I live my life from day to day. I need to work almost every day of the week to stay ahead of the game. One day off and I start sinking. Two or three days off and throw a few high profile family birthdays in, a day out at a theme park and a family get together and it’s safe to say I’m in deep shit. Which is why I had to do two stints today. I hate working days, as the traffic is always bad. The jobs are shorter and the meter charges at a lower rate. That said, the quality of the passengers can be better. It’s generally women shopping, business people going in to The City etc. No drunks, no losers and no bilkers (people who haven’t got any money or people who run away without paying). Trust me to get a bilker. It was a very short job from Fulham Road to Old Church Street in Chelsea. I had £4.20 on the meter and she gave me a pound and said she would go get the rest. She looked rough, like a retired prostitute. I know this because in 16 years I must have picked up hundreds of them and they all use the phrase “alright darlin?” So I waited 5 minutes, then 10, then drove off as I have done countless times at night empty handed. I never saw where she went as she walked down the street so I couldn’t go knock on the door. 3 jobs later I was driving close by and I saw her walking down Kings Road. I stopped across from her and shouted “Oi where’s my three quid?” She replied “Oh shit I forgot” and indicated for me to go over to her, for what, I don’t know. I just said, “forget it” and waved her away. She’ll need a cab another day or night and it won’t be mine she gets in.
I hadn’t had any breakfast so I drove round to Zanellis in Old Brompton Road and had a coffee and a sandwich. There’s nowhere to park round there and the traffic wardens come out of nowhere. While sitting there eating my sandwich I spotted a warden and quickly sped off. My coffee flew off the dashboard and all over the gear stick and my receipt pads. You should’ve heard me swear…just a little bit.
I paid a few bills then went home. I knew the kids were going out to celebrate my son’s 18th Birthday so I didn’t have to cook. I grabbed a few hours sleep and was back on the road at eight thirty.
Passengers waiting for taxis
It was desperately quiet and I only managed half of what I would normally expect to earn on a Tuesday night. Victoria Station was running (very busy) so I kept going back there.
Only a couple of incidents of note to report.
I picked up a mother and daughter from Paddington Station with two great big heavy cases. I struggled to get them into the cab. Halfway to where we were going the lady asks me if I would take the cases into their flat for an extra fiver. I agreed. When we got there it was on the third floor and there was no lift. By the time I’d got the two cases up the six flights of stairs I was completely fucked. A fiver just didn’t seem worth it. I sat in the cab for a full ten minutes composing myself; I’m not the fittest of blokes and I honestly thought I was going to have a heart attack. I have mates who would ask for £20 and £30 to carry cases up that many stairs but I just haven’t got the front to do that. In the past I have declined citing back problems.
Our taxis are wheelchair accessible and have ramps that pull out. You will often pick up people in wheelchairs who wait by the side of the road either by themselves or with relatives and friends. The whole chair just slides straight in and even has straps to secure it although nobody uses them. The only problem is that some of these people smell of piss or even shit. I’m not being cruel but there’s a few that are known for it and cab drivers won’t pick them up. I was flagged down by someone in South Kensington and I shouted over to her “where to?” she said, “it’s not for me it’s for her”, pointing to a “known smeller” and I just drove off. Honestly, I can’t be having any of that in my cab. I’ve been caught out a few times and spent the entire journey heaving as if to vomit. No thanks. Let Dial-a-ride take them.
Excuse the blue but i've done something wrong and can't be bothered to delete it and start again.
UPDATE...Changed colour to what you see now.
Can any body tell me why, if I post more than one picture, only the first or top one opens up bigger when clicked. the others don't open? Strange.