Working to remain positive in negative circumstances
I learned today about Russell’s Truck and Travel Center in Glen Rio, N.M. Learned by stopping there for the first time.
Diane and I woke up this morning Moriarty, N.M. where we spent the night. We are deadheading east from Arizona to better position ourselves for freight.
It does not happen often but it has happened to us a few times in our expediting career that everyone we know is doing well while our production sucks. I have talked with fellow Landstar BCOs who have been at the company a long time, others who have been here about as long as us and others who are brand new. All of them are running well while Diane and I find ourselves with nothing.
This happens to every expediter every so often and it is hard to take when it does. Emotions kick in that are not pleasant. Thoughts come to mind that normally do not. Time passes slow.
To get un-stuck, Diane and I decided yesterday to deadhead east. We love the West but this time we are finding ourselves with too many days between loads. We could go to Los Angeles but that would likely keep us west. Oklahoma City is our destination now and if necessary we will continue to Saint Louis.
Driving did not eliminate the mental and emotional struggles I mentioned above. I am not liking it that we are driving on our own dime to chase freight. Given our current circumstances, it is the best option we have but that does not make it any easier. We have called agents, talked to friends, and talked to people in our carrier’s office to scope things out. The best choice is to chase freight so that’s what we’re doing.
Some good has come out of this. We called one agent that we otherwise would not have. That new contact produced nothing good today but may serve us well in the future.
Getting stuck in a black hole like this prompts one to look for new sources of light. I have looked before and looked again today into using outside load boards to get freight. When we are running well, there is no need to pay for access to these boards. But when we are in a fix like this, the expense seems worth it.
Do we spend the money and gamble that freight might be found on outside load boards? I’m not sure. Maybe the thing to do is to try it for a while to see. But as soon as we write the checks, freight will likely pick up for us and the need for outside boards will fade.
So ran my thoughts as I drove today.
One nice discovery was Russell’s Truck and Travel Center on at I-40 Exit 369 in New Mexico. We have never stopped there before because they do not offer a fuel discount like the brand-name truck stops do. Not being in a hurry today, we stopped for a stretch break.
Even from a distance this place was inviting. Its curb appeal was great compared to the truck stops we usually stop at. Diane went in while I stayed in the truck. When she came back she said the store offered an interesting mix of 50′s, Route 66 and New Mexico merchandise, in addition to the usual truck stop mix. The store also features a small car museum and was very clean. Sadly, the cell phone signal was very weak. We cannot afford to be cut off from the outside world so staying there for more than a few minutes is not an option.
We continued on to Oklahoma City and stopped for fuel at the TA there. People we knew from our former carrier came to greet us at the fuel pumps. We decided to spend the night there and join them for coffee and a visit in the restaurant. The visit was nice but when we returned to the truck Diane said to me, “I don’t miss complaining about dispatch.”