Friday, April 18, 2014

The Long Nose Pete

Chapter 2 Page 3 The Long Nose Pete I promised you a Peterbilt so here is the deal. Being of a certain age where I don’t want to shout out about it, I asked my family that in 2013 for my birthday I wanted to have a ride in a new, flashy, Optimus Prime looking, Long Nose Pete. After wading through all the “whys” and “hows” my brother, Charles Ayer, who works selling hydraulic systems for big rigs, volunteered to ask Dale Snowden of the Rush Truck Center in Pico Rivera if this was possible, and sure enough after Snowden looked at my website he said “I would like her to be part of Customer Appreciation Day that was coming up in November.” Right on schedule, as arranged, on the morning of Nov. 7, 2013, a Long Nose Pete arrived at the Rush Truck Center in Sylmar to pick me up. There she was, a viper red tractor with 100 miles on the speedometer. This was a real Optimus Prime moment for me. I focused on all the bells and whistles, the square nose, its horns, lights, chrome, exhaust pipes, it was all here and standing beside her was driver Anthony, from Edy’s Transport. We were about to take flight, right down the Interstate 5 to Pico Rivera. I confess that I asked my husband if I could ask for a handsome truck driver with tattoos to be my driver and he said “Go for it, Babe.” Before we got into the cockpit, I asked Anthony, “Where are your tattoos?”, hoping that they weren’t in a private place. Relief, he rolled up his t-shirt sleeve and right there was a Navajo Indian Chief. How great was this! We bonded right away. His name is Anthony Cruz. We took off, taking the 210 Freeway to the Interstate 5. As we all know Los Angeles traffic, especially on the I-5, can be a bear, but not this day. It was truly a magical drive! My family, Vicki, Alan, and Dylan Parzyk of Vista, CA, circled us in a Nissan Murano; they were beside us, in front of us, and back of us in order that Vicki could get some video shots for later viewing. Meanwhile, back in the cockpit, Anthony described the console--our tractor had 25 gears to 50 gears, depending on need. It had a warning signal for overpass heights. Braking was just a matter of pushing a button. One could push again and again and go slower and slower. Not today, we were going the maximum speed down the highway. Anthony was in communication with Pico because we were suppose to arrive at noon where a red carpet was waiting along with flashing cameras. Now, this wasn’t all for me because this was for Customer Appreciation Day. Dale Snowden opened the door for me (Anthony was suppose to arrive so my side was open to the red carpet). Jerry Conrad, the Sales Manager was there too to welcome me. I was given flowers and Stan (my husband) who was riding in the SUV met me there to walk me down the red carpet--a birthday to remember. Peterbilt even gave my game wannaBtruckers away as part of the raffle. Wow!!! One more thing--for the past two years I have been trying to get my home state, West Virginia, to present a float in the Tournament of Roses Parade. I’m still trying and happily Peterbilt of Southern California has volunteered a new Long Nose Pete to be in the Parade as part of the West Virginia float. Of course, I have to get permission from the Tournament of Roses Parade Committee. Perhaps another one of my dreams will come true. All I know is I have fun trying.