It’s a cold morning in upstate New York.  The air isn’t the only thing that’s frozen.  Our projected deliveries for Celadon this week are now on hold, through no fault of the hardworking driver who was doing his best to navigate the snowy highways.

Speaking of snow, when one event causes a schedule delay it creates a snowball effect that impacts everything down the line.  Thursday’s delivery in Atlanta that made us wait 3 hours while the shipper’s clerical error was resolved resulted in a late pickup at our next stop in Lebanon, TN.

We spent the night Friday at a truck stop in Pennsylvania.  Mike started driving at 1:30am as we began to see the first edge of the snowfall moving up from the south.  As the morning progessed and the snow got heavier Mike had to keep stopping to clean off the wiper blades.  About 6:00am at a rest stop where he had pulled over to get out and clean the wipers he came back in the truck with the news that one of his tires was flat.

Since it was so early in the morning and we weren’t close to a big city it took awhile for Celadon to get a repair truck out to us.  We lost 4 hours with that incident.  Once we were back on the road it was slow going as the snowfall continued through most of the day.  

By noon we arrived at the delivery site in Johnstown NY.  This delivery was a drop and hook which means we didn’t have to be scheduled for unloading.  We could just unhook the trailer in a designated spot, find an empty Celadon trailer in the lot (amongst the many empties that belong to numerous other companies that deliver to this Walmart warehouse), hook up to the empty and be on our way.

Meanwhile Mike was coordinating with Celadon and the shipper in Syracuse where we needed to pick up the next load.  Unfortunately, this one was a live load and we would be late for the originally scheduled time.  Because of the holiday weekend they couldn’t reschedule us until Tuesday and Celadon couldn’t find a different delivery for us either.

We hauled the empty trailer towards Syracuse, getting to a service plaza on the toll road just east of Utica, NY, before Mike ran out of driving hours.  There’s no reason to hit the road early today so we are enjoying a leisurely start to the morning.  We’ve got an exciting weekend planned for our “frozen” driving adventure.

Happy New Year!

Mike unhooking my friend the Thermo King trailer. I’ll make a new friend who will sing to me.
A tight squeeze backing the trailer into the narrow assigned spot but Mike is an expert.
Arriving at Walmart warehouse in Johnstown, NY
Getting the flat tire fixed.
Frozen Mohawk River.

An Inside Joke

If you’ve never had the pleasure of bunking in the top berth of a big rig that’s hauling a refrigerated trailer across the country you might not catch the humor in the above photo.  After a good chuckle, my comment was “that says it all.” Check out the photo from my previous blog and you will see that the trailer behind Mike’s Celadon tractor is a refrigerated unit just like this one.  And that small window at the top of the cab is where I can look out at the world when I’m in my bunk.  Which means that me and the Thermo King monster are up close and personal.  I wasn’t thinking of it’s constant roar as a song but now this joke might give me a better attitude.

I’ve found that a sense of humor is very helpful out on the highway.  It’s a rough life and easy to find things that upset and annoy you.  But as a sign I saw last night said “10 percent of life is what you make it and the other 90 percent is what it makes you.”  I’m aiming to not let this experience make  me a grumpy old woman who didn’t get her beauty rest.  Instead I will try to learn the Thermo King tune and by the end of this trip I might go home having made a new friend.