Day Thirteen: Driving, Backing, Uncoupling & Coupling, Trip Planning

Back in the saddle again. We spent half of the day back in the trucks, the last practice we’ll get before the “final exam” on Thursday. I can’t tell you why I haven’t been thinking about it, I usually obsess about tests and testing. This upcoming exam just isn’t on my radar. Maybe because I’m thinking about other things.


All my upcoming firsts. My first truck. My first load. My first time backing into a really difficult dock. My first long journey. My first screw up. My first time getting lost. My first breakdown. My first emotional breakdown. My first time driving in snow. Ever.

I’ve never driven in snow. In my life. I was born and raised in Los Angeles, I was 19 years old before I saw my first ice scraper. I was carpooling to college with a girl from Colorado. She had an ice scraper lying on her floorboard. I asked what it was. She looked at me like I was from Mars.

I’m not looking forward to driving in any kind of harsh weather. At all.

Obviously there is a huge difference in my driving from when I started here in Phoenix over two weeks ago. Today went like a lazy Sunday jaunt. The trailer was empty, the traffic was light. I’m still missing some downshifts, but most of it is, dare I say, becoming pretty natural.

I am aware of the dangers of being overconfident. Hopefully I won’t let “becoming pretty natural” turn into “letting my guard down.”

Arkansas is gone, he went back after the first week. I guess they only brought in extra trainers for the Grand Opening. Today I had a guy from the Salt Lake City Operating Center. Salt Lake was a complete opposite from Arkansas. Salt Lake knew how to give simple, clear, concise directions, he had really great insider tips on a few different things. He was laid back in a way that didn’t make you feel like he was about to take the afternoon off. I dug Salt Lake, and wish I could have had him my first week.

If wishes were horses…..

I still don’t know what’s going to happen at the end of the week. Tomorrow is all day in the classroom again, and then the test. If and when we pass that, they will introduce us to our DBL’s. More ridiculous Schneider corporate speak. DBL = Driver Business Leader. I mean, honestly.

Once we are passed off to our DBL’s, they will let us know what the next step is. Will I be going home for the weekend? Will they give me a new truck right here and tell me to start driving?

I just don’t know.  Stay tuned.

cb radio


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