Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Santa Rampage

Well, here it is, Christmas morning and I remember why I don't like most of my family:

Christmas ... Bah Freakin' Humbug. It always makes me remember why I hate interacting with my family. My niece-in-law made a beautiful scrapbook for my dad, all about my Mom. She did a wonderful job. Each of my brothers has a page or two, and there's a lovely pic of mom and the three boys labeled "The Children." Me? I'm not in that picture, I'm not in the book. At all. I'm sure she simply didn't have baby pictures of me, or shots of me with mom, but she has a PHONE doesn't she?! Anyone looking through the book wouldn't know I even existed. My brother David was there, her FIL, and he was laughing about it. I'm very angry because you aren't supposed to cry on Christmas morning. I still have freakin' dinner with my other SIL this afternoon; that should be fun. Riiiight.

That was my rant on the scifi forums. And relatives wonder why I prefer my burner family. Anyway, Santa Rampage in Las Vegas. My, my, my. I will start with taking the steel loads down; because I have to talk about the Annoying Persistence of Timeshare representatives, Santa Rampage, Coyote Ugly and the Flying Bra, then wrap it up with Zumanity by Cirque de Soleil. Wow. And that's a lot of blogging in a day!

MyLarry picked me up at the Perry Port of Entry on Thursday morning. They rolled the big trucks through the scale; he was freaking out because he had been the lead truck and now had fallen behind. I told him to relax, that he would catch up. He did. There were four Central semis carrying oversized loads of steel. The beams were monstrous assemblies; mylarry's gross weight was 140,000 and he was 16 foot 6 inches wide. That's big. Four trucks and eight pilot cars. The whole pilot car thing was interesting; the car up front would call back on the CB to let the drivers know about guardrails and narrow spots and whatnot. We did not head down I-15 through Salt Lake; instead we detoured west to Wendover, then south through Ely, NV to Vegas. The construction in the Virgin River Gorge had reduced the traffic lanes to fourteen feet, no way would the big beams fit through.

I did not like the woman pilot in charge, she was bad-mouthing mylarry to the other drivers. The other drivers weren't too pleased, they're his friends. We had stopped for fuel for us and the trucks and I was buying sandwiches inside with the others while mylarry fueled the semi. "Lynette" was going on about mylarry "talks like he's a rocket scientist, and he's no smarter than the bottom of my shoe." I gave her the Look of Death, but she didn't know who I was. The other drivers jumped in to defend him, telling her he was ex-Navy, the senior driver, and he did know a lot of things. The next day at another stop we were introduced. She had the good sense to look a little sheepish. The pilots were talking on the Cb about the time zone change, and mylarry nearly got on to say, "It's a time zone, it isn't rocket science." I wouldn't let him. I should have!

We had to spend the night in a truckstop at Ely; oversize loads cannot be moved at night. Brrr! Cold little dump of a town. Snowy up on White Pine Pass; but once the trucks were rolling there was no place to stop or turn around. Scary and slidy! Larry was so wide the edge of the steel beam was over the guardrails; he tok out one milemarker and two orange barrels. This is a two lane highway, not an interstate so there was traffic coming toward us. The lead pilot would call, "four back" or "eighteen back." That's a car or a semi. Number of wheels, yes? She would also call ahead, "Big truck, there's four seventeen foot wide trucks coming at you." They'd give us all the room they could, riding on the rumble strip. Once we got back onto I-15 heading into Vegas, each truck straddled a white line and took up two lanes. The pilots guided us into the SME staging area which is a coned off portion of Frank Sinatra Blvd., then they took off. The construction guys came and got the trucks one at a time. They blocked traffic, traffic which was detoured in the first place, so the street is confusing. Mylarry was so wide he had to go down the southbound lanes heading north. Cars followed him onto the wrong lanes! What a mess with flaggers only on the north end. When the time came to deliver, the construction site had to use the giant crane to lift the loads instead of the usual giant forklifts.

I have pictures and will upload them later.


kahanabay said...

I'm truly sorry to read about all the family issues you have to deal with. I can empathize, but you seem to have wound up with more than your fair share. Thank goodness for friends.

Boo, hiss to the woman who was dissing yourlarry. Jealousy, without doubt, but her spitefulness is inexcusable.

Your account of traveling with the big trucks brought to mind my own experiences with mountain roads in winter. I can't imagine what it would be like in a truck, with so much size and weight, and so little room to maneuver.

Love the pic of yourlarry wearing the elf cap. :)

MaggieMayDay said...

Oh, stay tuned for news of the Rampage!

kahanabay said...

Copy that. I'll have some alcohol nearby to help me join in the fun.