Sunday, October 26, 2008


Ever wonder how truckers cope with things like laundry? Well, I'm gonna reveal some of our not-so-secret (to truckers, anyway) methods. There are, of course, coin laundry facilities in most of the larger truckstop chains, but what if you don't have eight bucks or so worth of quarters? And change can be hard to come by sometimes on weekends -- the only time many drivers have the downtime to do their laundry. The majority of banks are locked up tight on weekends, and they get as many of the bullcrap holidays as the USPS does. Columbus Day?? Good grief! Can anyone tell me why Americans even have a holiday celebrating an Italian, who sailed in Spanish ships, and discovered South America??!!! The Vikings discovered this country, so why ain't there a Leif Erikson Day??

But, getting back to laundry. . . How do you think I dried out my soaked socks and shoes, during the monsoons I endured last week? Simple. Bungee cord hooked through holes in the passenger side step plates. Tuck shoes under bungee, tie laces to it. Drive and let the moving air current dry them in no time flat. And the same for my socks. Wring water from them, then crank down the passenger window a hair. Insert socks through opening in window,then crank window back up, trapping them with the glass. Drive and the breeze will dry them quickly. Okay, okay -- it might look like something out of the Beverly Hillbillies, but it works!!! Poor man's clothes dryer.

I have a younger friend, who drives for another company, and he thought that he had "invented" this little method. Ha! The joke's on him, because I've been doing stuff like that for ten years!! Heck, I've even seen women drivers use this method, and even for their, uh, unmentionables. I had a red Kenworth pass me one night not long ago, and it had a bra and two pair of cute little floral print panties hanging out the passenger window, flapping in the breeze. I couldn't resist -- got on the CB and said something to the effect that the driver was either a woman, or some guy got damned lucky and had one heck of a night!! Female laughter came across the airwaves and the voice of the driver was definitely a sweet-sounding lady. I laughed and complimented her on her excellent taste in undies. She laughed and we had a pleasant conversation for the next fifty miles or so.

Well, I have hung my own "unmentionables" out that window, too, when it was necessary and I'd run out of clean undies. Wash 'em out in a truckstop, or rest area sink (truckstop preferred, because they don't have those insane faucets that cut themselves off after a spurt or two of water). Hang 'em out the window, usually at night, when fewer people will notice and you won't have some smartass teasing you on the radio. In emergency situations, I have dried them in the daytime, and to hell with what anyone thinks. Just turn off the CB and cruise along. You get some weird looks from the cars sometimes, but I just grinned at them and trucked onward.

Where there's a will, there's a way, and when you're stuck in a truck all the time you often have to improvise. We've all gotten very good at that over the years.


Wil said...

Time was, I'd put a change of clothes in a five gallon covered pail that I got from the local doughnut emporium, added some hot water and soap and suspended same from a cross frame of my station wagon by a short, heavy duty spring. Rinse and repeat at the next stop. Set aside for drying on a horizontal wood frame as wind flowed in from the open windows (no A/C). Worked a charm.

Nancy said...

I always love your stories of life on the road... looking forward to more! Stay safe out there!

Nancy :-)

Big Red said...

This is a good one, can't wait to tell loboman. I know he will get a kick out of it and maybe even use it if he isn't already, LOL.He hates wet shoes and socks.
Keep safe out there and keep your angel in your jump seat.
Hugs, Cyndy