Let me tell you about our first day at camp. We got up at 5:30 AM, had a shower, and went for breakfast. I asked Chin if Don was up, or maybe he just volunteered the info; either way, Don had already fired up his truck. We finished our meal, I had cottage cheese and pineapple, and Chin had some other concoction, and headed over to the safety meeting that the camp manager had told us about when we checked in. When I say “we checked in”, I mean Chin, Don, and I. Who the fuck is Don, you ask? Well, let me enlighten you. Don is the third driver that was sent up with us to this job. We had to wait for hours, because he just took his sweet time, and dawdled his lanky ass up the highway until he met up with us. We were told to wait for him, because he wouldn’t be able to find his way into the camp by himself. (Turns out I couldn’t either, thanks Aaron.) We waited in Fort Nelson for an hour and a half before Don showed up, but that doesn’t include the stopping along the highway to try and fix windshield washers and shit. Anyhow, after all this buggering around, we get to the camp, and the girl tells us there is a safety meeting in the morning at 7 AM in the conference room, and we can find out what we’re doing then. Now you’re caught up on the story.

So Chin and I go to the safety meeting at the given time, and Don isn’t there. I waited until after the meeting and went to find Don; he was laying on his bed, reading a magazine. I asked whether he was planning on going to work, and he said no one told him anything. I told him that the girl had told all three of us about the safety meeting, the night before. He got fairly agitated and stood up and said that I didn’t tell him anything, and he was sick of this, and he started grabbing his bags; all the while mumbling about no one talking to him. I asked if he wouldn’t have thought to come and find someone, to see about going to work, seeing as we had just driven there to start a camp job, and he said “I don’t have to take this shit, Chris. I’m outta here, see ya, bud.” I then went out to the kitchen to keep myself from exploding. (I’m a little edgy since abandoning my beautiful family, you see.) After I had counted to ten, I started back there, and met him coming down the hall with his bags. “So you’re really leaving?” I asked him. He just stared ahead and pushed on past. I thought that I had better call Billy, so I did, and he was a little shy of impressed. I can’t go into detail, because I don’t incriminate my pals, but there were a few expletives said aloud. He told me to tell Don to call him, so I chased him out to the lay down yard where we park our trucks, and he was just throwing his gear in. I told him to call Bill, and he gave a bunch of excuses; said that this wasn’t the place for him and that if he could find his way out, he was heading for town. I wrote him out a map, and sent him up into the Territories. Nah, I wish. I just went back to where Chinster was patiently waiting. I then told the supervisor that our other driver had just fucked off, and told him the story. He was quite adamant that we didn’t need someone like that around here, and Chin and I agreed.

We then went to the Imperial orientation, and Don showed up there. I asked him if he had spoken to Billy or Barry, and he said he hadn’t talked to anyone. I told him that he was run off, and he said “Fine.”, and left. We then enjoyed about 5 hours of orientations, and I dozed off… twice. I was pretty impressed with the Chin Dog today. He didn’t once get mouthy with anyone, and he asked a lot of questions. I could actually picture him making a career out of that type of thing. I figured before we left that I was okay to put my neck out to get him hired on, and I thought he was a good employee before, but I really think he’s going to do well here. He wants to learn, is eager, but not rammy, and has a good head on his shoulders; any of these companies would love to have a guy like that on their roster. I can honestly say that so far, I’m glad he came out with me, and I hope that this proves to be a worthwhile experience for him.

Oh yeah, I almost started to cry when the poem, “I could have saved a life today” came on with a slideshow, and a sad song playing. When it talked about the kids, and there were pictures of distraught wives and children, and all that sad shit. I thought of my girls back home, and of how sad they’d be if I got killed at work. I had to look away and say something about hunting to hide my sadness. For those of you that don’t know it, I’ll put it here.

I could have saved a life today

I could have saved a life today
but chose to look the other way.

It wasn’t that I didn’t care.
I had the time, and I was there
but I didn’t want to seem a fool
and argue over safety rules.

I knew he’d done the job before.
if I called it wrong, he might get sore.
The chances didn’t seem that bad.
(I’ve done the same. He knew I had.)

So I shook my head and walked on by.
He knew the risks as well as I.
He took the chance, I closed my eye
and with that act I let him die.

I could have saved a life that day
but chose to look the other way.

Now every time I see his wife
I know I should have saved his life.
I see his kids and feel so sad.
They cry at night. They’ve lost their Dad.

That guilt is something I must bear
but isn’t something you need share.
If you see a risk that others take,
that puts their health or life at stake ..

… The question asked, or things you say
could help them live another day.
If YOU see a risk and walk away,
then hope YOU never have to say

I could have saved a life today
but chose to look the other way.


Wild horses couldn't drag me away, from you, do-do-do, do-doodleoodle-do,

7 thoughts on “Don

    • I’m glad too, but I’m glad that Chin got to see that Ontario and Quebec don’t have a monopoly on asshole truckers. I miss you so bad, baby.

  1. Shit sticks like Don aren’t worth the effort; a cancer on moral, good riddance to that tumor. Chin is a great guy to work with! Smart fucker that guy… When it gets dull, he’ll make it fun. Have a blast guys! Drive safe, wear a condom.

    Scotty P

  2. Stay safe up there Birdman and Chin. Remember, it is always a good idea to get to know the medic. She might get to give you mouth to mouth one day.

    If it’s a man-aid, remember no tongue. Unless he likes it that way.

  3. Pingback: An open letter to Imperial Oil Resources » Change The Topic

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