back to Lodi as it had the only truck stop within a reasonable distance where I was likely to get a place to park for the night. Returning to Lodi was actually a bit out of my way, but only by 20 miles or so.

I got here around 7:00 PM CST, found a good parking spot right away, and went inside for a very much needed meal. Except for someone's horribly screaming infant a few seats behind me, the meal was excellent. Starvation makes pretty much anything taste good, I suppose.

Now that I am back in my truck I am utterly exhausted. I do not intend to set my alarm tonight but to just sleep until I wake. In all likelihood that will still be around 6:00 am CST, but as long as I feel I got enough sleep I will be ready to start rolling east tomorrow morning.

I am hoping to catch some good luck weather-wise, but the fact that it is currently raining here makes me wonder what is happening up on Donner. I guess I'll check the reports in the morning before I head out. I just don't want to know tonight as what I find out may cause me to lose some sleep.

But then, as tired as I am I don't think much of anything will cause me to lose sleep tonight.


Comments
on Nov 22, 2010

I have had one of those tarp straps break and snap back on me.  Not something I would want to to do for a grin!

It was a nice weekend here - mid 60s.  Time to check the Christmas lights and blow the leaves again!  Late fall - most of the leaves have not come down yet (in years past, most are down by now).  Which is not good since I just planted new seed.

on Nov 22, 2010

Dr Guy
I have had one of those tarp straps break and snap back on me.  Not something I would want to to do for a grin!

It was a nice weekend here - mid 60s.  Time to check the Christmas lights and blow the leaves again!  Late fall - most of the leaves have not come down yet (in years past, most are down by now).  Which is not good since I just planted new seed.

I'm sure those leaves will keep you busy for a while yet

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