The first few hours on the truck with Roy were probably some of the best and the worst. The best part, we had not seen each other since April and it was June… 2 long months and we were finally together again. So good seeing him after that long!!! On the flip side, I had been awake since 3 am and had been in airports, on the plane all day, being delayed two hours getting to Nashville, needless to say, as happy as I was to see my husband, I was beyond exhausted. I lasted about two hours until sleep was begging me to come visit. I gave in happily.
If you are not familiar with these rigs, you might not know that they have sleepers in them. When the guys and gals are working they will drive for a certain amount of hours and then have to rest for a certain amount of hours. This is a requirement of the Department of Transportation, DOT. They are allowed 14 hours of “on time”, with 11 of it being actual drive time and 3 being for other miscellaneous work time. Then they have to be off for 10 hours. This is when they sleep, eat, shower, etc.
The comfort factor in Roy’s home away from home was much better than anticipated. The bed is actually quite comfy. Too bad it’s only comfy for one person. The mattress was bigger than a twin, but not as big as a full. Even as tired as we were, neither one of us slept very well and Roy actually ended trying to sleep part of the night in his driver’s seat chair. It was not good. This one night made us realize, we were going to have to sleep separately. Again, this was good and bad. The good was that his sleeper was actually a bunk setup, so there was another bed. The bad was that we couldn’t sleep together. Sometimes you just gotta roll with the punches. Little did I know, that sleeping in the top bunk was going to present yet another battle for me…
As I explained earlier, Roy’s truck has a bunk bed sleeper. It also has closet and cabinet space. He has a refrigerator and a microwave. All of these amenities are what makes it easier for him to live in his truck. It’s actually quite nice. The only downside is that there is no bathroom. That took some getting used to, as I am sure any professional driver will attest to when they first began. The company Roy works for really does a great job of providing for their people, as they have several service centers in a variety of locations. These service centers provide showers, lounges, laundry facilities and garages for maintenance of their trucks. Some are much better than others and even provide additions amenities to make the driver’s stay more comfortable. I love how the company does this, since often a driver might be in one of these centers for anywhere from one night to almost a week. This way they have a place to go to get out of their trucks. And I can now say, after doing it, there is a time when it does feel like those walls are closing in and you just gotta get out!
So back to the bathroom. It’s funny how basic things like being able to pee and poop become something you truly have to plan. Little did I know that this experience was going to change my appreciation of mere basic things in life. In hindsight, I would do it again anytime, just because of the company, my hot husband and the experience. And now I know I can do it too. The best part though, is that the first leg of the trip was really easy. My amazing Lord eased me into it so I would not go into shock… literally. You will see what I mean going forward.
Friday morning came early as we had to begin preparing for our trip. Roy had already been grocery shopping, but we still needed a few items. We showered again, since we were not sure when we would get another shower, and by that evening we were headed up the road to Brooklyn, NY. Roy’s plan was to try and get up the road a few hours so the next day would not be that much driving. We were slated to be to Brooklyn by Sunday. The tour that we were on was for the NBA draft and the load in for that was not until early Monday morning. This way though, we were close to the venue, had a place to park the trucks for the day and night that was secure and we were close to a ferry port where we could go into New York City. This was exciting to me! It had been 20 years since I had been into the city.
Riding in an 18-wheel truck is quite an experience. I really thought I would be afraid. I mean these trucks are big and heavy and well, just a bit scary. Guess what? I was initially apprehensive, but not really afraid, which was progress for me. All the factors playing in, it wasn’t just me no longer having fear of riding, but also very much that my husband is an amazing driver. Roy is very good at what he does. Being a professional truck driver is a hard job. But someone has to do it. Haha, yes I just said that, but it was so perfect! And it is truth. Without these guys and gals driving what would happen? A lot of what we have ready access to, food, clothing, gas… we would not have in a timely fashion. It is nothing for Roy to drive 400-500 miles in a day. Do you realize how far you can go driving that many miles? It is often several states worth.
By that second night, once we got to where Roy wanted to be, I was so very tired, as was he. But that first 24 hours gave me such fresh eyes towards my husband. I knew in that moment, no matter what came at me, I was going to press in and be the best wife and travel partner possible. I also knew it was going to take me leaning on God and believing what was true…