Quick training update

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I’m laying in the top bunk of my trainer’s truck, listening to the low rumble of an idling truck next to us and the higher rumble of others passing by in front of us. We’re in New Jersey at a truck stop. It’s insanely busy with trucks weaving back and forth, circling and circling, waiting for a parking space to open up.

We got a spot right away – I think we got lucky. Justin (my trainer) helped me with getting set up to back into our spot since it’s so busy here. There’s not much room to move around, so I was glad to have his help. I’m not sure I’d have known what to do to get in here by myself. I had to weave the tractor around a few obstacles near a service garage before I could start backing, and I got it with one short pull up just to straighten out. We sat for quite a while and watched other drivers back into some even tighter spots, and cringed at a few going waaay too fast through the lot. It was interesting to watch the hustle and bustle.

I drove a lot yesterday, through four states, got up around 7am today and drove through Pennsylvania and delivered our load. I got to see some mountains and use my jake brake to help control my speed on some of the down hill grades.

I’m learning a TON from Justin out here. I don’t even know where I’d start if I were to make a list. It’s going really well. I’m a little nervous about Jersey traffic tomorrow, but I’m going to just focus on staying relaxed but alert.

It’s my first over-the-road run, so there’s a lot of firsts going on. I’ve seen two new states (PA and NJ), drove in mountains with a big truck, hired a lumper to unload our trailer, slept on the top bunk, and just tonight I took my first truck stop shower. That was actually a good experience. I got my own room with a shower, sink and toilet, and they even supplied the towels… and it was really clean. Bonus!

I’m having fun out here. This doesn’t feel like work yet at all, and the cool thing is that it’s only going to get better. It’s really looking like next week Adam and I could get our first run together.

Well, I have so much I want to write, but I need to get some sleep. 3am is going to get here very quickly!


Tonight I love showers. As much as I love getting dirty, getting clean is just as great.

Thanks for reading and being a part of my journey!

With love,
Toots Magoots
(Robin Grapa)

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2 thoughts on “Quick training update

  1. Thank you Robin for deciding to go for the extra training. Even though you could have done it without, the little extra is always worth it on the long haul. Kinda like just a few more miles on the trail…

    • Yeah, it’s been going awesome. In fact, my trainer said he thinks I’m doing great and it sounds like I’ll be done training at the end of this week. I’ve really learned a lot. And I am loving this so far!

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