An older beauty–a black-lacquered Pete (Peterbilt) called “Black Moria.” That’s another thing about truckers: They often christen their trucks with favorite names.
Why might you be interested in Grandpa and the Truck website? Because you’ll learn about the facinating world of truckers–especially those long-haul mavericks of the highways. But not in a boring sense.
How do I know? I’m not a trucker and until I met my husband and lived with him for 20 years, I knew nothing about these folks and their industry. What I discovered fascinated me.
Quite simply, the drivers of the big rigs occupy a whole parallel universe to that of the rest of us. They’re gone for weeks on end, to some of the farthest destinations in our nation. And when they come home, they’re often there for a brief duration, off again, at the next phone call directing them to the next run.
As such, trucker families develop real aversion to the phones.
What’s life like on the road? Well, big truck stops like the Flying J, TA, and Petro are waystations for truckers, enabling them to replenish fuel, get food, use the facilities (showers, beds, and laundry facilities are available.) There’s one in Idaho that boasts “Biggest Truck Stop in US” rights, smack dab in the center of the country.
Truckers talk to each other on their CB radios to distract themselves as best they can from one of a trucker’s worst nightmares–fatigue. That continual din of the big motor can be mesmerizing, putting one to sleep. Add long hours at the wheel (11 is the limit in most states) and stuck traffic, and a trucker’s got a powerful cocktail for nodding off.
So, chatting each other up on the CB helps while away the time. What’s CB mean? Citizen Band radio. It’s the one the truckers use and they pick each other’s voices up from miles away. Do they really know to whom they speak? No…Not unless they’re in the same visual landscape as when one trucker might say: “I’m in the maroon Volvo, going south, at mile marker 146.”
Otherwise, they’re ships in the night, and it’s all quite anonymous. But it’s less lonely just to hear that other voice–especially another trucker who lives the lifestyle.
Why are truckers so important to us all? They move America’s products. Look around your home. Every single item has been trucked in, by a trucker, at one point or another.
That’s how important they are to America’s well-being.