We recently wrapped up a two-week trip to Portland, Oregon, and Little Rock, Arkansas, that included some great conversations with truck drivers, truck manufacturers, and truck company executives. We’ll talk more about those interviews in the coming weeks because you can’t really understand the importance of our interstate highways until you talk with the folks who live and breathe those roads and bridges every day. As usually happens when we go out on one of these adventures, the main thing we learned is that we have a lot more to learn.
Also, as usually happens, I came back all fired up. Excited about all the technology being developed to make trucks more fuel efficient and safer. Frustrated that the cost of all that great technology was going to be difficult for the average owner-operator to purchase. Impressed by how dedicated most truck professionals are to proper training. Disappointed to learn that there are still too many people out there cutting corners. Pleased to see cars sharing the roads with bicycles; light rail rounding a curve past big rigs; trains chugging under pedestrian bridges. And, frankly, pissed off at distracted drivers, the disregard for posted safety signs, and flat-out rudeness on the part of people whizzing past our camera and lighting equipment-filled van.
Usually, reading a good book can calm my over-stimulated nerves, but the book on my nightstand right now is “Move: Putting America’s Infrastructure Back in the Lead” by Rosabeth Moss Kanter. So many ideas. So many challenges. So many possibilities! Surfing the internet doesn’t help much either. Have you seen this? Or this? How about this?!
Like I said, fired up. But a documentary is a marathon, not a sprint, and we’ve got miles to go. So, I take a take a few deep breaths and keep reading, keep questioning, and keep learning. At the same time, I want to hang onto some of that fire. It’s the feeling all of us at BPTS are hoping to pass along to you once this documentary is finished. We’re hoping you’ll get riled up enough to make a phone call, write a letter, send an email, or even show up at a city council meeting to demand that the way we deliver our food, gasoline, medical supplies – everything we need every day – must be a priority. Rattle a few cages. Make a little noise. Shake things up!
Maybe I need a few more deep breaths…