"if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much room"

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

meetin' and greetin'

Sunday morning we were up early and headed for breakfast with the kids and grand kids. One last family meal before hitting the road. :-)
We enjoyed the time we were able to spend here and it passed by so quickly but we need to make a few $$'s to keep this dream alive, so off we go again.
Our first stop was south of Indianapolis at a Speedco to get the oil and filters changed on the motor home. This was our first time at one of these "big rig quick lubes" and I was impressed with their service. The price was reasonable and we were back on the road in less then an hour. Next door to Speedco was a Flying J truck stop so we pulled in and topped off the fuel and propane. We also hooked the Dakota onto the rear of the motorhome before heading back out onto the highway.
Traffic was pretty heavy as we headed south and there was a steady stream of cars coming at us as well. I guess everyone was taking advantage of the nice week end weather.
We had only gone about 40 miles when I noticed something wrong with the Dakota. I was looking in my mirror and saw the trucks mirror peeking around the rear of the motorhome. I'm not supposed to see that! I quickly checked the rear view camera and started slowing down. I could see that the tow bar was not aligned properly and knew we had a major issue and needed to get stopped. I let the engine brake slow us at a steady rate while I moved to the shoulder of the highway and slowed to a stop. Whew, we got the whole rig off the road safely. A quick inspection showed the locking pin on one of the tow bar arms was missing. I'm not sure how that happened, I always, always double and triple check the cotter pins that hold the pins in place. Rudee and I quickly unhooked the other arm and all the safety chains and wires. Since we didn't have a spare locking pin she just followed me the rest of the way. One thing is clear, we will be getting the fancy cotter pins that you lock with a key!
The rest of the trip was uneventful and we pulled into our campground just outside Campbellsville, Kentucky around 4:30 pm.  We were told (via email) that there would probably not be anyone here to check us in and to just pick any available site. We were met by some of the other residents, all of them Amazon workers, who showed us the few sites available. This park is pretty small and all the sites are being used by Amazon. We checked out the sites (there were 4 available) and chose #6. We had to ask our neighbor to move his vehicle so we could back in, seems like he has been using most of "our" site to park his big dually truck the last week or so. The sites are not large and parking tow vehicles and toads is even tighter but there is a grassy area nearby where everyone can park, it's just not right outside your door. Only a minor inconvenience in my mind.
We got set up quickly and met a few of our neighbors and, soon to be, co-workers. We also got some suggestions for dinner and headed to the Creekside Restaurant for their Sunday buffet. Good choice! Thanks Harry and Jessica!
Yesterday we had our "meet and greet" hosted by Amazon at the Heartland Campground. We saw a few videos and met some of the folks at Amazon, it was nice to finally put a face to the name. :-)
We also got our shifts and job assignments. We are working in "single toys" Tuesday through Friday 5:30 pm until 4:00 am. We had initially asked for day shifts but are not really unhappy with nights, we just need to adjust our habits a little. The big plus is we get a .60/hour shift differential. More money is always a good thing. :-)
We have our orientation later today and then start our night shifts on Wednesday. Our first week we work 5 hour shifts as a "hardening" process and then they extend the hours gradually until we are working the full 10 hours. I'll keep you posted.


  1. Single Toys isn't a bad gig. Enjoy safety school today!

  2. Glad you noticed the issue with your toad and nothing worse happened. We were in single toys our first year. I'll be interested to see how you like it. We also work nights. It takes some getting used to, but we like the shift bonus too :) Good luck!

  3. Didn't know that did "hardening" -- probably a good thing. Will be interested to hear about your Amazon experience as it could be in our future.

    The one time we went to Speedco early on with our motor home, they didn't have all of our filters and it was going to take to the next day to get them so we headed on. Then had them done at a diesel service shop and they found a thing or two that needed some attention while doing the filters. Ever since we have had our filters done in diesel shops including some times at Cummins so that we get a chassis inspection at the same time.

  4. Someone removed your cotter pin after you made your walk around. This happened to us in oregon. A dirty trick that some think is funny. Sorry it happened to you. We also purchased lock and key pins.

  5. Good luck and have fun. We worked there two years ago as pickers and had a good time.

  6. We all do what we have to do to keep the dream going!
    Things don't always go smoothly in this travel life... does it? But it all adds to our list of experiences!

  7. Glad to hear you caught the problem before it became a big one.
    We were there last year, just a few months into our F/T new life. great town, people, company and area. Be sure to see the Makers Mark Distillery around the holidays, really cool.

  8. Good Luck! We'll be following along. We go out tomorrow on our own. Kinda fun driving the back roads around Lake Mead.