Well that's it, Royal Mail bit has come to an end. The last 6 weeks have been an experience. at the same time valuable experience was learned in driving their lorries and driving in the conditions that we've had for the past few days. The job in itself is pretty good but the waiting at Heathrow is a bit much. Lately the wait has been longer than usual and it can be frustrating at times just sitting there and watching other lorries drive past. To be quite honest I'd go back there if the opportunity comes back up. Now for a well earned rest over Christmas and then think about the job front in the New Year. Here's hoping that it will be as good as the past few months have been.


Amazed at the way this volvo handled itself today on the icy roads. Not a slip anywhere, well impressed.
There has to be a reason why, yesterday I had a Merc axtros and for a manual it wasn't that bad. The gearbox was a bit stiff but not bad, till I got to Mount Royal that it. 'Your brakes & linings have worn out' was the message that flashed up on the dash in a lovely Red colour. Immediate stop and call the depot, then called the breakdown service and 3 hours later a mechanic turned up. He checked the breaks and all other bits and found that all were OK, the computer was throwing up some wonderful errors and the advice was too rude to print. On return the unit was Vor'd, getting good at doing this.


OK, so lightning does strike twice in the same place. Today I did a 'small' job as I had a spare day. Turned up at Allport and sat in the waiting room for about 40 minutes. Then was given a job and told that the unit and trailer are on the bay. X Reg DAF with a splitter box, started to do my checks and found the Air pipe (red) when plugged in made a horrible hissing noise. It sounded like a snake got loose, obviously there is a problem here. Stopped everything and told a manager of the problem, 'can you go to our depot in Southall and get it fixed' he asked. Well why not, got there and the mechanic changed a washer and that was that, or so I thought. Got back and started to couple up and guess what, the ABS cable was totally smashed, the wires were pulled out of the socket. VOR the unit I thought reported that as well and the question came up straight away 'can you go to DAF and get another'. At this time it was 2.5 hours since I started work and actually done nothing but go and fix the unit.

Got back and coupled up and went on my way to High Wycombe, no idea where the customer was but it made things interesting. Arrived and got through security and on the bay. Keys taken of me and loaded up. Back to the depot and got tipped, asked where do the units and trailers go and got a sarcastic remark so decided to leave it on the bay. Keys & documents in, timesheet signed and home.

Should I charge the agency for being a mechanic.........................................


Ever get the feeling that the day will just not get better, on Friday I got that feeling. Arriving at Mount Royal I just couldn't get on the bay. Shunt after shunt and bugger all. After about 10 attempts I finally got there. This was about 11:15 and then nothing. It took till about 13:00 to get unloaded and then when they finally started to load it turned to another fiasco. My lot got loaded on the wrong lorry and of course had to be reloaded. Then at the horseshoe it took hours to get tipped and when I turned up for the second run it was already late. I decided to get the job done so got loaded up and went back to Heathrow with the second mail run.

Finished back at Langley at 11pm, another long day but didn't expect Saturday to be almost the same but this time i couldn't do the second run. Run out of working hours and had to take the second run to Langley to swap drivers. Oh happy days, four days off.


Great start to the weeks shift, the lorry was VOR'd by me as the wheels wobbled and the steering was loose. Then I couldn't find a trailer that I needed. Managed to get one eventually but it was full of empty cages so had to take it to Mount Royal and get it unloaded. On arrival I noticed that one of the trailer's tyres was doggy, it had a chunk missing which I couldn’t see when it was parked on the bay as the offending bit was hidden from view. Felt a bit unsure about driving it full but not much choice, on return to Langley it was immediately VOR'd, pity as there is a shortage of curtainsiders.

The Lexus update - Nice car but drinks fuel and it is geared wrong, way too much torque in the upper gears. Have to be doing at least 80mph before engaging the 6th gear. If engaged before that speed the engine labours and the car vibrates. According to the trip computer I'm getting around 29.9mpg.



This is probably straying from the theme of this blog but what the heck. While ago another driver reversed into my car and it has taken till now to sort out my car for repairs. This morning the chappie from the bodyshop turned up with my courtesy car. As a rule they normally are something small and cheap but not this one. I was given a  Lexus IS220d, been informed that it is highly unlikely that I'll get my car back before Christmas, oh bother I say. I'm sure I'll just have to put up with driving the Lexus for a while.


Slightly different scenario today, as it was supposed to be my day off I somehow managed to volunteer to do an extra days work. Came in today at 04:40 and was informed that there isn't anything to do, oh great another 8 hours of sitting around and being bored. Luckily when talking to the shunter he said that there might be something that I can do. Had to go and take a double decker trailer to thurock to the workshop and bring back another one that was fixed. Interesting as the double deckers have small wheels and the stability is something to be desired when empty.
Collected the other one and being in a hurry to get back I went the wrong way, ended up on the QE2 bridge and had to be shepherded back through the tunnel as I didn't have any cash to pay the toll. It was kind of funny to be escorted back to the other side of the tunnel, first time ever through the tunnel in a 16ft 2in high lorry then I had the long drive back down the way I came. The roadworks between Junction 28 & 27 are a pain in the backside, about time they were finished but what the hell they'll always spring up somewhere else


The usual place this week, Langley each morning and then with luck home by 22:30.

This duty seems to have been bought in for Christmas and not scoped out correctly. Each day I take an Artic & trailer which is empty to Mount Royal and then I am tasked to do specific 2 runs to United Airlines. One run in the morning and the other late in the afternoon. Most days there seems to be little to take down in the morning so I’ve been tasked a number of times to put the lorry on a bay and await further instructions.

Few times they didn't arrive till about 16:30 in the afternoon so a whole day was spent either sitting in the cab or in the canteen. Not that I mind this but it can be a bit boring just waiting there.

The handling agents moan when I arrive late which has happened a number of times as the mail wasn't ready and loaded in time, what can i do in this case apart from saying sorry.

Few times this week I managed to do some seriously long hours and when the days off come along all I can say is that they arrive just in time.