Tuesday, 8 December 2015

It's Time for a Road Trip – On the Road with Bronco Billy

It's early December, and winter has set in with its short days and long nights, and uncertain road conditions.  The season’s not very conducive to a road trip, but you can still take a road trip in your imagination, with help of “On the Road with Bronco Billy”.  So, sit back and go on a ten day trucking trip in a big rig, through western North America, from Alberta to Texas, and back again.  The trip is set in early May, so you can forget about winter for a while.  Explore the countryside, learn some trucking lingo, observe the shifting cultural norms.
It’s free this week (Dec 9-13, 2015) on Amazon, 99 cents otherwise.

Here’s the summary:

What follows is an account of a ten day journey through western North America during a working trip, delivering lumber from Edmonton Alberta to Dallas Texas, and returning with oilfield equipment. The writer had the opportunity to accompany a friend who is a professional truck driver, which he eagerly accepted. He works as a statistician for the University of Alberta, and is therefore is generally confined to desk, chair, and computer. The chance to see the world from the cab of a truck, and be immersed in the truck driving culture was intriguing. In early May 1997 they hit the road.

Some time has passed since this journal was written and many things have changed since the late 1990’s. That renders the journey as not just a geographical one, but also a historical account, which I think only increases its interest.

We were fortunate to have an eventful trip - a mechanical breakdown, a near miss from a tornado, and a large-scale flood were among these events. But even without these turns of fate, the drama of the landscape, the close-up view of the trucking lifestyle, and the opportunity to observe the cultural habits of a wide swath of western North America would have been sufficient to fill up an interesting journal.

The travelogue is about 20,000 words, about 60 to 90 minutes of reading, at typical reading speeds.

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