I Spy: From trees to toi­let pa­per,

Big Rigs - - COLUMN - I SPY ON THE ROAD ispy@bi­grigs.com.au

Drought brings home truths

DE­LIV­ER­ING hay in­ter­state and see­ing live­stock on the road has made a well-known Vic­to­rian small fleet owner re­alise just how much the drought has af­fected farm­ers in parts of New South Wales and Queens­land.

The 59-year-old long-time truckie lives at Mil­dura and has been de­liv­er­ing hay and stock feed to farm­ers in the St Ge­orge and Cun­na­mulla re­gions of Queens­land re­cently.

Along the way he has been held up nu­mer­ous times by stock that have wan­dered onto the road.

“It has mainly been from Co­bar in NSW and the Queens­land bor­der. The cat­tle are look­ing for some­thing to eat and come onto the road. The dry weather causes this. The drought has been dev­as­tat­ing for many peo­ple, who I feel sorry for,” he said.

When Spy spoke to this veteran, he had pulled over be­side the road in his trusty white Ken­worth 604 just out of Ouyen.

He said the hay came from the Mallee re­gion of Vic­to­ria.

This gent has also been pick­ing up pine posts lately from Co­lac and trans­port­ing them to Ma­reeba on the Ather­ton Table­lands.

He is from a fam­ily of road trans­port in­dus­try peo­ple. His 88-year-old fa­ther suf­fers from de­men­tia and is a res­i­dent in a Vic­to­rian aged care home.

Ad­ver­sity over­come

THERE is a truckie who is a good mate of Spy who can’t read or write.

These are things most of us take for granted.

How­ever, de­spite this, the mid­dle-aged driver does his job well, de­liv­er­ing goods around his home town and to nearby prop­er­ties.

He is the first to ad­mit that he never re­ceived much of an ed­u­ca­tion but has been re­luc­tant to have a story done be­cause he likes to keep this to him­self.

A son told me that fam­ily mem­bers do most of the pa­per­work in­volved with his job.

See­ing this bloke driv­ing his truck makes me re­alise just how much ad­ver­sity he has over­come.

Bunker gets in right

RUGBY league fol­low­ers of all clubs would have opin­ions on some con­tro­ver­sial de­ci­sions by the “bunker” this sea­son.

For read­ers who don’t fol­low that code, the bunker con­sists of sev­eral of­fi­cials who re­view a po­ten­tial try scored if the on-field ref­eree is not cer­tain.

With that back­ground info out of the way, Spy can re­veal an in­ci­dent in which a truckie was banned from a cer­tain ho­tel af­ter be­ing deemed to be in a melee with an­other pa­tron.

This venue has a zero-tol­er­ance policy about these things so both lads were banned for three months.

This driver has been a long-time off-duty drinker at the es­tab­lish­ment and sev­eral other reg­u­lars went in to bat for him with man­age­ment.

Sev­eral of his mates re­sem­bled bar­ris­ters in a court­room as they claimed it was out of char­ac­ter for him to be in­volved in such non­sense.

Af­ter check­ing out the closed cir­cuit tele­vi­sion footage of the in­ci­dent our mate had his ban “sus­pended” im­me­di­ately af­ter a month.

Spy even had a cold beer

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

BEAU­TI­FUL KEN­WORTH: The washed Ken­worth in all its glory.

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