How does it feel to be a trucker? Mississippians describe life on the road
During his first year as a nationwide truck driver, Michael Tidwell hauled a variety of packaged goods in his 18 wheel Peterbilt. “It’s everything from coffins to food to lawn mowers. “
There can be long days and nights on the road in the trucking industry. But the pros outweigh the cons for the 23-year-old from Lumberton, Mississippi.
“The wages are good. And I come home to see my grandparents a few days a month and go out, ”Tidwell said during a stop in early June at Love’s Travel Stop in Flowood.
It was pouring rain this Wednesday afternoon in central Mississippi, but it didn’t bother the Bay St. Louis native. ” I like what I do. I see the country and I get paid to do it. ”
His favorite place to haul goods on road trips along America’s highways is said to be one of Wyoming’s beautiful mountain peaks. There are plenty of mountains to see, including the 13,770 foot tall Grand Teton. For visitors to Wyoming, the Rocky Mountains are among the most beautiful mountains in Cowboy State and fabulous places for recreational activities.
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As a truck driver for the past 12 months, Tidwell has traveled to 46 states except Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, and Alaska. “I would recommend it – absolutely. “
Breaking up his long-distance commute time, Tidwell makes periodic stops at truck spots like Love’s. With plenty of parking, it’s a convenient spot just off the US 80’s to hang out in game rooms, grab a few snacks, rest, and get back on the highway.
At the time, nationwide diesel prices continued to rise, reaching $ 3.14 per gallon in Mississippi. Motorists were paying $ 2.69 for unleaded gasoline on June 2 at Rankin County pumps.
But the Mississippian also sees the negative side of the trucking industry. “People don’t want to be away from home for that long. And dangerous winter conditions, with snow, ice and sleet, can make life miserable for millions of truckers and motorists. “During winter storms (in 2021), I was one of the few drivers on the road.
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“Being away from home is hard”
Not far from a variety of food choices at Love’s Travel Center – from Subway to Chester’s and Godfather’s Pizza – Mike Turner says the opportunity to earn a fairly decent salary as a truck driver keeps him in the business.
Turner has hauled dry goods, paper, furniture and more in his 18 wheeler for the past 17 years. The Oklahoma City resident will stick to it, even if “being away from home is difficult, especially when you have family.”
It’s not all work when traveling from coast to coast. Turner finds time to listen to music, make phone calls with his family, and regularly visit truck stops to relax.
Truck driving has taken Turner to 48 states over the years, with the exception of Alaska and Hawaii. He likes places to do a bit of sightseeing, including scenic spots in Washington, Oregon and Arizona. He works 65 to 70 hours a week driving a big rig, but he wouldn’t want it any other way.