Back in 1999, when Bob got into his first Freightliner as a driver for a large fleet, we made the truck into our retreat and tiny home. The upper bunk became my sanctuary. I was able to store my crafts to the sides of the top bunk, and I would sit in the middle, being able to craft away while the truck was stopped. The lower bed was made to look like a daybed with the bedspread and pillows with pillow shams on them against the back wall. The company allowed us to remove a bottom cabinet, and Bob put in a dorm size refrigerator. I was able to cook many of our evening meals, and we always had something for our lunches stored in the truck. In this sleeper, I learned about little coffee bags that resembled tea bags. I would warm my water up in the microwave and put my coffee bag in the cup and wallah I had coffee. The sleeper always looked cozy and comfortable, even if the twin bed was a little small for two people and a Cocker Spaniel. We made it work, though.
Then we bought our first Freightliner truck with a 96” custom sleeper, and it seemed huge. We had a small sink, and a chair bolted to the floor beside the bed. The best part was an RV size refrigerator. The small sink was perfect to set a crockpot in or a rice cooker to cook just about any meal Bob and I wanted. I then used the rice cooker to heat water and wash my dishes. Now, I had the area to have a real coffee pot. We spent eight years in this truck learning to become team drivers, to become successful expediters as well as business owners.
Next, we had two Freightliner Cascadias, one right after the other with Bolt Custom 100” Sleepers. The truck and sleeper were genuinely fantastic. The upgrade from a Freightliner M2 to a Cascadia, and to gain 4” in the sleeper, made a huge difference in our living experience while on the road. The sleeper featured a murphy style bed, and while the bed was up, we finally had a table and bench seats. The luxury of being able to work at a table, and having a place to sit, and eat, and not having to sit on the bed was awesome. This sleeper had a microwave/convection oven, and nothing was beyond my reach in my culinary pursuits. How could it get better than this?
Our operation over the years has become specialized and created some hardships. Once we started looking for our fourth truck, we decided it was time to step up our game and get a custom sleeper. It was a given that we would buy a Freightliner Cascadia as the Freightliner fit right into our business plan. We went with ARI Legacy Sleepers and purchased a 120” custom sleeper with a shower. This process was like building a house, and a lot of decisions were made over the phone as we could not be there in person. I just thought 4” was huge when we went into the Bolt sleeper; now, with 20 more inches, it was like we moved into a mansion.
With everything that is going on in our world today, it is easy to practice social distancing when we have all of this comfort. Each of our “tiny homes” for the past 20 years has been special and was very comfortable when we would stop for the night. We have always spent months on the road and made it work for us. Our current truck has almost all of the luxuries of home. Once we are done driving for the day, we step away from our workspace with a great view and can relax in comfort. We have the best of both worlds, a great truck to drive, and a comfortable sleeper to live in while on the road.
Each one of our Freightliners has been comfortable, and we have made the sleeper into our personal tiny home.