It Shouldn’t Happen to a Van Driver… But it Does! Part VI


One of the infuriating things about this job (of which there aren’t many to be fair) is the size of the drops. Or should I say, lack of size. It seems to be a constant source of amusement to those we deliver to and embarrassment for me. Well, yes and no. Frustration more than embarrassment I suppose. The clients order a bundle of stuff and it seems to them we deliver it in dribs and drabs. With the cost of fuel and all that it would make sense to hold the order until we can deliver the lot. Particularly when my run gets spread out over a wide geographical area. But when you turn up at building-site with only a knife they could’ve bought at the hardware shop next-door, what can one say? What can one do?! They think it’s stupid… I’m forced to agree after a forced-march, long drive up from Folkestone to Ramsgate. Take Hell-fire Corner out of my run and you take a good 30-miles off. If I do the Island (Sheppy) and Hell-fire Corner on the same day as Ashford and Folkestone and you’re talking over 170 miles in a day. Most of the time I’m clocking up 140-150+ miles. So, when I’m carrying a fist-full of bags with one or two items in that could have gone by post, you can understand I might just get a little fed up. The classic was the site in Ashford. The Site Agent ordered a mop and bucket (with the attachment that means you can squeeze some of the water out). First I delivered the mop handle, then the the bucket. I faced a stream of derision from the Site Agent every time I turned up without the mop-head. He had a point: without the mop-head the whole lot was a bit useless. Well, after weeks of this I finally had the offending mop-head on my van… only to find, when arrived at the site, that said Site Agent and building contractors had finished and packed the site up.

Oh, well…

Sometimes I get to deliver lots of broom handles. What fun! This is because no-one appears to have heard of sticky tape. A strip of that stuff at each end of a bunch of loose broom handles would turn them into a stout, solid staff. But no. They’re just chucked in the back. I suppose I should take responsibility since I’m the one chucking everything into the back of the van… Anyway, while I’m drive along I get serenaded by a series of random clunks and clashes. It sounds like something between a bar room brawl in a pool hall and a lovers’ tiff amid Morris Dancers. There’s nothing dangerous or damaging about them, they just sound bad. Okay… I’ll quit moaning: I’ll tape ‘em up myself in future!


About malekmontag

I am a writer and a wage-slave, and proud father of George Giraffe. I live in the UK, but I exist everywhere. My first stories were published this year (2016) in Short Stories and Tall Tales (Atla Publishing). Follow me on Twitter @Malek_Montag15. My Work is also available on
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