Trucker Etiquette

A boy and his 20 footer
A boy and his 20 footer

Tuesday, 1:30 PM CST
Shiloh, IL

Unlike rental cars that send you out with a full tank, you pick up and return the Uhaul at whatever level the previous customer left it. Mine was 3/8 but I didn’t feel like filing it right away. I wanted to get accustomed to the vehicle first.

After about 50 miles in the pelting rain I stopped for gas in, appropriately enough, Gas City. Easy in and out. Then I saw a Starbucks down the road and went for it. I wasn’t sure where to park because I was still in always forward (never reverse) mode.

I circled Starbucks once then looked next door at Taco Bell and saw them: the Lardassians. Big people driving a big pickup hauling a big boat. They parked sideways taking up 9 spaces then waddled in for their Supreme Mission Clanger Deluxe with extra cheese. I learned how to park.

I also learned why truckers drive the way they do. In the left lane it’s all about the competition. In the right lane it’s about survival. It takes forever to stop those things so you leave many truck lengths in front of you and plenty of room at the on/off ramps. I even slowed down and let people on in front of me. Unheard of.

I also used my turn signals to change lanes which I never do.   In a car I can execute the manouever faster than I can flip the lever.  There’s no wasted motion in my day.

But when you’re not sure what you’re seeing in the side mirrors is accurate you use every device at your disposal. I confess I got goose bumps the first time I passed a truck, signaled to get back in his lane and he flashed his lights. They like me. They really like me.

I left New Albany around 8 am. Happy to report I got ‘er up to 70 this morning. Suck on that Sammy.

A White Siberian and his 20 footer
A White Siberian and his 20 footer

Next: Westward, Ho!
Previous: I Have No Choice But to Drive 55

For the complete travelogue see On the Odyssey Road
For the complete eviction saga, From the Beginning


3 thoughts on “Trucker Etiquette

    1. Your comment inspired me to buy a washed out red white and blue madras plaid short sleeve shirt in Miami OK.

      Speaking of the grandkids, which one had the object we had to photogrpah in front of the GG Bridge? I feel like I’m reliving our history with my Siberian.

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