April 29, 2008

Heads Or Tails: Special Memory

Hi everyone! Welcome to week #35 of Heads Or Tails! This week's theme/prompt is: TAILS - Share a special memory. Share your memory at Heads or Tails!: http://headsortailshome.blogspot.com/

This is not really a memory but a Trucker Story from my brother, Brian. It reminds me of how lonely a trucker's life can be at times.

It was a long cold night driving through the mountains of Montana ( Big Sky Country ). It was clear out stars shining a very breath taking scene lie out ahead of me. I was headed back to St.Louis with a load of fresh Apples from Washington. I had picked up the load earlier in the day from a produce warehouse in the middle of nowhere, and at the moment I felt so alive driving. I felt like I could drive forever with the occasional yawn typical of a long haul trucker.

I was rolling through some of the steepest mountain roads I had ever been on with the turbo screaming on the way up, and the Jake rumbling on the way down. Up ahead I see a truck stop exit sign and I ask myself maybe I should call it a night. But decide against it. I feel so good right now so I just upshift and roll on by never giving it a second glance.

So I roll up the next hill all the while observing signs saying 6%grad ahead trucks stay in right lane use lower gears. I see one that says brake inspection lane trucks must stop! and I remember thinking naw this is a new truck and my brakes feel fine I’ll just ease on down everything will be fine. As I crest the mountain passing up the check lane I feel a strange shudder so I just drop another gear and start down the other side. I begin the slow task of maintaining the 35 MPH speed limit set for trucks. I see a sign that says curve ahead 25MPH slow now,and at that instant I see the all to familiar glow to drivers coming from the trailer tandems that only indicate one thing Your Brakes Are On Fire!!

A million things are going through my mind stay calm I keep telling myself I grab the CB to warn anyone ahead of me to clear the mountain as I hit the 25 MPH curve at 55 starting on the right shoulder and ending up just inches from the left guardrail overlooking the vast empty valley below. I think to myself if I had just stopped at that truck stop I could have been talking to my wife, and kids telling them about this beautiful place. I look down at my speed I’m doing 80 with no signs of any brakes and the Jake just screaming trying to slow this truck I look at my speed again 95 and I glimpse a sign ahead Switchback 20 MPH Slow Now. I look at my speed 100 as i hit the beginning of the curve my hand white from gripping the steering wheel so hard I feel the trailer starting to roll, the apples shifting to the side of the trailer. I look out the mirror to see air where my trailer tires are supposed to be and the trailer slowly rolls onto it’s side violently bringing the truck with it,as it throws me against the side glass shattering instantly as it hits the pavement.

I couldn’t move, there was no way to control anymore I just closed my eyes and prayed to die quickly as the truck careened through the guard rail into the deep blackness the nothing below. It all seemed to be in slow motion like it wasn’t happening but it was at that moment I could taste the blood in my throat as the cab just seemed to mold itself around me crunching, tearing metal and glass hitting me from all sides.

I was praying for forgiveness for all the things I done wrong in my life. I am going to miss my family back home asleep not knowing that this is going on to their loving father, and husband. I prayed for them to be able to accept this and to swiftly move on with their lives, I was crying as I woke up in the truck stop the next morning to a still beautiful place.what a horrible dream..

(c) 2006 Brian W. Pinkley


  1. Thank goodness it was a dream! And a creepy one at that.

    Hope you can visit mine.

  2. Jean, I cried the first time I read it. Thank you for commenting!


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