I truly mean a CRACK, and Joe’s confidence took a hit.
This trip is his first without me for the winter season. It has been a trial for him, physically and emotionally. He had about 200 miles left before delivering when he encountered an immovable object. A concrete pad.
He was backing into a spot between two other trucks in the hotel parking lot. Keeping track of some yellow steel barriers making sure to not hit them by backing in too far was his main goal. Little did he know the concrete pad would be the thing to cause damage to the back truck’s bumper. Crack it right in the center.
I helped him call around to find a Kenworth facility that would fix the bumper before he delivered the truck. All of the dealerships with body shops were backed up in work for the next two weeks.
Joe delivered the truck, letting the people know that 15 minutes away was a body shop that would have a bumper for them to replace the one he damaged but it would not happen right away.
Poor Joe. He was devastated. We both pride ourselves in taking care of the trucks we move. Even the ones that look like they will implode at the first pothole in the road.
When he called me that night to let me know of the bumper damage my poor Joe was sure he was going to be fired right then and there. Adding to his worsening trepidation was the cost involved in replacing the bumper. Everyone he called told him the cost would be around $3,000. Worse was the fact that all the places he called could not get him in right away to fix the bumper. The part would have to be ordered and shipped, then it would have to go to the paint shop which would take about two days to paint and dry, then it would have to be mounted on the truck which would take another six hours. All of this, he was told, could be started in two weeks.
My Joe was beside himself with misery and I could do nothing to make him feel better 😦 I could not even be there to wrap my arms around him 😦
The next morning he called our dispatch office to inform them of the damage. The chewing out he expected to get didn’t come. He also was not fired on the spot. Next was to face the owner of the company that bought the trucks. That went better than Joe expected and I was pleased to hear his confidence back when I talked with him later that same day.
After delivering in Akron, Ohio Joe deadheaded to Bethlehem, Pennsylvania to pick up two trucks going to Grand Island, Nebraska. Yesterday afternoon he called to report it only took him 2-1/2 hours to fully hook up. He has shaved off a half hour from his time in Dallas and he is happy.
Later in the afternoon he called to tell me about his next bit of mayhem. The bottom step of the truck he was towing danced around on the step hanger. He found a safe place to pull off the road and go back to see why the step was loose. The bolts that hold the step on were missing. That is something he would not have known EXCEPT had he crawled under the truck to inspect the underside of the step assembly.
A Highway Patrol officer stopped to see if he needed assistance. Joe told him what he was doing and was assured he had stopped at a good spot and to take his time in getting it fixed. The officer told Joe he admired him for stopping to check on the step. Had it come off the officer could have driven over the step and put a tire out. Joe told the officer that was not the worst of it. Had the step come fully loose, as light weight as it is, it could have flown into the windshield of a passing or following motorist and killed someone.
The step is safely inside the back truck. It will be reattached at the dealership in Grand Island after he delivers it.
So far this first week for Joe being out by himself has not been a very good one, to say the least. He did get a bit of good news. The truck company in Akron, Ohio has sent an email to our dispatch office praising Joe for the work he does for them. They don’t want to lose him and are going to fix the bumper “in house” to keep the costs down.
I am really proud of my husband. He has ethics and faces problems with honesty. He takes responsibility for things and does not go the easy way like other drivers do. Saying it was like that when he picked the truck up or some other foolishness. He has a reputation he is protecting and I’m so proud to be his wife.
While Joe is off being a road warrior I am going to take advantage of the flat surfaces in our home that I’ve cleaned off. I’m going to be filling them up with the stuff from my craft room. That place needs a good purging, cleaning, and organizing.
I hope to be able to get this done today. It definitely WON’T be the Flylady way that is for sure.