McGee: Enter the sandman

Some truckers would call it a "disco party," what some of us saw last Saturday on one of the town's main drags: An 18-wheeler stopped, surrounded by cop cars, lights a-flashin.'

It reminded me of my own "disco party" back when I drove a big rig.

I was hauling to Palm Springs, Calif. I made a wrong turn and ended up in Rancho Mirage.

I spotted a vacant lot and headed for it to turn my rig around.

There's a big difference between a High Plains lot with its caliche versus one in the Mojave Desert.

Within moments I was axle-deep in sand.

I called my dispatcher.

"I'll send a tow truck," he said.

I put my head on the steering wheel, pondering my stupid move and wondering if I was paying the tow bill. Soon I was joined by three Rancho Mirage police cars, lights a-flashin'.

They asked me to get out of the truck and if it was OK to search it. Was I going to say "No"?

While one officer rifled through my stuff another examined my papers.

"We just had a report of a trucker either dead or passed out with his head on the steering wheel."

"Well, that's me," I said. "I was mortifyingly embarrassed I'd gotten stuck."

"Mortifyingly?" he asked with his head cocked to the side.

"Mortifyingly," I said.

About that time the cop searching my cab climbed down and gave a nod to the others.

"We're done sir," said the policeman as he turned to walk away.

"Have a nice day."

"I'm not charged with anything?" I asked.

"No sir, it's not against the law to get stuck in a vacant lot," he

said without turning around.

The tow truck arrived, pulled me out of the lot inch by inch and I delivered my load on time.

When I got back to the office they had a new nickname for me:

Sandman.

Grant McGee is a long-time broadcaster and former truck driver who rides bicycles and likes to talk about his many adventures on the road of life.

Contact him at: bikedude@plateautel.net.

THE HIGHWAY DISCO PARTY

Some truckers would call it a "disco party," what some of us saw last Saturday on one of the town's main drags: An 18-wheeler stopped, surrounded by cop cars, lights a-flashin.'

It reminded me of my own "disco party" back when I drove a big rig.

I was hauling to Palm Springs, Calif. I made a wrong turn and ended up in Rancho Mirage.

I spotted a vacant lot and headed for it to turn my rig around.

There's a big difference between a High Plains lot with its caliche versus one in the Mojave Desert.

Within moments I was axle-deep in sand.

I called my dispatcher.

"I'll send a tow truck," he said.

I put my head on the steering wheel, pondering my stupid move and wondering if I was paying the tow bill. Soon I was joined by three Rancho Mirage police cars, lights a-flashin'.

They asked me to get out of the truck and if it was OK to search it. Was I going to say "No"?

While one officer rifled through my stuff another examined my papers.

"We just had a report of a trucker either dead or passed out with his head on the steering wheel."

"Well, that's me," I said. "I was mortifyingly embarrassed I'd gotten stuck."

"Mortifyingly?" he asked with his head cocked to the side.

"Mortifyingly," I said.

About that time the cop searching my cab climbed down and gave a nod to the others.

"We're done sir," said the policeman as he turned to walk away.

"Have a nice day."

"I'm not charged with anything?" I asked.

"No sir, it's not against the law to get stuck in a vacant lot," he

said without turning around.

The tow truck arrived, pulled me out of the lot inch by inch and I delivered my load on time.

When I got back to the office they had a new nickname for me:

Sandman.

Grant McGee is a long-time broadcaster and former truck driver who rides bicycles and likes to talk about his many adventures on the road of life.

Contact him at: bikedude@plateautel.net.

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