She’s licensed to carry out marriages and he’s an skilled chef. They love the liberty of driving on open highways, hauling freight for a residing.
Marylynn Downham and Brian Keyes have been working for Challenger since 2016, initially as group drivers and now driving separate large rigs.
The couple is fast to level out that they obtained alongside nice whereas driving as a group, however their well being took a beating. Keyes mentioned group driving is a problem attributable to tight schedules and also you barely get time to organize and eat wholesome meals. Discovering time to train can also be troublesome. With the ability to get correct sleep in a transferring truck was additionally an issue.
In two-and-a-half years, Keyes piled on 50 kilos and Downham gained 25 kilos.
The couple determined it was time to wrest again their well being. They mentioned goodbye to group driving and started working individually.
They purchased and put in 1.1 cubic meter freezers of their vans. “We will make meals at residence and freeze them and carry them. It made an enormous distinction to our food plan,” Keyes, the previous chef, mentioned.
The couple took a yr to shed the burden they gained and has managed to maintain it off.
Downham mentioned drivers shouldn’t have to purchase restaurant meals and make themselves so sick that they will’t get pleasure from their retirement. Their vans are geared up with air fryers, espresso makers, microwaves, and a freezer. “There’s a more healthy technique to be a truck driver,” she mentioned. “Get out of the truck and stroll, it’s essential.”
“I’ve obtained my favourite locations I prefer to cease at, I can stroll and run.”
Brian Keyes, driver
Keyes mentioned he sees lots of people pull up of their vans and never get out. They simply shut the curtains and fall asleep. “I’ve obtained my favourite locations I prefer to cease at, I can stroll and run,” he mentioned.
Downham and Keyes met later in life. She labored in customer support and made her approach as much as administration. Keyes labored as a chef for nearly 30 years. He additionally drove tractors and shuttle buses prior to now.
After managing a few motels collectively, the couple determined to enter the trucking trade and obtained their Class A licences.
They mentioned Challenger makes positive to maintain them collectively and most instances they run as a two-truck convoy. The go in the identical course, head to completely different locations to drop and decide up masses, and head again collectively.
“If we’re going in numerous instructions, we all the time cross one another. We speak, saying ‘we’ll cease right here, or I’ll meet you there.’ And we spend time collectively,” Downham mentioned.
“I obtained a lady in each port. She all the time reveals up in an enormous white truck,” Keyes replied shortly with an enormous grin.
Downham mentioned she has a smile on her face when she drives and nonetheless can’t consider she is driving an enormous rig. She loves being her personal boss and getting paid to see the sights.
Keyes finds the work stress-free. He solely has to keep up a schedule, get to locations on time and handle the truck.
Daughter’s wedding ceremony
Later this month, Downham is wanting ahead to marrying her daughter and her girlfriend who’ve been collectively for the previous 11 years. Within the tv sequence, Schitt’s Creek, Moira marries her son and his associate. Downham’s daughter requested if she would do the identical and he or she mentioned sure.
She has acquired a certificates and letter of excellent standing and is prepared for her first ceremony.
The couple has purchased a house in Pink Deer, Alta., and are working onerous to repay the mortgage. They plan to drive for a bit longer after that.
Downham hopes to have extra weddings to officiate sooner or later. “That’s my retirement plan once I cease driving,” she mentioned.