Times they are a changing.

I am in a bit of a dilemma with work. The job I have is steady, Mon-Fri on the same run. I know the route, I know the job, I can find the places and reverse safely into them. I’m not fantastic on that blind-side reverse still, but adequate. On Friday I was running out of driving hours, down to my last two minutes, so I surprised myself by slamming it on really well. Can’t guarantee I won’t make a total hash of it again on Monday, though. The thing is, I am doing it. However much I faff about, I’m getting it done.

On Friday they also sent me to another drop, the first time I’d had to pick up from there. The yard was quite small and had obstructions along the fence so it was a tight reverse without room to pull forward to straighten up first. I had two warehouse lads leaning out to watch me, and I did it first go. I’m not boasting, this is my job after all. But I have come a long way and am actually settling down and confidently doing things. I remember the nervous wreck I was at Stobbarts. I had no idea what was going on half of the time I was reversing.

My dilemma is this; do I stick with this job (steady, do-able, but short, inconvenient hours, not massive pay) or do I risk re-applying for that Igloo job? (To which I referred a few months back.)

It’s better hourly pay, a lot more hours, sealed trailers (you don’t have to do anything with them to unload them, just drive them and swap them at the depots) and the shift start times are what you want (4am-6am, I would choose.)

Everything about Igloo is better, except I don’t know where all their depots are. I have a map, satnav and google maps/ navigation on my ‘phone. Once I’ve found each one once I should be alright. What I’ve been doing is getting a print off of the instructions to each site and writing notes on them. Sorted for next time then.

It’s really a matter of when, not if I re-apply.

The thing that is holding me back is lack of confidence. I’m scared of assessments for a start, even though I sailed through my last one. Then there’s the fear of the unknown. What if it’s loads of tiny yards you have to blind-side into? What if I have another bump? You see, while I’m at this works I am getting better, and if I do have a bump can go and get a better job. If I have a bump at Igloo I’ve thrown away a steady job and buggered my chances with the good job.

The idea is in my head now though.

 

One thing I should say, being a driver is so much better than my previous jobs. Whenever I see the warehouse lads now I’m reminded. No chilling, always rushing with someone telling you what to do, and all the jobs involve grafting. A human as a graft machine. Not so with this lark. Have to wait three hours for a unit (truck)? Pop into the canteen and drink coffee. Here’s your drops for the day…see you tomorrow. It’s all chill. And because you are driving it passes the time. I’m working a lot longer shifts now, but it doesn’t seem like work. I remember when that driver I knew twenty years ago found out I’d passed my test. He shook my hand and said “Congratulations, mate. You’re going to fucking hate it!” I said at the time to one of my workmates “There speaks a man who’s never picked boxes in –28C.”

 

In other news, I’ve tried my final strategy before resorting to the doctors; rested my leg for weeks until it had stopped hurting then warmed up gently but thoroughly before going out for runs. I’ve managed three, ten mile runs and my leg is still working. Touch wood. I am really hopeful that this is it. Fixed. I have to put fifteen minutes into warming up and the same or more warming down, but my leg seems to be holding up. Who knew? Apart, obviously, from every coach, expert, sports advisor and people with common sense.

All my life it’s been a case of chucking my kit on and setting off at a run. It’s only this time around it’s not been in boots. Perhaps, given my age, it would have happened even if I hadn’t buggered my leg with those fancy trainers.

Anyway, the good news is; last Saturday I warmed up then set off for a trial run. My leg was holding up at two miles, so I pushed on. I thought about turning around and just doing a five mile run but soldiered on (out of stubbornness if not good sense) and managed the ten miles. It was a poor time, but that wasn’t the objective. I did it with a working leg.

I’ve been out for two other runs and apart from the usual gripes (blisters, knee throbbing, bones in foot grinding) I seem to be fine. I have been finding the distance a bit of challenge which was annoying me. Then I discussed it with Wendy today, and I probably haven’t done ten, ten mile runs all year. I did two about six weeks ago, then my leg buggered up, before that it was another six weeks and I’m not sure I did two that time.

Anyway, I’ve put on over a stone and done bugger all running this year due to injury, so ten miles is not too shameful. I want to shed a stone or so before our holiday so I can fit in my wetsuit for sea swims.

 

The other thing in my life at the moment is my soprano sax. Or rather, it isn’t in my life. I have a tracking jobby (which I have sussed out how to use) and it shows the map and times. It took one day to get from the factory in China to Customs and Excise in Coventry. Eleven days it’s been sat there. GRRRRRR! So no saxing whilst I’m sat, bored in my truck.

 

A Swedish trucker chum (@TruckerLez) has suggested a book for me, though. The Passage. So far it’s good. A bit like Stephen King’s The Stand, people have said. But with vampires. I took her recommendation after she told me about The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. She had it (in the original Swedish) in audio book to listen to in her truck. She said the prose was that clunky she had to keep stopping it to scream. She was bob on with that.

Got to go, bedtime is upon us.

Later,

Buck.

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