The 2011 Trip
Part 5 The Dilly Dally Duo

We trust those who are reading this have noted the excellent job Robert has done. In other words if you would like to see the photo enlarged and up close simply click on it.

My old buddy Joe from way back in 1966 wants to know the fuel mileage we are getting. We will get you some figures Joe and you can work it out while sitting around in your -14C snowbank in Alberta. Remember we are buying the diesel in the smaller U.S. Gallon and we are recording the mileage in kilometres. The answer should prove interesting but I'm sure if I had known it I would not want to be here.

While topping up our diesel tank in Virginia a girl pulled in for diesel in her school bus. She called it the emergency bus because it had number 911 the emergency phone number in Canada and the United States. The seat poor old Max rode on would feel like an upholstered Coca Cola bottle box today compared to the seat she was riding in. A high back air suspended luxury looking seat to say the least. She was strapped into it like a NASCAR driver. It seemed to take her two minutes to get out of it and she had one of those dayglo emergency jackets hanging behind it. I bought one of those in case I need it for this trip. Most of the school buses down here have white flashing beacons on the roof like an aircraft beacon. Most have girl drivers like they do in Canada. Max hauled the kids from Black Rock and Grafton including Dick and I to Central Kings Rural High back in 1953. This girl was one of those bubbly kind of people one can enjoy talking to all day. She came running over stating they owned a 35 foot with four slides. It used to be the length, then length and number of axles and now it is length and number of slide outs. A few call them tip outs. John would have had one on all four sides of this trailer including the roof had I wanted them. I reckon one on the roof would be a slide up and not slide out. We did not want them for a number of reasons. If one is having trouble in a campground it is usually a slide out that will not come in and it is bad enough when one will not go out. The main reason we did not want one is that we are camping. When we pull into a truck stop for a triple S; sandwich, snooze and shower there is no room between two 18-wheelers to put one out. It is a real obstacle trying to walk over one when in the trailer with the slide out in. So we are glad we did not get them.

We got around and got on the road at 0928 this morning and pulled into the next exit for diesel. A place called Handee Hugo's. You should have been with us Dick you would have enjoyed it. It was one of these typical little filling stations. After I took on the diesel I had to get Joan out back to make sure I did not upset the junk food shack and then get squared away and out on the road. Down here one has to pay for their fuel before they can pump it. I paid for $70.00 worth and that was what I got. The truck meter read full but how can I give Joe figures like that in order to see what we are doing? While filling the truck there was a horrendous crash. When I looked up I could see a good looking Kenworth dragging a 53 foot trailer that had just dragged his trailer wheels over a high steel stop sign and flattened it. I reckon that is how he told Selma, North Carolina, what he thought of the place. He kept the hammer down and kept right on trucking. I found it very funny and when we went down the road a short ways the speed limit sign was hanging upside down by one left bottom bolt only. Joan said “It looks like he got that one as well.” When I got squared away to get out of Handee Hugo's a good looking girl stopped her jeep and blocked traffic so I could get out. It was Saturday morning but plenty of traffic around.

Selma is one large outlet mall and Joan said Donna would love this place. We would be a couple of days getting the girls to quit creating inflation in that place Dick.

In yesterday's report I said the old 95 dropped down to two lanes. That should have read four lanes with two lanes on each side. The old 95 was like that most of the time today and the traffic was similar to the four lane running from Halifax to Truro. It was rather nice. One could set the auto pilot on the maximum speed and more or less sit back and enjoy the ride.

We trust the last one out of Quebec turned off the lights and shut the door. There were a lot of them on the road heading south today. We saw three or four from Ontario as well but they were the only Canadian vehicles we saw. There were several deer laying on both sides of the road as road kill. It is a shame animals have not learned to live with the vehicles on the highways. One would think they would run from a vehicle and not try and out run one across a road.

At 0928 when we started the truck the temp was 35F and it was sunny. When the temp is in the 30's and when you start the truck it will flash from the word Ice to the temperature. Joan climbed into the truck with her parka and gloves on. I told her she had forgotten her ear muffs and she simply said she could use them. We both agreed we would not believe anyone if they told us it was this cold down here at this time of year. When we went past the exit to Myrtle Beach the temp was 43F. We hope it will warm up by March when Glenn and Vicki come down for a month. It was 78F in Arizona and the gang there was swimming in the pools that are heated to 88F.

The stereo in this truck is something else. When tuned to a number of stations down here it will print the artists name and the title of the tune across the front of the radio.

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Our first stop after the performance at Selma was at St. George, South Carolina, at a Hess truck stop. There were acres of trucks with a few motor homes in among them. There were a few of us with 5th wheels. There used to be a little Dodge pickup around Bridgetown, Nova Scotia, with a front license plate that read “When I grow up I want to be a big diesel.' This is our outfit making like it was a big diesel.

Well I done did it. Some of you have been asking how much this outfit weighed. I had no idea until today. I'm not so sure John knew actually. I felt he may just have put an estimate of the trailers weight on her papers. I really did not want to know in case I would have to get a higher license in order to operate it. The girls at this truck stop were a great bunch and one of them weighed the truck and trailer for me. It cost $9.50 and the best $9.50 ever spent.

This is the rig making like a big diesel and one can see the scales in the background.

Here are the figures for you who have been asking:

Steer Axle 4,440 lbs

Drive Axle 6,880 lbs

Trailer Axles 9,500 lbs

Gross Weight 20,820 lbs

This is with all the gear we have with us of course, a full tank of fresh water, an empty gray and black tank, Joan and I both on board and the truck's fuel tank was ¼ full. As can be seen it is in pounds that I understand instead of the metric system. The girls were so good at this station one actually turned the diesel pickup pump on so I could top it up full. Now at the next pump if I can just fill it the same level I should have some figures for Joe.

It was a beautiful sunny day but not until late in the day did the temperature reach the dizzy height of 67F. We ran through one slight sprinkle of rain only. We kept going until 1622 or 4:22 PM and time to shut down. It gets dark around 5 PM so Joan picked out a campground and we pulled in. We are at the Lake Harmony RV Park at Townsend, Georgia. We may or may not make Florida tomorrow. This park is so nice we may stay an extra day.

The run for the day was 581 kilometers and plenty long enough. In case anyhone is interested we picked this trailer up from Equest in May 2005 and we have now dragged it a total of 23,018.4 kilometers. It is not very much for five years because it sat on the lot at Evangaline Beach for four years. It is a well built tough old trailer.

We were unable to get into the internet here but must try again.


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