Saturday, May 21, 2011

Warning: Do Not Read This

I would like to be one of those prolific bloggers who post several times a week, that make me laugh or cry or cry laughing, with really fun, original stories. But I'm not. Sometimes my mind is a abuzz with words and thoughts, but a lot of times I just hear the equivalent of cartoon crickets. 

Remember the frog that only dances for the greedy guy when he’s alone, never on the stage? I’m that frog. 

My mind is a blank more often than not. I like to think that really creative, artistic types have the same problem but I think I'm probably more idiot than savant.

I start writing and then get side-tracked by all the shiny things the Internet has to offer.
Here are some pictures.

Grain silos in Omaha

Pine tree of some sort in Indiana

This week I got suckered into Velveeta sushi. I know, I know, a Chinese buffet in the middle of Nebraska is not exactly the place to go for sushi, but I’ve had plenty of pretty-ok grocery store sushi, it could have been like that. Sometimes I just want something different you know? It was wrapped in seaweed and rice just like the real stuff and the orange color didn’t bother me, it could have been salmon roe.(yes it could have!) It was shredded Velveeta. Creamy, chemical-y Velveeta. Seaweed does not make it better. Trust me.

A conversation with a waitress in Illinois:
Waitress: “Tonight’s special is all you can eat walleye. It’s really good”.
Me: “Oh, yum. Where do you get it from”?
Waitress: “It’s not walleye, it’s cod or perch or whatever. Nobody minds. We just call it walleye”.

Reflection of our truck in an abandoned building.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Tumbleweed Booty

Sure, we Tumbleweeds live in a very small space, work long hours, and have to use public bathrooms in which I get mistaken for a man, but there are also perks. I'm talking booty. Not J.Lo size booty, but still. (I said booty, hee hee)

Sometimes the stuff we deliver gets damaged by the people unloading it or the count is off and the customer rejects it and we must dispose of it. Most often it's something simple like a torn or dented box where the product inside is fine, but the customer finds it unacceptable.

Booty list:
*12 boxes of napkins (about 10,000, still using)
*3 bags of dog food
*75 bags of artichoke and spinach potato chips
*2 cases of V-8 Juice (low sodium, yech)
*30 bags of gourmet rabbit food (yes gourmet. We ate some of it. Not bad)

Funny how electronics or beer are never damaged.

Sometimes the shippers are generous and give us goodies.

*Sample bags of dog treats from Iams

*Almost expired cold sore medication (wth?) from a medical distributor

*Ginormous container of Arm&Hammer laundry detergent (it lasted a year)

*Cookies. Oodles and oodles of cookies from a commercial bakery in South Dakota

Walmart generic brand...but still.

That bakery was in Sioux City and the whole town smells like baking cookies. I want to live there. Nothing bad could happen in a place that smells like grandma's kitchen, right?

Well, in 1992 Money Magazine named Sioux Falls the Best Place to Live in America. In 2006, Men's Health Magazine ranked it 93 (out of 100) for Angriest Cities in the Nation. The angriest city? Orlando. Home of the happiest place on earth.

As if all this free booty wasn't enough, there's also found booty. Walking a dog in so many places turns up all sorts of things.

* A total of $27 in cash
* A real live beaver ( I didn't keep it)
* A fake beaver (don't ask)
* A purple rock
* A one-eyed Spider Man dressed as Santa


Friday, May 6, 2011

Tumbleweed Math and T-Rex Ninja Skills

Or, how 60 pounds of dog changes everything.

First the truck becomes even smaller. A mathematical ballet of sorts must be performed every time someone changes position, since there's only about 4 square feet of floor space. 

A. Driver seat.
B. Passenger seat.   
C. Four feet of floor space 
D. Bunk 

1. Himself 
2. Me
3. Jasmine

It basically goes like this:

While driving, 1 and 2=A+B and 3=D unless 3 is eating, then 3=C. If 2 needs to make a sandwich then 3 must equal B or 2 will have a hissy fit about her bubble being intruded upon.

Sometimes 3+1=A (as shown in figure 1a)

Figure 1a

Standard Operating Procedure wherein 1+2=AB-3xD (as shown in figure III)

figure III

Next, the fat lazy Tumbleweeds have to walk. A lot. 

Without a dog the day went something like this:

Wake up. Eat. Drive. Eat. Drive. Eat. Sleep.

With a dog:

Wake up. Walk the dog. Feed the dog. Drive. Stop and walk the dog. Drive. Stop and walk the dog. Eat. Walk the dog. Feed the dog. Walk the dog. Sleep.

And lastly I have to regain my ninja skills. I do the final walk the dog in the evenings alone to give Himself a chance to relax without me nagging him finish his log book and catch up on paperwork. I like the evening walks, just me and Jasmine. She's a really good listener and always agrees with me. She thinks I'm quite smart.

At most truck stops we can usually find a field, some woods or other non-peopled place. I try to give her a good walk, not just a quick pee in the nearest grass but I also try to stay in well lit places. The closer we are to cities we are, the more wary I am. Hobos in the bushes that want me to pet their red-nosed pig, I do my best to avoid.

I carry a knife. I try to look confident and like I would be too much trouble to mess with, (I am). I put myself in the frame of mind that if I were to be attacked, it will be a battle to the death, where I fight dirty and win and not wait around being a nice polite girl and get kidnapped by a sociopath who chains me in his basement, starving me so he can make a suit out of my skin. Not gonna happen.

I believe this mind-set will serve me well. 

One time I even squared up to face a two men who looked like they were trying to flank me. They were approaching in my direction as I was walking along a fence when they suddenly split up and came toward me from different directions. I put my back to the fence, stood firmly facing forward, my hand on the knife in my pocket and assumed a "I will kill you" look. They walked right past me. Oh, yeah. I'm tough.

In truth, I don't even think they saw me but I have a really active imagination and I had already plotted out the fight, their death and me being interviewed by 60 Minutes, Chuck Norris giving me an award and Angelina Jolie playing me in the movie about my brave fight.

Ima go all crazy T-Rex on you!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Three Tumbleweeds, Festus and Some Wyoming Facts

****Breaking News****

There is a new Tumbleweed in the truck. Her name is Jasmine and she is awesome. A 3 year old brindle Boxer who has been in foster care for 6 months after being surrendered by people who starved her because crack is expensive they could no longer afford to feed her. 

Deep thoughts.

Serious face.

It's been a year and a half since we lost Harley our first Boxer. I have written about her some, but she died before I started this blog so she never really got to be a famous Tumbleweed like us. Now that there are at least 3 people who read this who aren't related to me I'm sure the movie of our lives is being planned in Hollywood right now. I'm sure they'll want Festus to play my part. *fingers crossed*

We got her from the angels at  Black Hills Boxer Rescue in South Dakota, which is about 3 hours from where we live in Wyoming. We picked her up last Wednesday while we were home for a week and I forgot my #1 rule for driving around Wyoming and it's neighbors, which is to always bring food.

We had a light breakfast and a busy morning and left around noon, excited at the prospect of getting our four-legged daughter. In the first 100 miles we had passed a gas station and a Subway but held out because we thought we could wait for something a little better; we eat so many sandwiches in the truck that I avoid them when I can in our off time.
One of the sprawling urban areas of Wyoming.
Yes. Population 1.

You know how in cartoons one character looks at another and sees a steak dinner? That was how I was beginning to feel. We found a Taco John's around the 200 mile point, before Himself lost a finger, but I won't make that mistake again. I love the sparseness and open spaces of Wyoming and the fact that it's not very populated but it's not a good state in which to have low blood sugar!


Did you know the population of Wyoming is only 563,000? The New Jersey Turnpike has more people on it at any given time than we have living in the whole state!
Wyoming was the first state to give women the vote, the first to appoint a female justice of the peace and elected the first female governor. Wyoming is so friendly to women that even in our small town of Douglas (pop. 5,000) there are no fewer than 14,987 hair salons.

Can you believe she wants her seat back?

This is our first week in the truck with Jasmine. The truck is a little more crowded, a little more stinky but there's a whole lot more love and we are tickled to have her!