What owner-ops have nightmares about

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I got one of those phone calls this week – you know, the one where the trucker calls his wife and says, “Well, there’s antifreeze coming out of the blow-by. We may need a new in-frame.”

This is where the wife wanders off into the woods and is never heard from again, because she has no idea where the $15,000 for a new in-frame will come from and she hopes if she eats enough of the pretty mushrooms, the animals will tell her what to do.

“Nightmare on Elm Street” for an owner-operator.“Nightmare on Elm Street” for an owner-operator.

(This may or may not have happened. I can’t be responsible for my actions until this story is done being told.)

Anyway, that happened and it’s the kind of thing you can take all the Dale Carnegie classes in the world about, but let’s face it, being an owner operator is a small business and a small business that has a catastrophic expense in the first months of start up generally has a hard time financially. It’s the kind of thing small business owners have nightmares about and it’s not the kind of thing an excitable wife and business partner wants to hear. I may have been less than supportive when I suggested we pray for an electrical fire.

Long story short, Randy (the previous owner of the truck, who has been nothing but cool and helped every time we’ve had issues) told George about a hose on something that was up above the blow by and to check it, because it may be leaking down into it and not actually from it. As it turns out, this may very well be the case, because he found a leak. The pressures are great, the truck is running fine, the oil isn’t milky, and we may just have gotten super-lucky. He’s having an oil analysis today, and if it’s good, he’s patching the leak and bringing her home so he can do a turnaround back to Laredo and bank some money in the maintenance account.

The in-frame looms. We knew it when we bought the truck, but it’s been so impeccably taken care of, it was a risk we were willing to take. It’s awesome to have the person who has done a great majority of the maintenance on it for the past five years available to troubleshoot. We really appreciate everyone who has offered help and advice, there is truly a wealth of information out there.

Now if you’ll excuse me, the squirrels say it’s time for me to go home.

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