By: Saige Anderson
Before driving a semi, I was with Amtrak as a chef on a moving train. I lived in Chicago, but when we traveled to Seattle, I thought it was beautiful. So, I moved out there and used my Prius to haul a trailer. I wanted to save gas.”
“Later I was told the car was not designed for that.”
As Larry shared his stories with me all I could think was, “He is one big myth buster!” He’s lived in Pennsylvania, St. Martin, Delaware, Illinois, Washington, and Texas. And he’s traveled the world as a chef, baker, electrician, bus driver, and now a truck driver.
Here are the myths he busted.
Myth #1 Busted: A Prius Can Pull a Trailer Across the United States
It turns out Larry is awfully familiar with travel and moving for work. He used his Prius to pull a trailer across the United States, not once, not twice, but multiple times! Chicago to Seattle. Seattle to Philadelphia. His Prius lasted 16 years. Never had I heard a Prius was capable of pulling a trailer.
In my mind, Larry busted a myth. He loved the beautiful scenery. And his Prius hauling days taught him how to trip plan. One thing led to another, and Larry decided he wanted to become a truck driver.
Myth #2 Busted: Moving Half the Width of the United States in 30 Days is Possible
The first time I spoke to Larry, I was in recruiting, and he was living in San Antonio, Texas. Sadly, it was not a hiring area for Nussbaum.
But Larry did his research on us, and he thought we were special. So, as we kept talking, he asked, “If Texas won’t work, where is your greatest need for drivers?” I thought to myself, “1,682 miles away from you, Larry, in Maryland!” In my mind, the distance between Texas and Maryland was more like 300,000 miles. As a recruiter, the last thing I wanted to do was offer someone a job that would require them to leave their home, even if it was to serve our greatest need. The prospect of this made me very uneasy. It did not feel like an even trade.
Yet. Little did I know, Larry was different.
In about 30 days, Larry packed up his belongings and found a new home in Delaware. My unease vanished as I learned he grew up in Philadelphia and had family nearby (*sigh* – the things we wish people would tell us at the beginning of a conversation).
Myth #3 Busted: Humility is a Beautiful Characteristic
I asked Larry what encouragement or advice he had regarding truck driving. His answer was the final myth busted. It was a simple reminder that humility is a beautiful characteristic. Humility is admitting you are struggling or having a really challenging time with something. But you are trying to do better. As Larry and I talked, his coach Bobby Joy sat on the couch and patiently waited to resume helping Larry improve his backing skills. Larry says he keeps driving because he wants to be better than before. He is learning to get out and look. All in all, Larry says the most important thing to him is the name he is driving for.
I’m grateful Larry made the trip to Delaware and is now a Nussbaum driver. He swapped in his Prius for an 80-foot-long Freightliner Cascadia and trailer and hasn’t looked back. Oh, the stories you find when you take the time to listen!