Archive for category: CDL

Touring is like childbirth

For those of you not familiar with my former lifestyle, I married a man-who at 19-had a band that was signed and touring.


He met me at the ripe old age of 22, threw me over his shoulder and we kept going.


For the first 5 or so years of our marriage, we criss-crossed the U.S., while he bounced around the stage playing bass guitar and singing, I watched from the side-so proud of my husband.


Touring with his band quickly morphed into driving our friend’s tour buses during our downtime, which then morphed into a career for the both of us.
We were able to spend every waking minute with each other and make decent money-only working 4 months out of the year.

And, we got to stay in really cool hotels-for free.


I mean, really cool hotels-like ones with complimentary white robes and house shoes, Starbucks in the lobby and manager’s receptions.


And hotels where Frank Sinatra, Audrey Hepburn and Carey Grant used to stay.


We saw more of the U.S. than I ever thought possible in one lifetime, let alone a couple of years.


Often, in just a few days’ time, we would go from laid back towns with southern sandy beaches…


…to fall weather and the craziness of New York.


We were invited to a real Louisiana crab boil, complete with Zydeco music.


And we ate at historic restaurants with tortillas the size of a spare tire. (Which subsequently, gives you a spare tire.)


We’ve been fortunate enough to experience things in a weekend-all paid for-that most people save up years to do.

And I got to do this all with my best friend at my side.


However, for all of the perks, a touring lifestyle can be unpredictable.

Would the bus break down today, and if so, how much money will we loose?
Can we make it through this traffic/construction/snowstorm and get to the show on time?
Will the other bands on tour like us?
Will we get to eat today, and if so, is it pizza again?
Am I going to get to sleep in a bed tonight/this afternoon?
Will I drive Biceps crazy singing, “Baby went to Amsterdam, She put a little money into travelin’, now it’s so slow, so slow…” too many times when traffic slows down?
Will we crash and die?
Am I going to encounter any other normal human besides Biceps today? (Probably not.)


But, now that we’re away from touring and into a normal routine of life-getting up at the same time, packing Bicep’s lunches, ironing his “Blues”, being at church every Sunday, cooking dinner every night-I miss the unpredictability of the touring lifestyle.

I miss the sunrises every morning, making breakfast sandwiches on the bus, and having someone else wash my towels and my sheets.

I miss the whirring sound of the bus generator, the early morning coffee time and seeing towns empty out after a huge show.

But, then I think about the slumber party stomach from lack of sleep, blinding snowstorms that scare the crap out of me as I’m driving through New York, and the loneliness of having a flipped schedule from other “day dwellers”.

It’s so easy to forget all the bad stuff, the painful stuff-only bringing to mind all the good stuff. I think touring is a bit like childbirth for me.

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What the heck is a CDL?

You see a driver’s license that looks different from yours.
So, you ask “What’s up with your license?”
They reply, “I have a CDL.”
So, what is that?

I have a Class B CDL with a Passenger (P) endorsement. There are three different classes a professional driver can have:  Class A, B or C. Without getting too technical, I’ll explain each of the classes with a link to fun elementary-type pictures. Because that’s how I learn best.

Class A: A combo of vehicles that weighs over 26,001 pounds either all at once or with something in tow. AND, what you’re towing has to weigh more than 10,000. Confused? This picture might help.

Class B: A single vehicle that weighs over 26,001 pounds. If you are towing something, it has to weigh less than 10,000. This is what I drive. A rectangle with wheels.

Class C: A vehicle that doesn’t fit into the first two classes, but carries a lot of peeps. Like a limo or a trolley. Below is supposed to be a limo. It’s the best I could do. Sorry.

That’s about it. There are a few other things, like if you’re transporting bombs or toxic stuff, you need to have another endorsement. But, I won’t get into the nitty gritty.   It’s boring, but it’s my life.

(Name that movie quote and you’ll get a star.)

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