“Around 2006 or so, I was driving flatbed, picked up a load of construction material (drywall, roofing, don’t remember but it was prepackaged in boxes and I remember having to use strap protectors on the load) in rural Tennessee. A tarp was required, so I strapped everything down, put the tarp over the load, and left the shipper. About five miles down the road, in the middle of nowhere woods on a two-lane road, I noticed my tarp flapping in the wind. I found a wide shoulder and pulled over to fix it. I realized I just did a bad job tarping this load and decided to re-do it on the side of the road. I undid all the bungee straps, dragged the tarps off, rolled them back up, climbed up on the load and started unrolling the tarps again, and I saw a guy walking down the same side of the road I’m on, coming towards my truck.
I didn’t think anything about it other than to keep an eye on him because I was in the middle of nowhere, and continued what I was doing. About the time, I had tarps set in place and was climbing down to start hooking the bungee straps back on, and this dude was getting close enough I was paying more attention to him than I was to tarping my load. I grabbed my winch bar and set it on the trailer where I was working just in case (it’s an eight-pound solid metal bar about 4 feet long tapered to a blunt point on one and hollow on the other, used for tightening straps and chains, etc).
The guy gets to me and the first thing I noticed was his hair. It’s like a mullet, but it’s really patchy. Like he tried to cut his own hair and had a seizure in the process and said forget it, ‘good enough to party.’ The next thing I noticed were his eyes, which I can only describe as ‘off.’ Like they were clear, I didn’t think he was messed up or high or anything, but it also gave me the distinct impression the elevator didn’t go all the way up. His clothes were dirty and not well maintained, with dirty white tennis shoes, because I remember he didn’t have laces on one shoe and the tongue was noticeably out of place.
He stopped by me, waited until I acknowledge him, and just said, ‘I’ve got a long walk.’ I’m like yeah man, you do, we’re in the middle of nowhere, making it clear there’s no ride to be had here. He nodded, startsed walking by me continuing on his way, stopped at about the driver door on my truck and turned around, comes back to me, and repeated himself. ‘I’ve got a long walk.’ At this point, I explained I can’t give him a ride, insurance, and all that. I apologized for not being able to help him out, and he seemed to accept this, so he turned around, and left.
I waited for him to get a little ways away from my truck and started working on finishing the tarp job. I still kept an eye on him and he’s moving away from me. As I’m putting on the last of the bungee straps, I looked over to check where he’s at and he’s turned around heading back towards me, now about 100 yards in front of my truck and coming back my way. It looks like he’s talking on a cell phone, had his hand up to his face, and I can barely make out his mouth moving, his other hand waving like he’s having a conversation with someone.
I finished with the straps, grabbed my winch bar, and was climbing into my truck as he was about 10 yards away now. As soon as I’m in the cab, I locked the doors, and set the winch bar on the passenger seat just in case. I looked at the guy and realized he’s not talking on a phone, he’s talking to his hand. Now I’m nervous because he doesn’t look like he’s having a nice, pleasant chat, it looked more like an angry conversation. I cranked the truck up, put it in gear, and just pulled out, didn’t look for traffic or anything. As I passed him he was just looking at me, still holding his hand to his face with this dead look on his face just staring at me. It gave me the creeps.
About the time I hit fifth or sixth gear, I looked in the mirror and there’s no one there.”