First Trip Pulling The New Trailer

First Trip Pulling The New Trailer
First trip with the new trailer By John
Everyone has that first trip; the trailer feels strange, youre not used to how it pulls, the mirrors and blind spots have got you on edge. So what I do is tell everyone to be quiet; I need to concentrate on driving. We hadnt even cleared the driveway when I had to turn left to avoid the neighbors lawn; and then I heard and felt a loud scraping sound. I could see everything on the drivers side, but nothing on the passenger side. Our new thirty five foot trailer has a pretty long rear overhang; when you turn one way the rear end swings the other way before obediently following. Be quiet, something is wrong I said as I stopped the car in the middle of our dead end road, still in front of our house. Its a long embarrassing walk with the neighbors watching as I inspect the rig. Sure enough the big boulder I placed to mark the edge of our driveway had tangled with the trailers flimsy bumper. The boulder appeared to have acquired more character, but the bumper looked like someone had taken a tire iron to the end of it, plus the scratched and gouged plastic cap was lying in the street. I looked inside the bumper and saw that the sewer hose was still intact; thank goodness a disaster averted. I kicked the cap back in place and headed for the drivers seat again. Its only two hundred feet to the stop sign, and my next major turning test. I dont know why but I spend a lot of time looking in the mirrors to make sure the trailer is following me, but this allows me to wander since Im not really watching where Im steering while starring at the mirrors. And of course since I am looking in the mirrors I see right away when the trailer leaves the lane, which causes me to look out the front window to see what the problem is. And then the cycle repeats. It looks like we forgot to extend the mirrors I tell Linda; can you open your window and shove it out as far as it will go, try tapping it, bang it with your fist. Im sorry I didnt think it would hurt you; it looks like its out now, thanks. I swat my side out with a single smack. Were about two blocks from home, time to adjust the radio, and check all the gauges. Oops almost forgot to look in the mirrors. Oh crap, I can see one of the storage compartment doors is catching the wind; I knew I should be looking in the mirrors more often. I need to pull over and latch the door. The first place we come to Ill pull in and lock up. Seven Eleven, I cant pull in; Ill never get out again. Thriftway is next, no good, it looks like we will high ground, maybe I should have hooked the load leveler hitch on the fifth link instead of the fourth; what did the salesman say leave four hanging unless it creaks on corners Traffic is piling up behind us; they want me to go faster but I cant, the wind is tweaking the door. Ill just pull over on the shoulder, it looks wide enough. Were just clear of the white line when I come to a stop, the line of cars are streaming by, one honks a nice hello, another driver waves; no, hes not waving after all. He looks familiar. I have to wait for all the cars to go by, I cant risk opening the door and not being able to make it to the trailer, turn the latch and get back to safety. Finally I get my chance; Im done in seconds, and then decide I need to check the two storage doors on the other side. Instead of walking around the back of the trailer I try to step over the hitch and stumble, causing me to run into the ditch. Im ok I have to walk in the ditch anyway because there wasnt enough room where I pulled over. Both doors were latched; I didnt need to climb in the bushes. Back in the car Linda says, is that blood on your foot? Im waiting for a break in traffic so I can pull back on the road, were still getting a honk or two; apparently everyone wants to wish us a nice trip. As we get going again I think, its not too late to turn back; we are only one and half miles from home. May 2010

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