It's a Team's Life
Is your glass half empty or half full?
There is an invisible fence dividing the people, those that are afraid of our current situation and those that are taking precautions and going about business. What I have found interesting is that people I would have thought would carry on and get the job done are almost devastated. Staying at home or only going out when they have to. Others who I thought would be the ones to stay and home and wait it out are out here running up and down the roads making lemonade out of lemons. Either situation is right as the ones that are in fear or have health conditions need to stay at home and weather out this mess.
One lady I spoke with that rides with her husband and is petrified that they might be robbed or get stranded away from home. They need to stay at home as that fear could lead to making a terrible decision. They are older, and their health is not the best, and I worry about them. When we can hear the fear in our friend's voices, it is heartbreaking.
Other drivers are just the opposite and are making money while there is money to be made. We are seeing rates drop, and what a load paid two weeks ago is not paying the same now. With fuel cheap and knowing what we need to make, we can run with the cheaper rates and still do just fine. This is also a time to know what we need to make each day to be profitable.
Our thoughts are to run while we can, and if freight dries up, we will go home till we are needed again. If there is no freight to be had, it will be much easier to wait it out at home then on the road.
I have found myself marveling over how fast we can move across the country as we are not getting slowed down for traffic congestion. We have not found ourselves in stop and go traffic for weeks, and that includes the Las Angeles, CA, area. What I have not seen are the ghost towns that people have talked to me about. I have decided my idea of a ghost town, remember I am from Arizona, and we had authentic ghost towns, is not what others think of as a ghost town. When we went through Portland, OR last week the traffic was lighter, but there were a lot of cars out and about, and the same went for Seattle, WA. Either there are a lot of essential workers, or many did not get the memo to stay home and thus creating a ghost town.
We have been to all types of businesses from Orlando up to Pennsylvania out to Los Angeles to Seattle, and it is business as usual. At a few that need to look at our driver's licenses, the gate guard has used gloves.
Not one shipper or receiver has worn masks are gloves to this point. Is that going to change? I am sure it will, but at this time we have been to a lot of hot stops, and it is business as usual. I take that back one lady did have a mask and gloves on, and before she got done with our paperwork, all of that came off as she could not get the job done with all that protective gear on. Other drivers have talked about having their temperature taken and filled out forms stating they are not sick, but as of yet, we have not had that happen.
We are taking the precautions we deem necessary. We are washing our hands often, and they feel dry and ready to start chapping. A friend gave us a bottle of Clorox disinfectant wipes that I use on the steering wheel and everything we touch in the front of the truck. I have cleaner I use in the sleeper to keep it clean. Gloves are used when getting fuel and punching in the numbers. We have a few masks if needed but as of yet have not worn them. We also take our daily vitamins and have added a Vitamin C pill.
One thing we are not doing is listening to the lies on the radio and on the TV that show the worst of the worst and call that commonplace. We are looking out our windshield and calling a spade a spade, and we will continue to do this. Our glass is half full, and we are very thankful we are truck drivers and are still able to do our job. Texas and Squeaky have no clue about anything going on in the world, and they are happy taking one day at a time. They keep us grounded and laughing at their antics.
Bob & Linda Caffee
Saint Louis MO
Expediters since January 2005
Expediting isn't just trucking, it's a lifestyle;
Expediting isn't just a lifestyle, it's an adventure;
Expediting isn't just an adventure, it's a job;
Expediting isn't just a job, it's a business.