As a trucker for nearly 15 years, I’ve traveled all across the United States and parts of Canada. Along the way I’ve had the opportunity to explore many things. Yet, for the most part, I haven’t. Why not? Well, it basically comes down to one thing: I can be a lazy tightwad when I put my mind to it.[box]Listen to the audio version above and subscribe to the podcast in iTunes.
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You see, I drive a truck to earn a living, not to have fun. Every time I’ve tried to go exploring, it ended up costing me a fortune. Like that time The Evil Overlord (the wife and ex-codriver) and I went into Portland, Oregon when our company couldn’t find us a load. The cab fare to and from downtown was almost $40. The meal we had at Jake’s Famous Crawfish was unbelievably awesome, but it set us back over $100. By the way, The Evil Overlord and I both highly recommend the Halibut stuffed with Brie.
Another time, we were stuck in Salt Lake City for five days due to the combination of a broken air conditioner, a holiday weekend, and a bonehead who ordered a wrong part. Long story there. There’s another venue for that. Again, The Evil Overlord wanted to go sight-seeing. Another expensive meal or two (not so great this time), a car rental, and a trip to the zoo, aquarium, and lots of other places I have no recollection of, and we spent nearly as much as we would have made if we’d have been driving all week. Had The Evil Overlord not been there, I’d have ordered a couple of pizzas and glued the remote control to my hand. That’s just how I roll.
Again, my point is that I spend 2-4 weeks on the road to make money, not spend it. And that’s what I choose to do. If you choose otherwise, you could see a lot of cool junk as a truck driver. You’ve just got to be motivated enough to do it and be willing to spend the dough. Your call.
Now having said all that, sometimes an opportunity just presents itself. That’s what happened when I found myself out in the middle of freakin’ nowhere in Nebraska. As if Nebraska itself isn’t in the middle of freakin’ nowhere. Anyway, I saw the signs for Carhenge long before I got there. Somewhere in the back of my amoeba-sized brain, I recalled the name and remembered reading about it somewhere. So what to do? Should I stop or not? For a change of pace, I had plenty of time on the load. Hmmmm. . .
Ultimately, I decided that I wasn’t going to go out of my way to see it. Yea, I know; surprise, surprise. If it wasn’t within viewing distance of the road, or it was, but the parking looked tight, I’d drive right on by. In other words, if I had to put any effort whatsoever into this little endeavor, I was going to pass. As fate would have it, the parking lot was empty and it was right on the main thoroughfare.
I ended up being there for 45 minutes. Not because the place was so interesting, but because I thought I’d finally reach into the depths of my soul and explore my artsy-fartsy side. This is something that @darkstaff, @alanqbristol, and @DriverChrisMc have been trying to get me to do for a long time. I don’t really have an eye for that sort of thing, but I figured I’d give it a shot. Here’s what I came up with.
The video was shot with a Flip Mino HD and all the pictures were taken with my iPhone 3GS (the one with the older, crappier camera). The pictures were all taken and edited using the Camera+ app, which totally rocks, by the way.
The music is a song called “Segue Jazz” from the band Walking On Einstein. You can find it on the “Commoners Among The Masses” album. They are from the Joplin, MO area and I went to high school with the drummer and bass player. Although the band is no longer playing, I love ’em and still listen to their stuff all the time. Let me know what you think.
Very nice. Not sure I’d take the time 2 stop 4 that. But now thanks 2 your video I really don’t have to. HaHa!
Totally agree with u camera + app is the bees knees as @darkstaff would say. Not sure him or Alan would agree but speaking 4 myself. It’s not so much your “artsy” side we want 2 see. But I just think if we can get you to post some more pics. Maybe(I know this is a longshot) but just maybe. You won’t be so dang long winded LMFAO. Like they say a pictures worth a thousand words.
“Longshot” is the understatement of the year. Congratulations! You win Jack Squat! LOL Thanks for stopping by and watching the video.
I hate to be a Debbie Downer. No, really. But all the cool things I’ve done out here have been happenstance and mostly free. Yeah, dinners are going to be expensive. You eat ramen and peanut butter to put the budget back on track. My Easter weekend on the beach in Florida (including sunrise service at the local bar), tour of downtown NYC, frozen Niagara Falls, the Harry & David tour and the 100 other cool things I’ve done were all free. One required cab fare. The rest just needed a few hours and the willingness to walk (something we all need to do more of). Quite frankly I’m always happier to be out here when I’m thinking of where I might go next, what adventure awaits. I think you need less time on the iPhone and more time in the real world. 🙂 BTW, the video was cool. You did good.
You’re my constant Twitter nemisis, so you may as well transfer that over to the blog too. 🙂
Seriously though, I’m glad you called me out on this because it’s good if someone new to trucking reads this, they’ll catch both sides of the story. I’m sure it’s totally possible to find things to do that don’t cost much money. I know you aren’t alone here. @KevinofMI goes exploring a lot and I think he does it relatively cheap too.
I guess it just boils down to my lack of an adventurous spirit. The Evil Overlord has that in spades so I was forced to do a lot of things when she was out here. Well, I guess “forced” is a bit strong of a word. Perhaps “persuaded” is more accurate. LOL. Like Niagara Falls. We too saw it in the dead of winter and it didn’t cost a dime. Well, it didn’t until we walked across the bridge into Canada and The Evil Overlord went on a spree in the duty-free gift shop. I do have her to thank for seeing the falls though. I know I’d have never gone to see it without her, and it was pretty freakin’ awesome.
So anyway, thanks for dropping by and leaving your thoughts. If I didn’t welcome a differing opinion, I’d have never married The Evil Overlord. 😉
Ha! A Gremlin! Gotta love Gremlins. That was my first car.
Sorry Portland put such a crimp in your wallet. It probably rained while you were here, too, huh?
What is it with Gremlins? What a butt-ugly car! HA!
As for our trip to Portland; surprisingly it was nice and sunny. Although I think nearly every other time we’ve driven though there has given us a free truck wash.
Hey Todd, I’m with Chris, new pics once in a while to maybe go with or add to the Blog/podcast would be a cool addition. In the years that I spent in a truck we also would spend time, if we had it, playing tourist. That and being a “Carny” living on a carnival lot during fair season, as well as being a driver. Afforded us plenty of opportunities to see plenty of cool stuff!
I like the video, cool stuff! I suppose if I were in the area and had the time? I would probably stop and check it out.
Anyway, take care and safe travels my friend.