Did something new today. I loaded the bales of shredded paper headed to the mill for repulping onto a tractor trailer. We send out a load like this about every week. I've always worked hard to schedule these "live loads" for sometime when a talented forklift driver is in town. Today I failed in scheduling....
Most of the guys who load the trucks can do it in about 45 minutes. I took a little over an hour and half. 31 bales of paper, 28 of which are double stacked, go onto a truck. Most of the stacks of bales in the warehouse are stacked 3 high. So sometimes I had to not only grab a pair of 1000+ pound bales of paper, sometimes I had to create my own stacks.
Then the Jenga-like trick is to get them onto the truck and yank the folklift out from under a pair. Kind of like the trick with the tablecloth and the wineglasses. Except it is immensely more difficult to set back up than wineglasses. Sometimes I had to try the "jerk" part about 5 times before the stack would be left and then I got to raise up the forks and poke the stack against the previous ones. That was probably my favorite part. Only once did I lose a stack. And I am here to tell you that 2000 pounds falling onto the floor of a trailer make a thunderous racket.
So then I had two bales lying on their sides...what the heck do I do with that? I just lifted one onto the other, poked them in line with their fellows, and backed out to get the next set. (I did call one of the experienced loaders and he said that was okay...I guess if I get a call from the mill tomorrow complaining, I'll have to own up to doing it).
I was slow. It was tedious. It was nerve-wracking...especially lifting two off a stack of three, putting the top bale above my head. But you know what? I did it. And although I know it isn't a feat worthy of a parade...I still want one.
Hamster un-crushed by falling tonnage.
I think that makes this a good day.