Friday, June 17, 2011

Ice Road Truckers

 I have found a new program to watch on TV. It is called Ice Road Truckers. It is on the History Channel which I find kind of interesting. Anyway, this show is along the lines of the cable show called Deadliest Catch. Yes, I watch that one too. I am hooked on Lisa and Alex and Greg and Jack and all the other drivers as they compete to be the load leader of the season. Oh yes, they make a lot of money doing this kind of driving too. They also toot their horn a lot. Why, I don't know since there is never anyone else around. Solitary, very solitary.

I am fascinated by these truckers who must maneuver the roads in Alaska and the fact that a couple of them are young women. They drive roads and hills called roller coaster. They use push trucks to get a heavy load up an icy hill. They drive on ice highways which are really frozen rivers and lakes.  I am enthralled with their driving skills and all the down shifting they have to do to maneuver those huge trucks through that harsh winter country. Why anyone lives there is beyond me. Minus 40 degree weather - out there putting chains on tires and fixings loads does not look like fun to me.

The reason I am writing about this at all is that I was sitting at the intersection of 33rd and Minnesota this morning and what do I see? A huge semi-tractor trailer moving about 5 miles an hour through the intersection. A woman is driving the rig and I can see 2 guys leaning forward in the aft cabin area. On the trailer it reads: MCT Student Driver in training. Cool. A woman is learning to drive one of those big a.... trucks. I wonder if she watches Ice Road Truckers and decided she wanted to drive a big truck in Alaska. I was glad she wasn't learning to make a left turn. Have you ever been sitting at an intersection when one of those trucks is turning and you can almost wipe the dirt off the trailer as it passes by you?

I always thought it might be kind of fun to ride with someone who drove a truck on a trip somewhere in America. You sit up high and can see down into the other cars. You can see unobstructed for miles ahead. Maybe see a pesky highway patroman before you are right on top of him. What does it look like it in the sleeping quarters behind the driver's seat, anyway? How they get those big trucks down little tight streets or alleys is beyond me. Have you seen a truck back into the back of the Sunshine store down on 2nd Avenue? I can't even back up straight in my van. My very first car was a two door Ford Fairlane Super Sport with a 4 on the floor. I wonder if I can shift one of those semis. If only I didn't have to back up.

I wish that woman truck driver in training good luck. I am impressed she was giving this job a try. I hope she learns to go a little faster though. She was holding up traffic on Minnesota Avenue. Who knows, maybe I will see her on the History Channel in an Ice Road Trucker series. They could use another woman on that show.

Ten four good buddy!

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