Starla was the only one at home when we left there. We hugged her goodbye and took off. We had to drive to Washington, WV to pickup our load. I began the drive. It was in the late part of the afternoon but I figured I would drive until we got to our pickup. We had to stop in Grantsville for fuel.
By the time we got fueled up Bill was home with Starla.
Pops tried to sleep a little while I drove but it is always hard to get back to a routine. He did manage to get a little though.
We got to our pickup and the dogs were just now settling down their nerves.
They had really enjoyed their time at home this time. Chucky is feeling much better. Both of them has lost weight and they were gettting a lot of exercise. I really need to try to do better with them. I have to stop giving them people food and try to get them moving more. I am not ready to say goodbye to Chucky just yet.
So after we got loaded Pops began to drive. I called home and talked to Bill and Starla for a bit then I went to bed.
I woke up as we were coming into Nashville. Pops drove us through there while I made myself some coffee. He stopped at a rest area on the other side of Nashville and I began to drive. He stayed awake for awhile and then laid down to sleep.
The day was pretty uneventful and I know the roads well. Traffic was very light and none of the weigh stations were open because of it being Thanksgiving Day. So I just cruised along. I drove us through Dallas and stopped on the other side at a rest area. Pops started driving at that point and he drove us to a rest area about an hour or so away from Laredo. We stayed there for the night and then the next morning early he drove us to our drop off.
It was really busy at our destination and that surprized me. There was a lot of stuff being picked up and delivered. We had to wait in a line of trucks until it was our turn.
Then we drove back up toward San Antonio but stopped for a short time at a rest area for Pops to take a nap. Then we drove to SA to a truckstop and got showered.
Tate and Shirley said that they were picking us up and then we were picking up another one of their driver teams and we were all going out to dinner. I am always nervous meeting new people. I guess that goes back to my younger days when I was so shy and backward. But once they got into the car, I was fine and we all chatted as if we'd known each other forever.
Tate took us to a Catfish place called Clearwater Fish House. I think all of us ordered the catfish and it was so good. Tate and Shirley had taken us there once before. It is an old cotton mill turned into a restuarant and they have all kinds of interesting and unusual antiques hanging on the walls and on shelves. The tables are wooden and rustic and so are the walls and floors. It is really a neat place.
After that Tate and Shirley dropped Jeff and Sandra back to their truck and us back to ours. We will see them again tomorrow.
Pops was going to Tate's ranch in the morning. He was going to hunt deer.
As we drove up their driveway in the morning Pops saw a big turkey gobbler and then when we parked in the driveway we saw a deer run across the field.
So Pops hunted, Shirley and I went to town and Tate hung out at the ranch tinkering with his trucks.
Shirley and I had bought some stuff for supper and a big cake too. So we had a good supper. After supper we visited for awhile and then we went out to the truck.
The next morning Pops and I used Shirley's car to go to church. We had gone to this church once before and we liked it here. Everyone is so friendly and we made new friends this time as well. It is called Life Bridge Christian church.
The evangelist there is Robin Thompson. He speaks in such a way that is so easy to follow. He is in the middle of a sermon series.
After services we went back to the ranch.
Shortly after we got back Shirley and I took off. We wanted to go to the flea market. We had talked about doing it so many times but it never seemed to work out, this time though we were going. And we had a really good day just wondering around looking at everything.
When we got back to the house, Shirley used the leftover chicken from yesterday and we had chicken salad and ham salad and of course the cake too. And then Pops spent the evening taking his gun for a walk.
It is always so nice to be here. I just love visiting with them and I am loving Texas more and more. Lucy was having a good visit too, but Chucky got a sand burr in his foot as soon as we got here so now he didn't want to even get out of the truck. Oh well, not everyone loves Texas I guess.
We hadn't had any load offers and figured that it was because of the holiday. But Monday came and we still weren't getting any. Pops hunted again a little bit and Shirley and I went into town again to check her mail and pick up some things.
When we got back I found out that Pops was negotiating a load to California. Our company wanted to pay us to drive clear out there with no load and then pickup an explosive load, drive it 200 miles and deliver it. Then they were giving us a return trip picking up in Las Vegas and going clear to Bangor, Maine.
Once I looked it all over and figured it all out, it really was paying pretty good and there was a lot of spare time built in so we wouldn't have to rush. So we accepted the load but that meant we had to leave right away. So we said our goodbyes to Tate and Shirley and off we went.
Pops drove all night. I drove all the next day. Then Pops drove some more and then we slept. We got up early Wednesday morning and went to pick up our load.
Hauling explosives in the state of California is a whole lot more tedious than anywhere else. CA has so many regulations and inspection stations. We were both so worked up and nervous, but we met a really nice Fedex couple that specializes in hauling these explosive loads and they helped us out so much. We were very fortunate to meet them.
Once loaded we drove away from Los Angeles and headed toward Baja, CA. We figured it would take us about 3 hours but we weren't taking into account the CA freeway traffic. So it took a lot longer.
It was a really nice drive though. And once we got off the freeway it was even better. I drove while Pops tried to get some sleep. I passed by what looked like water. I knew that we were in the desert area so I didn't know if it was a mirage or not. The water just went on and on. I finally spotted signs stating that it was the Salton Sea. Hmmmm, imagine a sea in the desert.
We got a little confused with our directions and after making some wrong turns and then getting corrected we found our destination. It was at a hidden place on a military base. As a matter of fact our gate looked like a school bus shed on the edge of an airport runway. But we got escorted to a building and got unloaded.
Now we were deadheading to Las Vegas for our Friday morning pickup. That means that tomorrow is a day off for us and we can take our time and enjoy the ride. We decided to drive back to the interstate and then sleep and then have the whole next day to drive up through the mountains and enjoy the scenery. But I sure wish we would have slept there because I think we missed seeing some great stuff as we drove by in the dark.
We drove by a place called Imperial Sand Dunes. Many businesses were selling passes for Glamis. I looked it up on the internet and found out that it was a large recreational area where many people bring their atvs to ride.
It was a full moon and we could see some of these sand dunes. They were huge. Some of them were bigger than houses. And they seemed to go on for miles and miles. It sure was something.
When we got up the next day. I was driving. We were on a smaller road. It was a good road but not an interstate. The scenery was very pretty and it was a nice, slow enjoyable drive. We got up to Las Vegas in the late afternoon. We found a good parking place at the TA truckstop right in Las Vegas. I thought it would get loud but it never did.
We got up the next morning and made our pickup. It is Friday morning and we have 3335 miles to our destination on Tuesday. It is a long, long way but we don't have to hurry. And our route is taking us across RT 40 instead of Rt 70 so it would/should be much easier of a drive too.
After only about 15 minutes into the drive I realized that we were going to be crossing the Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge right at the Hoover Dam. This made me so excited that I could hardly stand it. I had wanted to go there so badly but found out that commercial vehicles weren't permitted there unless they were traveling through. Now we were traveling through.
But it was a bridge, a really big bridge and it was windy. The kind of wind that they actually had warning signs telling high profile vehicles to avoid the area. So, ok, I am excited to be here but scared that I might die here. haha
It really was exciting to cross. We didn't get to see it as well as I would've liked but I was kind of busy holding the truck onto the roadway.
Pops slept while I drove and then I slept while he drove and we made our way across the whole United States. It got colder and colder the further we traveled. But finally after a long couple of days and many many miles here we sit at a rest area near Bangor, Maine. We had the whole day off so we are resting up. I am trying to get caught up on some things and Pops isn't feeling well. I think he has a bladder infection. I hope that's all it is. Please pray for him.
Also we got some sad news that a good friend, Gyneth Bennett passed away today. Her husband Ray is a traveling Evangleist and together they spent many mailes all over the US spreading the word of God. Keep Ray in your prayers as he is feeling the loss of his life partner.