Truckers Wife

I am intrigued to know how many of you have taken your partners out on the open road for a few days or weeks?
When I first met Ben he wasn’t shy at all about telling me his passion and career which was just all about trucks and haulage. Did this put me off? No far from it, in the last few months of him being on the road I threw some sickies off work and spent a period of 2 weeks with him. Didn’t really cross my mind that we would be spending all this time together in a small space, or not being able to have a shower everyday and possibly peeing in a bucket. But I went with it, have camped at V Fest a few times, that never bothered me but being out of your face all weekend at a music festival you kind of don’t give a shit (ed.) monkeys really. But it didn’t seem to bother me being away in the lorry with Ben. I loved being out on the open road, seeing parts of UK that I hadn’t seen before, or even motorways for the fact, learning about his job and love for lorries, the different models, of what looked good and what didn’t, the different companies and owner drivers and the sound of a V8, ( we listen for those sometimes in the summer when the bedroom window is open, fun in the bedroom :).
Sleeping in what I considered dubious lorry parks or outside docks, and Ben telling me that the trailer doors needed to be left open overnight, that spooked me a bit for fear of someone getting into the cab (but probably couldn’t do that from inside a trailer doh!). Bit of adult fun inside the cab with the curtains closed and having other lorries parked up next to you 🙂 kinky!, being the first woman to use the showers at the Birmingham Toll road Services, (that was the best shower I have ever had), or even being snuck into Avonmouth docks showers at the Timber terminal, now that was an experience. They were bloody disgusting and it horrified me that there were toilets in the shower cubicle, it made me heave when Ben said someone could be taking a dump next to us. Quickest shower in history, plenty of men saying “was that a woman”, yes it certainly was who couldn’t wait to get out of there. That I wouldn’t want to experience again.
I got stuck in to helping Ben strap aluminium logs onto the curtain sider at Holyhead, with my steel toe caps, shorts t-shirt high Vis and hard hat, up on top following instructions from the expert!! Good fun!.
During my short travels with Ben I also visited Kirkby Copper Factory, revolting loos, but great cooked breakfast, tried black pudding for the first time.
Loved being able to people watch from up inside the cab, and other drivers staring in whilst I sat with my legs up on the dash enjoying the drive by a man I knew I was falling for fast, good music, and the sunrays coming in through the windscreen, bliss.
I never thought I would enjoy my time away in the lorry, but I did, I loved it (couldn’t do it all the time), but could understand more why Ben loved it so much, travelling all over the UK and Europe, seeing beautiful scenery, iconic landmarks and enjoying the sound and feel of Claudia (that’s what I named Ben’s Mercedes Actros, sorry forgot to mention that at the start).
Funny he kept her absolutely immaculate, always sweeping her out, curtains had to be tied back properly and symmetrical, beds always made no mess anyway, no outdoor shoes inside the cab, but she was his home 5-6 days a week, so cant criticise I am the same about our family home.
I know that he misses being out on the open road and having a lorry to love and care for, which is why he puts as much time as he can, love and passion into his blog, his model collection and getting involved and visiting truck shows here in the UK and Europe.
Sometimes I would meet him at Purfleet (with a dinner cooked by my mum for him to reheat easily in the microwave) and stay overnight with him until he needed to leave around 3-4am, enjoyed meeting drivers from all over (Lord Rylance from Buxton) and hearing tall tales of truckers lives.
I don’t know whether you have enjoyed this read or not, but for ages I have wanted to write something on the blog so took the opportunity whilst Ben is doing bins and recycling, great job for blokes!!:)
I would love to know if your spouses share your passion, have experienced similar trips to me, better or worse. I think it takes a certain type of woman to accept the life of a trucker and what goes with it, but you may not agree.
Oh and I have been told to upload this photo, Ben junior is what I will call him to protect our 4 year olds identity, he has suddenly found an interest in Eddie Stobart, hence the photo. He loves lorry spotting, he knows a Scania lorry, supermarket ones, Mammoet, HC Wilsons, Kersey Freight, and Stobarts. He isn’t quite as bad as his daddy but I don’t think it will be long. but I could be wrong he may become more interested in four legged equines and our daughter will be mad on trucks!!:)

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I hope this blog post finds you and your families well.

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3 thoughts on “Truckers Wife

  1. Nice work Mrs Sheldrake!!

    Great effort.

    It is so true what you write. From a blokes perspective it is incredible to share the places, faces and moments we enjoy out on the road each day and night. So many times when by myself I wish I could share the perfect sunset across a dry Aussie landscape, cool evening air blowing in the window after a sweltering day or just the hum of the diesel sucking in dense night air while ticking through the miles.

    Ame and I have spent many days in the truck. In fact the very first day we really met (and fell for one anther) was a whole day working around Melbourne. Loads of new Porsches, Beemers etc was certainly a novelty too!! 😄

    We’ve spent many days in the truck around Tasmania, stopping for Devonshire Teas and little treats along the way and enjoying the gorgeous vistas. We’ve driven the Nullabor Plain together. I picked Ame up from Adelaide airport as she had been working in Sydney that day and off we went. There was no hurry so took all the tourist turnoffs along the way. Three or four days later we were in Perth. On previous trips across ‘The Paddock’ I have longed to share the incredible trip and when my beloved made the suggestion to hop on a plane to Adelaide to meet me rather than return home to Melbourne I was stoked.

    It is a great thing to be able to do what we love each day and have the support from our partners to do it. It is also truly lucky to have someone in our lives who understands why we love what we do and the depth of our passion for being an owner driver.

    The driving of the machine is just a part of the attraction. Owning your machine, infact considering yourself and the machine a team, speccing the right machine for the job, developing a network of support within the industry, understanding the specific area of the industry we work in, keenly following development of new practices and new models, running a small business and of course providing a valued service all add up to an addictive vocation.

    Say hello to your man when he returns from his domestic duties, be great to see him back behind the wheel.

    Have a great Australia Day long weekend!!!

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  2. Great read Mrs Sheldrake, I thoroughly enjoyed it. A shame no ladies have made any comment, but I’m sure there are plenty out there who feel the same. Enjoyed reading the comment from Julian Baker too, I am an Aussie but now live in the UK, and there used to be a regular contribution in the famous Australian trucking mag (“Truckin’ Life”) called ‘Her Side of the Load’ which I used to read every month 25-30 years ago.. Thanks again, Dan

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