The weekend passed
The real world became
A string of glimpses
As my driving passion gripped
Punctuated by cups of tea
An occasional meal
Breaking the flow

Twenty cities discovered
That was the target
Personal work done
Now I drive at slower pace
Delivering for our community
Real life allowed to reassert
Slowly once more...

Martin Addison – 13/04/2021

After completion of my personal target in the SCS Software #CruisingIberia community event in Euro Truck Simulator 2.

That sounds like the sort of thing that nefarious agencies and corporations do doesn’t it? And we all know that they do ๐Ÿ˜ฆ This, however, is much less sinister ๐Ÿ™‚

A couple of days back I shared some of my recent Farming Simulator activity on Twitter – some of these images may become part of my future post from my Boundary and Rosland Farm series, so I won’t share the initial media at this time.

I’ve mentioned before the great friendly community on Twitter centred around the Truck Simulator games that I am lucky enough to be part of ๐Ÿ™‚ As in any good community, there is always banter, so my post of recent farming activity elicited the following response…

“If I had a chance to get you here (by your will, of course, I’m not a maniac) I would give you the IMT 533 and I’ll let you plow my land and see how you handle it ๐Ÿ˜‰ “

Firstly – I should make clear that my firend is not a native English speaker, hence the odd choice of words. This should really be read like an invitation to holiday at his place ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s also a sort of laying down of a gauntlet – a challenge if you will ๐Ÿ™‚

I asked (using my recently gained knowledge of ploughing from my research) – “Is the plough set up for in-furrow or on-land? ๐Ÿ˜‰ “

There was a hiatus at that point and I’m guessing my young friend either had to go and check with his Father or he might have just been busy in their fields – They’re clearing an area of grass you see. I should add at this point that all of this is visible to the rest of our followers, so not a private conversation, and several are marking our chat with likes ๐Ÿ˜‰

He finally tells me it’s “On-land. We just need a little chunk done for healthy growth of our trees. We are currently mowing it.”

A while later he posts – “Martin will get this chunk done in March next year but for now we are preparing it for winter.” – with a photo of him strimming an area of grass as part of the work.

But while he’s been busy on the family farm, I’ve been busy tracking down an IMT 533 tractor mod for Farming Simulator 19 ๐Ÿ™‚ As far as I can tell, this tractor is a Massey Ferguson 35 manufactured under licence. I also sorted out an IMT plough and a map set in Eastern Europe, not too far from my friend’s homeland so that I could at least catch the flavour. I posted back to him, “Thought I’d better get some practice in… ๐Ÿ˜‰ ” with these images from Farming Simulator…

And I got the great response… “You just made my day!” with appropriate emojis ๐Ÿ™‚

Social Media may be one of the evils of our modern world but it can also be a bridge-builder between people of different ages, cultures and religions. We really shouldn’t let governments, or corporations, own and control it. Neither should we allow the haters to guide our behaviour – there’s a lot of opportunity for friendships to be forged on social media and just maybe that can lead to a better world ๐Ÿ™‚

It’s been a long time since I posted a Digest. Initially it was because I was getting to grips with the changes in The Hunter Call of the Wild and I put most of my trucking on hold in that period. Then, back on 17th February I decided to do one of the Steam Achievements that had caught my eye in Euro Truck – Orient Express. This became available with the ‘Road to the Black Sea’ map dlc. It’s a simple enough achievement provided the jobs fall for you. Deliver loads along the route of the famous VSOE train – Paris-Strasbourg; Strasbourg-Munich; Munich-Vienna; Vienna-Budapest; Budapest-Bucharest; Bucharest-Istanbul. Having positioned to Paris I set out on the journey on Feb 18th in my DAF XF……it took me 3 irl days with a small hiatus in Vienna when I couldn’t get a job going on to Budapest but on 20th we finally rolled into Istanbul to claim the achievement…

One thing leads to another and being part of the vibrant virtual trucker community tends to result in a snowballing of things as we spur each other on. One of my friends who was struggling with that same achievement due to jobs not falling for him, tweeted that he’d completed all the achievements in American Truck. That, of course, was a reminder to me that I’d fallen behind on those during the past year of so as I concentrated on the community events. So I decided it was time to get all the outstanding achievements in that game completed too. One of the outstanding ones required visiting tourist sites in Oregon, so off we went to Crater lake……and to Thor’s Well – actually Cook’s Chasm……along with Yaquina Head Lighthouse and Crooked River Gorge. In Washington a similar sightseeing achievement required a visit to Mount St Helens……and the Grand Coulee Dam……seen during a visit for another achievement – ‘Go Big or Go Home’ – shifting oversize loads on all the routes for that type of load. Here we are completing one of those jobs – a Turnkey House, Oxnard-Barstow…

Other achievements included visits to all Oregon’s forestry sites, and shifting every type of forest machinery as well as visiting a lumber site outside Bellingham in Washington. Here we are coming back down the track from that one with a Knuckleboom Loader in tow….

The jobs required for two achievements just wouldn’t fall for me. One required me to deliver a boat to one of the Washington shipyards. In the end I had to take a ‘Hire job’ and wound up driving this ‘Varicose’ blue Mack R from Holbrook to Port Angeles……With no wing mirrors, it was a pain and I was glad to get back in our very own Ol’Dawg afterwards…. That was all the achievements done except one which is still outstanding. Deliver 5 Frac Tanks to drilling sites in Utah. I can’t seem to get any of these to drop in my own trucks so again I’m having to take Hire Jobs between doing normal runs to likely origin locations. Yesterday I took a hire from Ely to Moab in this rather nice Freightliner Argosy……an impressive piece of kit – though I think 600HP was overkill for an 8200lb load ๐Ÿ˜‰ I have three more of those deliveries to make after which I shall be fully up to date in ATS – 22 achievements completed in around 6 weeks. Hopefully that explains the hiatus between Digest posts. I will now be turning my attention to the many outstanding achievements in Euro truck – it’s a good way to keep busy in a time of lockdown!

Stay Safe and Well everyone – Keep the Shiny Side Up!!!