Yes, even I have them. The last couple of days have been pretty good. I started off shaky on Friday. The blind side reverse has been eating away at my confidence so that even when I’ve finally got it into position I’ve been having to take a few shunts to get it squarely on the bay. It’s a knock-on effect, so I’d started flapping even at my other depots where I am comfortably competent.
Friday started badly, I lost position in the yard at Irlam and in my haste (and to be fair, due to a really shit truck. I know; a bad workman always blames his tools. This was shit though. Brakes that do nothing until you ram the pedal into the floor and a different automatic gearbox, which shifts down a gear when you put it into reverse, not straight into reverse gear.) I ended up bumping into another trucks wing mirror. Luckily it was mirror to mirror, and no harm was done but my confidence was shot. Again.
From that nadir it started picking up. Some arsehole in a rigid truck parked across my bay so I had to do some fancy reversing around him to get on the bay. I did it OK. My first drop was the place that had loaded me with the infamous ‘wobbly’ pallet. This time was worse. I check every load me after that, and this time they’d loaded boxes that were two pallets long (on two pallets). The boxes were stacked high, but not that wide, so were balanced in the middle of the pallets, and because they’d had to put it in length ways (Oo-er, mrs!) were on their own at the back of the trailer. So; boxes balanced on pallets, with nothing around them to support them. Ideal. If they could have packed them in sweating dynamite on egg shells it would have been perfect.
I looked at it and despaired. I put two straps on the load to try and hold it in place but I wasn’t optimistic. I tried to drive as smoothly as possible. Not easy when your brakes routine is: stamp, nothing, nothing, stamp harder, nothing, HOLY SHIT! STAMP! *thrown forward*
To my surprise when I opened the back doors at Northampton the load was still upright! Go me! Then I tried that manoeuvre the guy had suggested, screw the truck around as though I was going back out of the yard, pull forward until the back of my trailer was pointing in the right general direction (and here’s the thing, I could still see it! When you can see it you can steer it.) then just reverse in as normal. Through your blind side mirror, obviously, but if you are lined up it’s straight forward.
I cracked it! I don’t know if there is enough room to screw it around when there are trailers with units on them, but when the yard is open like that it’s do-able.
That made me very happy.
Today, Saturday, I’ve been doing other happy things.
I rang up to scrap the Micra (the emails having all disappeared into the ether) and the guy said £100. Once I’d made sure it was him giving me the £100 and not the other way around, I was happy.
The clarinet sold for £81. *sighs* It cost £150, plus £28 for the mouthpiece upgrade plus the ‘learn as you play’ book. Grrr.
Still, the two combined have given me enough for a (truck portable) soprano sax. I ordered it today! Yay!
Also today I’ve booked us a week in Cornwall in July. Not much, but it’s a break. If I don’t book it I’ll end up not taking a holiday this year. As I am a ‘self employed sub contractor’ I don’t get paid holidays. If I don’t work I don’t get paid. I am hoping to get taken on full time at some point. Until then I have to live as is.
I’ve taken our Lisa for a few drives as she’s after her car license. She’s really pretty good. She’s using my parents car when they bugger off to Bulgaria. This is less than perfect. She was hoping to get on their insurance, but as they are not in the country she won’t be able to swing that. The policy holder has to be the main driver. They can’t claim that from abroad, I can’t at a different address with a car in my name (not that I would, m’lud) so she’s screwed. She can legally add the parents as additional drivers to try to bring the premium down. I looked it up for her. As a brand new driver, even with the maximum (18 years) experience of the additional drivers the quote was grim. The problem is, it’s a 1.4 litre car. The best quote I could get was £1,281.88! Ouch. It went down to £800 or so with a year’s no claims bonus, but still ouch.
For comparison I tried the same quote on the Micra. First year, £518. Still steep, but in perspective not robbery. Luke (Wendy’s son, in his 30’s) tried to get a quote on the same car and the best he could get was £1,600! For a car worth (it was) a couple of hundred quid.
Wendy is off up town tonight with a workmate. Going to see The Damned. A bunch of late middle aged geezers trying to rock the yoof rebellion scene. Luke is at the same gig in a professional capacity, he’s the town photographer for occasions. They are using his work on some banners they are putting up around town apparently. If anyone wants a photographer/ computer geek he is available, modest rates. (I’d better get commission for this!)
I have spent the night cleaning the bathroom. I think I got the better night. Apart from the stench of bleach which is now in my nose and knocking me ill. I was going to really push the boat and fill in my self assessment tax return but it doesn’t have to be in until the end of January it seems, so screw that.
Tomorrow we are thinking of going to see Avengers Assemble. The superhero gang thing. Not Purdy and Steed doing Ikea furniture. It’s one of Joss Whedon’s so we are more or less guaranteed to love it. Joss is the geezer who did Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Firefly, Serenity and Dollhouse. He rocks our world. “We are not worthy, we are not worthy.”
I’ve doused my t-shirt in patchouli oil to take away the stench of bleach. And I’m sucking a mint. Riveting stuff, eh?
Wendy’s just got back, she’s buzzing off the gig. Larf. Still, she had a good night and behaved herself so all is win. I am ordered to tell everyone The Damned were ace. She had a brilliant time.
Oh, and I didn’t get a speeding ticket. Or it’s a week late if they do try and hit me with one.