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John Pettitt holding the “Ryder Cup” 1985

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Sikeston MO - Barstow CA

Then Mia wanted a photocopy of my Social Security Card and then wanted to hold on to the original. No way was this going to happen and unfortunately she got a little uptight, but I was not going to give in on this point. I said to her, the Social Security Office has sent it to me and if they intended it for Pullen’s attention, then it would have been sent to them. I certainly have not made a friend there.

I then had words with my Dispatcher Bill King about what was in the pipeline and he could only come up with the ice cream loads for the east of the Mississippi, which is of no use to anyone wishing to earn money, as there is not enough mileage in the job and there is a load and an unload for which one does not get paid. I told him that I needed to run west, but I felt at this time that it had fallen on deaf ears.

Then, Surprise! Surprise! I was called over the Tannoy system to report to dispatch and was given my own trailer and was told to load in the yard a full load of tiles for Ontario. CA. Obviously my words did not go unheeded. I loaded the tiles, a very heavy load and had to weigh at least four times, each time sliding the tandem to try and get it right. Finally success, although I was 60 lbs over on the steer, I knew that I would soon lose this as I burnt fuel. I had the truck and trailer washed and then made my way down the State 60 to Joplin MO where I parked for the night in the Flying ‘J’.

Friday 21st June. Just a straightforward run of 562 miles which I covered in eight and a quarter hours, with a fuel stop in Oklahoma OK and overnight at a truck stop in San Jon NM. Got up to date with the laptop and then decided to have an early night.

Saturday 22nd June. It was a nice start to the day, and after filling up at the Flying J in Albuquerque NM I pushed on hard with the cruise set at 75 mph as I could only drive for seven and three quarter hours. About an hour into Arizona I came across a thick belt of smoke from the fires that are raging in the south of the State. This lasted for about an hour, and at one time it was almost dark, it was so dense. I finally made my overnight stop at a little Truck Stop in Bellemont AZ which is just a little way past Flagstaff AZ.

I had a shock when I did my logs, as I found out that I can only drive for four and three quarter hours tomorrow, and that will only get me to Barstow CA. So it is looking likely that I will have to do another night shift, although in this case it will not be too bad as I have a 0300 hr booking for unloading at Dal-Tile in Ontario CA on Monday morning. I had soup, liver and onions for dinner with some fresh fruit to follow, and a large diet Pepsi. It was very nice and only $10.50

Sunday 23rd June. There are three hundred and forty one miles to Barstow and I have only four and a half hours that I am able to log. This means a slight bending of the rules, which I am going to do. The run itself was easy enough, no problems at the scales or with the Smokey bear’s on patrol. I have fueled up and am ready to go at about one o’clock in the morning. It is about 120 miles to Ontario, so will make that comfortably, and will also be hitting L.A. without the normal traffic problem. I had a chicken stir-fry for dinner, will be having a shower shortly, and then trying to get a few hours kip ready for the nightshift.

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