It has been a while. This year has been a very difficult year in trucking. The economy, to put it bluntly, sucks. Anne and I are doing fine and have survived this very down market. As an example, last year when I did a search for loads within 130 miles of Chattanooga (includes Atlanta, Nashville, Knoxville and Birmingham) on a Monday morning at 8:00 AM there would be anywhere from 3,000 to 3,500 loads available. Throughout the summer and fall we saw on average about 700 to 800 loads in that same search. Rates have reflected the total lack of freight. We know a number of people who have gone bankrupt and new truck sales have plummeted. All that said, we made it through the ugly market and Christmas season is upon us. We committed to run Amazon loads coast to coast from Thanksgiving until Christmas and we are actually working hard for the first time in a long time.
We took our first real vacation (more than a long weekend) ever. I know we are always goofing off but that is three days here and four days there and usually spontaneous. This was different. In October we flew to San Juan Puerto Rico for a few days and then took a seven day cruise to the Southern Caribbean. We learned that we are really not cruise people. We just felt that although we went to some awesome places we never really saw the culture or met the people. We had a marvelous time but the vacation would have been better if we had just spent 10 days in Puerto Rico. We fell in love with the place and we are definitely going back. We also visited St Maarten, Antigua, St Kitts, St Lucia and Barbados. Highlight of the trip was swimming with the Sting Rays in Antigua.
I am made for summer so coming home from the Caribbean was not easy. We have spent a lot of time at home in this market as I would rather be sitting in my recliner saying no to cheap loads than sitting in my truck doing the same. I just think it is easier to be picky when you are comfortable. Being a team has made a big difference as we can wait for team loads that HAVE to deliver on time and demand a fair rate. I will post again with some details of our loads in the last few weeks. Just wanted to check in since it has been so long.
A few more pictures from our vacation and one of my son on National TV, THAT was a cool moment.