Night Hauler

"I got a sense of purpose when I hit the turnpike at one thirty. My shift starts at two. The hours between two and three get spent hauling goods out from the warehouse. Between three and five I circle out to all the one stops, the stop n shops, and 7-elevens in the area. I bring 'em the usual: danish, coffee, foodstuff for the morning, all that.

"After round one I have to get back to the warehouse for another go, this time for the Dunkin Donuts chains. There's a fucking ridiculous number of Dunkin Donuts down over near Revere and Chelsea. Do you know how many there are? There's about fifty.

"It's still dark most of that time. It's a bit tough in winter but hey, it's winter. Nothing I can do about it. I'm almost the only guy out there. I love seeing the blinking lights on the planes coming and going from the road. I get going for that smell of new coffee in the stop n shops.

"The way I see it, without me and the other guys out doing it, there is no day. You know what I mean? There's no morning without the stuff I haul around. There's no morning without the whoosh and squeaking of the hydraulics, and the beep of the backup alarm.

"My dog Max is just chilling through all this while I'm hauling and loading and hauling and loading. Yeah, he comes with me every morning. He likes being out. He doesn't bother anyone.

"I take him with me. This is a part time gig, so it's over by seven. I get my coffee - an extra large with four sugars and extra cream, and a pastry and we head out to Revere beach and turn up the radio real loud. Usually it's real grey, grey just everywhere, in the water and the concrete and the cars, it's just grey all over the place, and the smell of diesel fuel, and there's a lot of mist running by. We sit on my car hood and Max eats half my pastry and I watch the water for an hour or so.  That's the favorite part of my day, you know. I just watch the water and appreciate where I am.

"I also get to see the planes taking off and landing. I hear that traffic noise behind me telling me the world finally got its ass up, thanks to me.

"The other week I got off a bit early and Max and me got to the beach before the sun came up. That was special. My favorite tune came up right at that point where the night goes to day. The light was real pretty. A ton of colors came up at once and hit a row of real nice homes up past the road. All that, and my song was on.

"I have no problem with what I do. This will sound weird, but whatever. From the time my day starts til I get back up into the car after finishing my coffee, it's like Church. It's every day service. It's better than the one I had growing up. Way better. They always used to talk to me about how the congregation is family and all that, but I really feel like my family is all the things i come across when I'm hauling, and the time I spend after, just thinking about it all. As long as I have that around, there is nothing I need."


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