Sunday, July 1, 2012

The Corpus Christi Adventure...

I've come to find that with Werner, there is a lot of hurry up and wait time going on. But I'm getting ahead of myself. Let me start at the beginning of the story where I get stranded in Corpus Christi for almost a week!

This all could be related to Charlies Loaner truck which wasn't in the best condition. When he first got it, it had to get a jump start. Then they took it to the shop and the mechanics didn't know what was wrong with it, but said it was fine to drive. It wasn't.  

Family Dollar Trailers as far as the eye can see. seriously. there are a ton!
Charlie and I got assigned a load to deliver in Corpus Christi, TX. We were soo excited! We might get to see the ocean and thats the home of Selena(from the movie, that is the one thing I remembered. except that fact that her fan club presidend killed her. :/  )   So we take off from Odessa(which if you remember is where we pick up the loads from family dollar.)
We start driving to Coprus Christi all happy and what not, listening to our story, talking about how excited we are, etc.  We get to Corpus Christi and let me tell you it was HOT. and not just hot, it was humid. Like the kind of humid where you walk outside and you think to yourself, "Hmm I'd much rather drink my water than feel it in the AIR!"   Well there wasn't any truck stops to stay at so we just went to the family dollar store we were going to deliver to in the morning and decided to stay in the parking lot. Let me tell you I was NOT excited about this decision, but alas, there wasn't anything we could do.

The next morning Charlie unloaded his load while I lounged in the back of the truck, bought some necessities at the familly dollar. It was raining so it wasn't too hot. I was happy.  After he was done we were pulling out and he was checking some load messages on his computer log thing called the Qualcom. Most Tractors(remember this is what a Semi-Truck is called)  have a mechinism that shuts off the engine if it idles too long. The truck shut off, but we didn't think much of it...until it wouldn't turn over when he tried to start it. I'm serious, the truck would NOT turn over. Charlie called his dispatcher and said it needed to be fixed.  The dispatcher(Alex) said he would work on it.  So we waited in the truck for like 4 hours. Then a tow truck came and pulled the truck forward and then it started. All it needed was a pull start(ghetto). Thats it.

Then we start off to our next stop at the next family dollar to go unload. We're driving down the road. We see a  red stoplight ahead. Charlie downshifts to slow down, then the light turns green so Charlie shifts up into 3rd gear to start going and I kid you not the Truck stalls out. Right at the edge of the intersection. Not in the middle of the road, like we were stopped at a red light. It was ridiculous. You can't imagine how upset Charlie was.  He called Alex(the dispatcher) and told him everything. He got right on it.  Charlie got his orange vest and had to go lay out triangles in the back of the truck.  A local police officer got behind him and started directing traffic to go around him. He also said he called a Local Tow Service that deals with Large Trucks. All the while we are just sitting in the truck. Nothing else we can do.

So after about an hour, a tow truck comes to save the day!  They had to stop traffic! It was crazy.  But what was even crazier, was that the tow truck used these huge chains to hook up the truck and after we were out of the intersection, the chains busted! It sounded like a gunshot.  All I could think was how much this was going to cost Werner. Woo eee I cannot even imagine.  So we talk to the tow guys and decide that they are going to tow us to this Truck Shop called Freightliner and see what Werner wants to do.  There is not room for both Charlie and I in the tow truck so another man working for the tow company comes and takes us in his personal vehicle to follow the tow truck.(This was an extremely awesome towing service.) 

Now this whole time Charlie is on the phone with Werner trying to figure out what they're going to do about this.  We kept getting the run around and didn't know what we were going to do.  Meanwhile after we dropped the truck off at Freightliner we didn't know what we were going to do that night. We couldn't stay in the truck because it would get too hot.  Finally we got the word from Werner that we would have to stay the night. So the Tow truck guy gave us a ride to the Car Rental Place(He was super nice and we really appreciated him going out of his way to help us.)  We rented a car and got a hotel by the coast.  I was trying to make an adventure but I was still a little upset.  Although the next day we did get to play tourists for the day.

We made the best of the situation and decided to go see Corpus Christi.  We started off the day by going to the ocean because I wanted to dip my toes. I haven't seen the ocean since I was about 6 when we went to South Padre Island-Gulf of Mexico for a family reunion.  It was super fun just seeing the ocean and sharing it with Charlie.  The Gulf was warm, I wasn't expecting that. But I guess if it's hot and humid outside the ocean should be warm. It was quite brown and green. It smelled weird to me, but I've not been around the ocean alot, maybe that's just what it smells like.
 Charlie kept calling Werner dispatch and they kept dragging their feet on what we they were gonna do with us. So we just kept sightseeing.  We drove out to Corpus Christi Beach to see what we could see.  There was so much to see and I loved it! :)  We ate lunch at this little restauraunt that was on the beach. It had really good food and we were just excited to be tourists. It was like a free vacation.  Then we went to the U.S.S Lexington, this huge World War II aircraft carrier that is docked in the bay and has been made into a museum. It was actually really cool.  I thought alot about my Dad and kept saying that he would really like this place. I miss my Dad.  But we had lots of fun. :)

View from the restaurant. The U.S.S. Lexington


There was still things to do so next we went to the Texas State Aquarium, which was super cool. 

 I really enjoyed seeing all these things and being able to see Corpus Christi all while in the back of my mind was the fact that we still didn't know what we were gonna do.  We finally got ahold of Werner and they told us that we would probably be stuck there till Monday(It was Friday) They also said they wouldn't pay for the rental car. So we had to return the rental car we had and take a cab to the hotel they set up for us.  It wasn't that it was a bad hotel, it was just in a bad location. It wasn't near anything but other hotels and apartments. We couldn'd even walk anywhere because it was so hot. We would walk outside for 5 minutes and be pouring sweat.  We tried to make the best of it.  Watching movies, playing games, but it was still quite frustrating.  Finally on Monday (After we checked out of the hotel and sat in the lobby till 3:00pm) They told us we would be getting a truck in Laredo, but we couldn't go until tomorrow. So we checked back into our room for another night. The next day we were able to get out of Corpus Christi. We drove to Laredo to get a truck, but we couldn't get it till the next day.  So we had to stay in a hotel(paid for by Werner) and we picked up the truck the next day. Then we had to go back to Corpus Christi to pick up the empty trailer that was at Freightliner so we could go back to Odessa because driving a Tractor without a Trailer is very dangerous.  Then we had a change of plans. They told us that we had to go help another driver unload his load because he was out of hours.  We didn't have anywhere to stay so we parked on the beach and slept in the truck. 

The next day we didn't have to go help until 4:00 so we took a swim in the ocean.  And while swimming in the ocean sounds like a good idea, I didn't enjoy it as much as I thought I would.  I was scared because I couldn't see the bottom and didn't know what was in there. Also in the Gulf of Mexico they tell you to watch for jellyfish, and I kept thinking I was seeing them.  We didn't but it was still creepy. 

We went to help the other driver unload and I helped.  I stayed at the bottom of the trailer and helped the boxes stay on the rollers into the store.  It was so hot and humid. I don't know how people live in Corpus Christi.  Finally we were able to finish the load and we got back to Odessa.  I have more adventures to tell, but I'll leave them to another post.   I am generally an optimistiv person, so looking back at this experience I try to find the good.  And what I've come up with is that through all this junk and waiting, I get to be with my best friend. I would take all this waiting and drama with Charlie than being at home by myself any day. I'm so blessed to be able to have these adventures with my best friend. :)

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