Monthly Archives: November 2013

Problems in Drive-Away and some thoughts on Joe.

I spent an hour this morning going through my 11,000 plus photos for today’s topic.  I got distracted in my task.  Not anything new with me and my brain functioning.  I get distracted very easily.

Focus, Leslie.  FOCUS!  Okay, now that that is out of the way….

We had picked up trucks on October 27th in Southaven, Mississippi.  Southaven is right on the state line of Tennessee and Mississippi.  My boom pump had gone Kaput before my last delivery in South Sioux City, Nebraska on October 25th.  Had to hire a massive forklift to lift my boom enough to take the chains loose for the back truck to be lowered to the ground.  That was $200 and I was so freaked out about the whole matter I forgot to take pictures.

Arriving in Southaven to hook up trucks going to Portales, New Mexico we had to hire a wrecker to lift my boom while it was attached between the two trucks.  The wrecker would lift the boom thus raising the back truck’s rear wheels off the ground.  Once up at the appropriate height the chains could be fastened around the rear frame of the truck and looped through the yoke of the boom.  This secures the back truck firmly and safely while driving the highways.

Wrecker to lift my boom

Wrecker to lift my boom

This was another $250 for about 10 minutes of work.  I think we are in the wrong business folks.

Nah.  I don’t think it would be financially feasible for us to cough up about $250,000 for one of these huge wrecker trucks to begin with.  The thought of scrabbling around on the ground in the rain, snow, ice, wind, hail, mud, and on 100 degree plus hot asphalt pavement to hook onto dead trucks at the side of the highway is not my idea of a days work.

What can I say?  I’m a wussy.  I like my comfort.  Don’t care for discomfort.

We were a little over 50 miles from the Oklahoma/Texas line when the water temperature gauge on my dash began rising.  170 degrees is the normal operating temperature of the radiator water in big trucks.  Sometimes 180 degrees.  Not much higher than that.  Sometimes the temperature will rise to 220 degrees when driving on roads with steep inclines or there is a moderate to stiff tail wind which does not allow for air flow through the radiator grill to keep the engine cool.  When water temperatures reach 220 degrees there is an engine fan that kicks in to cool off the engine.

The gauge was  hovering around 225 degrees.  We were going up some pretty steep hills in western Oklahoma and eastern Texas.  We had some pretty gusty south winds that day as well.  The temperature would go back down to 180 degrees and I just kept a close watch on the gauge as I continued down the road.

About 15 miles in Texas on I-40 I began to smell antifreeze.  Just little hints of it.  That only occurred when the temperature went up to 200 degrees.  About 40 miles into Texas on I-40 I really began to smell antifreeze.  The temperature gauge was steadily on the 220 mark and now I was getting concerned.  About 10 miles ahead of us is a Safety Rest Area.  Over the hand held radios I told Joe to stop at the rest area, I told him of my over heating problem and we needed to take a look at it.

By the time we got to the rest area I had antifreeze all over the right side of my front truck and it had sprayed out to my back truck.  The stench of antifreeze was highly noticeable now.  We had to switch the trucks out at the rest area.  Joe had to take his front truck off for the switch.  Not having a proper operating boom was a pain in the butt.  We managed to get the job done though.

Delivering at the location in Portales I talked with the shop manager and informed him of the over heating problem with the NOW back truck.  These four trucks were supposed to be put to work that afternoon or the next morning.  This little set back would make work in Portales a little bit of a problem.

The shop manager tipped the hood and had a look at the engine.  To my surprise he said “This is an easy fix!”  Seems that a hose blew off somewhere near the rest area in Texas.

Hose piece missing from the coolant line.

Hose piece missing from the coolant line.

This shop manager knows his way around the guts and inner workings of these truck engines.  He said he looked for the tell tale sign of the area most covered in antifreeze, which is the white coated area on the red engine.  That is where he saw the missing hose piece.

That's the problem

That’s the problem

So, after all the heart thumping adventures of the month it was a relief to know that my vigilance had been warranted and no damage had been done to the engine.

Okay, okay.  You are probably wondering what any of this has to do with Joe…other than the fact that he is MY HERO and can make anything work.

When I first signed on to do Drive-Away at Coldiron Companies in 2001 I was asked by a person working there “What do you see in Joe?  He is such a scary guy!”  That question stumped me.  Joe?  Scary?  What is this person talking about?  Joe isn’t scary.  He can be a bit intimidating at times….especially if you don’t know him.  Okay, he can be intimidating at times EVEN if you do know him.

I’m not going to say that his “Bark is worse than his bite” because there are times when his bark is just as bad as his bite.  Don’t believe me?  Well you might want to ask a police officer who has encountered Joe and not been cowed by the “Official” nature of the badge.

Joe has one of those faces that makes a person want to tread carefully upon first meeting him.

Joe in his work face.

Joe in his work face.

Here is a closer view of Joe and his work face.

 

Joe with his normal relaxed face.

Joe with his normal relaxed face.

You don’t get to see the Joe I know.  The one that has a smile that can warm a person’s heart.  Makes me all mushy when I see it.

Joe's smiling face

Joe’s smiling face.

Then there is the little boy that comes out of him from time to time that makes me laugh so hard that I choke.  He played with an onion bag one afternoon and  had me in tears from laughing so hard.

Joe with an onion bag

Joe with an onion bag

Then a couple years back he was going to be cooking a ham for his New Year’s Day feast.  That bag went over his head and he tried to look scary.  Didn’t work.

Joe with another bag over his head

Joe with another bag over his head

This crazy and scary dude is the man that I love.  He puts up with my mood swings and my reluctance to work.  He lets my complaints roll off his shoulders and keeps me going everyday.  I am very blessed to have this man as my husband.  Thank you Lord for my Joe.

Is there someone in your life that you have been blessed with?  Let them know that you think they are AWESOME!

Leslie

 

 

 

 

 


Rumors of a serial barn killer abound in the northern mid west.

The quiet little communities of northwestern Nebraska, southwestern South Dakota, and southwestern Minnesota are not the place one would think of as a hot spot for rampant carnage.  The harvested fields lay wide open along the highways exposing acres of open ground.

Near Winnebago, Nebraska

Near Winnebago, Nebraska

In the barn community there are rumors.  Rumors of a serial barn killer.  The evidence is unsettling.  These two in Nebraska have the barns in an uproar.

US 81 in Nebraska

US 81 in Nebraska

This barn in Minnesota has survived an attack but is in critical condition.

I-90 in Minnesota

I-90 in Minnesota

Investigators are doing their best to sift through the witness accounts.  An attempt is being made to figure out what is fact and what is fiction in this ongoing investigation.  Interviews with these two witnesses seem to be part of the problem.  Each has a different story to tell about what they know.

Near Columbus, Nebraska on US 81

Near Columbus, Nebraska on US 81

Another group of investigators have tried to interview these barns and have had very little success.  It seems, according to a source, the atmosphere here is one of gathering together and not saying much.

US 81 in South Dakota

US 81 in South Dakota

A couple of investigators have had to deal with a small group of paranoid barns.  These barns have voiced their concern of an evil monster stalking them all.  One of the barns, the one in the forefront, has even stated that this is the work of the devil and has even seen it.

US 81 in Nebraska

US 81 in Nebraska

Investigators are not discounting the rumor of the devil in these accounts.  In fact, one investigator has actually seen it.

I-90 in South Dakota

I-90 in South Dakota

I-90 in South Dakota

I-90 in South Dakota

Getting information from the barn community is a hit and miss proposition for the investigators.  This barn is not saying anything.  In fact, this barn didn’t even want to talk to investigators.

I-90 in Minnesota

I-90 in Minnesota

This barn tried to hid their face from the cameras during an interview and only spoke in whispers to the investigators.

I-90 in Minnesota

I-90 in Minnesota

The deaths of these two barns have been under investigation for some time.  It is presumed these two had been among the first of the serial barn killers victims.

I-90 in Minnesota

I-90 in Minnesota

Investigators have had their hands full in dealing with barns that are so frightened by the events that all the barns do is scream and cry.

I-90 in Wisconsin

I-90 in Wisconsin

While some barns have been helpful there has been one that has been quite rude.  Demanding the investigators to get off their property.

I-90 in Wisconsin

I-90 in Wisconsin

This barn would not come out and talk with investigators.  Preferring to stay behind a screen and out of view of the photographers.

I-90 in Minnesota

I-90 in Minnesota

This barn, when interviewed, said that it had seen the whole thing and was living in terror.  Protection teams have been posted to keep this barn safe.  This barn says that it has photographic proof of the barn killer.

I-90 in South Dakota

I-90 in South Dakota

This is the proof the barn shared with investigators.

US 81 in South Dakota

US 81 in South Dakota

Okay folks, this is the last of my barn photos.  If there are any people that read my blog and are the owner(s) of any of these barns, not highly likely though, I hope I have not offended you.  If, in the unlikely event, you do spot your barn and it is not located where I have indicated on the photo remarks please feel free to leave a comment with the proper location.

These photos were taken over two weeks ago and I don’t have a very good memory….especially if it has been more than 5 minutes :/


Barns seen in my travels through Nebraska and South Dakota

It has been far too long since my last post. We have been out west in Texas and New Mexico the past couple of weeks. No barns out there.

We picked up trucks in Commerce City, Colorado – a suburb of Denver – and took them to Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin. Delivered them this morning.

We were back in “Barn country” 🙂

Here are four photos of just a smidgen of barns I’ve seen and photographed this trip. These are the long shots followed by the cropped version.

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Here is the cropped photo of the barn. This one has a wide toothy grin.

20131109-164651.jpg

By the time I crop the photos some of the resolution is destroyed, so forgive me for bad shots.

Next is a farm yard in Nebraska on US-81 north of Columbus, Nebraska.

20131109-164958.jpg

This is the cropped photo. This guy is one I would not like to meet in the dark. :/

20131109-165131.jpg

Going further north in Nebraska on US-81, nearing the South Dakota state line was this farm.

20131109-165243.jpg

I think this barn got surprised! Maybe the scary barn did it.

20131109-165429.jpg

The last farm is in South Dakota on US-81. There are several structures grouped in this one.

20131109-165618.jpg

I think of this as a momma and her child 🙂

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You guys weigh in here and tell me what you think of these barn faces. Joe says I’m silly but what does he know anyway 🙂

Enjoy your weekend. We are deadheading to Pennsylvania.

Leslie