The Big Dawg had to be called out

342 miles yesterday. From Wichita Falls, Texas to Tucumcari, New Mexico. We were making miles, I was listening to an audiobook, all was right with the world.



Pushing buttons and twisting knobs to find out what the “Engine Fault Code” is to make a slightly educated guess at the problem I got this…


Hunting through the myriad of selections that generally apply I got this….


Ya, right. Find the owner’s manual. Of course every truck we move come complete with an owner’s manual. NOT.

These trucks have automatic transmissions. When I pressed the “D” button to drive forward, after releasing the air brakes…


Nothing happened. When I depressed the gas pedal the engine didn’t even rev up. Now what the stinkin’ heck do I do?!

Call All-Rite Towing and Truck Repair is what Joe does.

The man that came out tried to figure out the problem via his mental road map of truck oddities.

Each truck built from 2002 and on has a computer in the engine. A “Diagnostic Port” is located on the lower left of the dash console just below the ignition switch. The previous owners of this truck removed the Data Port.


Enter the “Big Dawg”. All-Rite Towing’s monster truck.


The driver had to get behind my truck in the parking space to get my truck connected and towed out of Love’s and off to their shop.









The guy tied off my steering wheel…


Joe blocked traffic so the All-Rite guy could back out of my parking spot and head for his shop.


Joe is a “Haggler”. The cost to be towed 3-1/2 miles was quoted at $425. Joe got them down to $350. With all the repair costs so far: $198 for Joe’s tire; $159 for my radiator hose fix; and now the $350 tow charge these trucks purchased at auction are going to be expensive to the new owner. Not to mention the costs involved for our “Downtime” and hotels.

So now what are we going to do?! I’m not sure. Joe’s back truck has a “Check Engine” light on as well. BUT that truck still has the Diagnostic Port so the mechanics can run a check on the Fault Codes to find the problem.

Three things can happen.

1. My truck can easily be fixed and it is back to the highway headed to Oakland, California.

2. Fix Joe’s back truck and we switch them out. Joe will tow the truck I’m driving and I will then drive the other truck.

3. Leave the truck I’m driving in Tucumcari for the Oakland people to make arrangements later to go get it and I finish the trip as a passenger.

We haven’t had a “Trip from Hell” in quite a while. Seems we were due for one.

Further updates will be added tomorrow. I know, you can hardly wait ๐Ÿ™‚

Hope your day is better. And Maureen, your car problems have reached the “Three in a Row” cycle so you should be good now for a long while.



About Message In A Fold

I am an over the road truck driver in Drive-Away Transport part of the year, and the sole bookkeeper of this operation the other part of the year. I do a lot of whining until I can get in my craft room and play with paper and glue. View all posts by Message In A Fold

12 responses to “The Big Dawg had to be called out

  • Maureen Mathis

    Don’t know about that. When Shannon was driving us to Wal Mart, she hopped a curb while deciding which lane of parking spaces to drive down. She was so upset, but when I showed her that it didn’t seem to do any damage, she felt a little better. Embarrassed but better. I told her that the worst thing that happened was that the alignment got a little out of whack. I think I’m throwing away everyone’s keys for awhile!

    • Message In A Fold

      Well…you have something you can say as an inside joke ๐Ÿ˜€

      “Carissa’s driving” ๐Ÿ˜€ is what we say when we drive over curbs or watch others do it.

      Carissa is her Mother’s daughter. We both are spatially challenged. We think we have room until we find ourselves bumping into the parking curbs or running over curb corners in some shopping areas.

      So you can say “Shannon’s driving” when anyone curbs it ๐Ÿ˜€

      Love you – Leslie

  • pati

    Omgosh!!! What next ? Hopefully things will get better now, had enough crap happen. Ok, now the bad should be worked out, n things should start getting better again. Rest up, machines seem to be alive lately, love u sis

    • Message In A Fold

      I know! Attack of the machines. Or maybe Haywire.

      You know….there may be some kind of mass rebellion by the machinery because of the unusually high temperatures. They don’t want to get all hot and sweaty anymore than we do.

      Have you had any more offers from hunky young men to go for a rude in the fields? *eyebrow wiggle wiggle* ๐Ÿ˜€

      Love you Sis

      • pati

        No!, lol, nothing exciting around here, just work. Its supposed to cool down a bit eventually, hope so, not soon enough for me though. Love u sis, dont be working too hard.

      • Message In A Fold

        Well so far not working too hard isn’t gonna happen this week.

        Broke down AGAIN!!

        It has cooled off here in New Mexico and we went through a bit of rain. The cooler temps are fantastic! Hope you get to enjoy some real soon ๐Ÿ™‚

        Dang :-(. No hunky farm guys in your life to tell Les about ๐Ÿ˜€

        Love you Sis

  • Pati Mishler

    What was that other saying you both said, somebody’s wife? Ya ya ya, i know, i got that WAY wrong, someone at work made a comment about this sort of thing, you know, Carrisa’s driving, and somebody’s wife.

    You know, when you REALLY hear something wrong, and DANG it, i COULD’T remember what you and Joe said, sure killed the moment, lol.

    No, no more offer’s from hunky young men, DANG it, ( lol )

    We REALLY have that things down pat, at work, someone says something, someone else say’s WHAT!! did you say, my old boss in the kitchen asked me the other day, WHAT!!! did you say?

    I knew better than to say anything but, WHAT did you think i said? What she said back was REALLY off the wall, SHE is really off the wall, so, i said what i said before, oh, she was so dissapointed, HA, so glad i dissapointed her.

    Ok, i will be nice, only if i HAVE to. lol

    The hotter it gets outside, the harder it is for machines and humans alike to function, THEN, we all REALLY all go ( haywire) sorry!! couldnt resist, ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    Love you sis. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Message In A Fold

      “Theresa’s wife”

      That is our inside joke because of my wonky hearing.

      To help you remember just think of “Theresa’s Wife” and that ought to do it.

      We were living in Utah. Carissa was 16, nearly 17, and had her Driver License. We were out of town on business and left Carissa to be the chauffer for the family left at home.

      The pickup she got to drive was getting to be unreliable and it died on her. 1/4 mile from our gate which was up a fairly steep hill.

      A high school teacher and his wife found Carissa in distress so he helped her get the pickup pushed to the gate and in our yard.

      Evidently this teacher did not speak lovingly to his wife and Carissa reported that he “Treats his wife like sh*t”.

      What I heard was “Theresa’s wife likes sh*t”. I had to ask for clarity because that made no sense to me in the context of the conversation.

      Ergo – Theresa’s wife. Nuff said ๐Ÿ˜€

      I thought you were in housekeeping. Are you also working in the kitchen as well? Or just buddies and hang out until your shift starts or after it ends?

      I’m glad to hear you are making friends at work. Have you and Les found a bowling team to hook up with like you did in Tribune?

      This Nosy Parker has to know that her Sister is being accepted in her new community.

      Love you Sis.

      • pati

        Thank u sis, I am still in housekeeping. I see the kitchen boss here n there as I move all over the hospital cleaning my places. No, we havent started bowling again yet, not sure we will. We will see as time goes on. So sorry u n joe are having such a hard time. Les just grins about my hunk stories. Take care, b careful, love u both.

  • gardenpinks

    Hell’s Bells Leslie now that’s three things! Good for Joe haggling the price down, the new owners are going to wonder whether these trucks are worth it. As our daughter’s mechanic husband would say it sounds as though these trucks have had “the t*ts ragged off ’em” Or another saying ridden hard and put away wet! Hope the truck can be sorted and you are both on your way again.

    Love and hugs
    Lynn xx

    • Message In A Fold

      These trucks are trouble with a capital T

      The owner is about fed up with all the troubles and ready to put them back in the auction instead of having them on his property.

      And we are not even half way to Oakland yet!

      Love you – Leslie

  • gardenpinks

    PS love that sky in the last photo – very moody!


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