something about trucking…




mt-hood

Originally uploaded by jayfherron.

Learning how to drive tractor trailer trucks was a salvation to me-the freedom to find work and to be able to work largely alone with out interference from others. It was’nt easy work-sometimes it got right angriveating…but many times when I’d be driving north on interstate 5 and the views of Mt.Hood started growing in the windshield it put it all in another perspective. There are guys that spend thousands to go to college to get a job in a high rise somewhere and their view is always the same day after day. My office was rolling everyday and the views from my window changed with every breath taking mile.
The northwest is wide and open. Once you leave Laramie and head west towards Utah the land seems to go forever and nobody has tried to cover it with buildings every where-its all a vista of the power of creation.
I used to love going to Portland-I’m not certain why , but there was a truck stop there called ‘Jubitz Truck Plaza’ which is anything but a plaza…but never the less-it was a neat place for a trucker. It was more than that. It had the kind of parking lot that was a scence out of an old John Wayne timber man movie about the wild west days of logging and gold panning in the glory days of the 1800’s…the old parking lot was a mud pit when it rained or snowed and a dust bowel when ever it got the chance to dry out , which seemed to be never.
You really could’nt find a place that great out on the road-they had a seperate building where drivers could wash clothes and take showers…there was a lounge that you could wait in while your laundry was going or while you were waiting for a phone call from your dispatcher and they served cold beers there no charge right in that lounge. Across the way there was a motel and the restaurant and next to the restaurant was another lounge but larger to where it was divided into two spaces-one was a theatre showing recents films for free…the other side a dance hall always filled with good music and plenty of fun.
Jubitz’s was’nt the only truck stop that took care of a driver like that. Somewhere in the middle of Wyoming is a place called Little America-the largest ruck stop anywhere and the only one with a zip code and a spot in Rand-McNalley. The place is so large they have a long limo that drives around and picks up the drivers and takes them to certain sections of the place…which is complete with a five star steak house and several other places to eat in assorted areas. The showers there are fit for a king….but the signs start about 800 miles out and taunt you for nearly two days….little America,hot showers only 675 more miles to go!! little America,hot showers only 595 more miles.
I was fortunate to learn this trade and to have seen my home from coast to coast and from border to border and to see the people from all parts of life. I’ve been a blessed person in many ways because this was a way that I could make a living and live with my fears and yet see the poverty in our country this way also a way to be able to cope with much of my own life.

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