Thursday, April 13, 2006

Instant recall

Has this ever happened to anyone? You've recently read about or seen a place around town but in all your years as a cabbie you've never had to take anyone there. All of a sudden, pretty soon after you've found out about it someone gets in the cab and asks to go there? It really makes you look like you know your stuff doesn't it? I had that happen to me tonight with a recording studio near Portobello Road. I was reading a biography of a band on the net and they mentioned that they'd recorded an album at Basing Street Studios. I've been cabbing for 16 years and never knew about them yet tonight I took this bloke straight to them and he was most impressed. Uncanny or what?
It was pretty quiet tonight but I still managed to take my money. I discovered this Chinese Take Away a few weeks ago over on Battersea Park Road and have been going back regularly as they do a pukka Satay Chicken and Rice. You'd be amazed at how many of these places there are around town but also at how many are terrible.

When it's so quiet I often go and rank up outside the London Hilton in Park Lane. I've had some decent rides from there in the past and people can come out of there and ask to be taken any where. A Russian couple came out one night around 9pm and asked for Stanstead Airport. It's London's fifth airport and the furthest away being actually outside London in the county of Essex. As I pulled up at the airport the meter clicked onto £105 and in broken English the man started complaining about the high price. I just shrugged my shoulders and held my hand out.
Anyway, I never got a long ride from there tonight just one to China White's, a nightclub in the West End. As I ducked and dived down some back streets to get onto Piccadilly one of them was blocked by a lorry. He was just blocking the whole street whilst he unloaded. All the cabs behind me started honking their horns so I did as well but the driver never appeared so everyone started backing up and going the longer way around (more money for me). I should've taken a picture but I often forget I have the camera with me. A lot of the pictures I take come out blurred, I think the camera has been dropped one too many times so tomorrow I'm going to take an older one out with me as the pictures it takes are much sharper.

By 1.30am it was all over and I found myself cruising around aimlessly. I had the radio on and Sade was singing Your Love Is King and I started nodding off so I juiced up at the petrol station above and called it a night.


wil said...

Your pics are really great.

Mahalo for sharing London with all of us. :)

steveg said...

Iteresting Blog, good to hear what goes on as you drive around - just came here for the first time today - Are you a Leeds Fan? - I am proud to say that I have been for just over 40 years now (I even worked for the club for a short time too!)

Best Wishes


london_cabby said...

Supported them since 72 through thick and thin. Usually get up to Elland Road a few times a season but not this season. Will be at the playoffs or hopefully the final if it's easy to get tickets for me and my son.

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