I have mentioned on this blog once or twice what I do for a living.
I deal with truck drivers.
You know, the big 18-wheelers. The guys and gals behind the wheels of those trucks that pretty much bring you everything you’re looking at/sitting on/are enjoying this very minute. I’ve been in transportation for, oh well, ever since I graduated from Auburn. I just sort of fell into it; I didn’t major in logistics or anything remotely related to anything in transportation. So I’ve been doing this thing for about eight years in all different sorts of capacities. I’ve dealt with the rental and leasing side of it; I’ve recruited; I’ve dispatched; I’ve been in customer service. All of it. And while most days it brings me challenges (ok, like every day), it’s a really good job.
Think about it. These people leave their families for days, sometimes weeks and months at a time. They are on the road dealing with all of us “four wheelers,” all of the time. That guy that cut you off this morning, and you’re still pissed off about it? Take that and times it by like eighty million, and that’s what these guys are dealing with. AND they’re doing it in vehicles that weight 80,000 pounds and are longer than 53 feet, because 53 feet is just the trailer. They are safer on the roads than we are; they know how to drive better than we ever will. They drive through rain storms, through snow storms, high winds, dust storms…They have to follow strict (super strict) government regulations on how much they can drive in a day.
There are team drivers — yes that means you are in a truck all day, every day with another human being. There are a lot of husband/wife teams. Married folks, can you imagine being that close to your spouse all the time?!? If you can, power to you, because I know for a fact it would drive me crazy. There are solo drivers — they are pretty alone the entire time they’re out on the road. Can you imagine that?? You can only talk on the phone so much in a day, which they have to do on a headset or risk a ginormous fine from the DOT.
I have mad respect for truck drivers. They make the world go round, you guys, whether you want to believe it or not. And when you’re working with them, you become close so close to them, and eventually consider them friends. Point being, when they come through town, you go out to a bar with them, take shots and drink some with them. Granted — they don’t get to do this all the time — they are not allowed to drink a lot, and a lot of them don’t drink at all. And this picture was on a home time down here in Birmingham, and they were not going out to get in their truck that night or the next day. I put this disclaimer in, because these guys didn’t go out drinking and then get in their truck and drive around.
While in trucking, you learn about these people; you hear their struggles; you hear their life stories, and then eventually they stop becoming your drivers and start becoming your friends.
So, moral of the story guys, thank a truck driver, because they rock.