Thursday, June 15, 2006

Knackered Suspension

Since my last post the weather has cooled down somewhat. From the unbearable heat that we were having it has now dropped down to a bearable cooler temperature. I’m sure it’s only a brief respite and that the sun is lurking up there behind the clouds, but it’s nice all the same.

I’m guessing the ratio but probably one in every ten streets in London have speed bumps of some description or other. There are the smooth variety that only require a minor decrease in speed and then there are those that you must climb up one side and drop off the other. There are lots of in between styles as well and I’d love to meet the people that decide which type are going to be put where and give them a piece of my mind. Collectively, they are the cause of much damage to vehicles. Exhaust pipes and sumps regularly scrape these bumps causing hundreds of pounds worth of damage. Suspension systems also take a battering and it is for this reason that I had to take my cab to the garage yesterday. Every time I drove over a bump or pot hole a loud banging could be heard. Basically the suspension was knackered and I spent three hours at the garage waiting while they fixed it only to be told that they had been trying to fit a wrong part and that I would have to leave it overnight. They gave me an even older cab (94) which had no diesel in it, I had just filled the other one up, so I had to spend more money juicing this one up.

On the work front I’ve been doing OK this last week. As predicted I’m back out working in the evenings driving around with the dregs of society as well as the nice people.

I got hailed by a couple of losers a few nights ago in Stockwell. Why I stopped in Stockwell I’ll never know but these two guys were as high as kites and wanted to go on a drug run. We headed off towards the Tulse Hill area to a council estate and one of them got out and back in three or four times while the other one was whispering into his phone. I hate these types of jobs and if I get the opportunity I generally do what I did next. Both of them went in to a flat leaving a carrier bag on the back seat. And after observing them enter the flat I drove off with about £11 on the meter. I’ve done this many many times before and believe I’ve saved myself a lot of grief whilst losing a few quid along the way. There were two cans of Carlsberg Special Brew (the preferred drink of alcoholics and losers) in the bag which got thrown off Vauxhall Bridge on the way back in to civilization.

Have any of you drivers ever been egged? Is it just a British thing? I got egged for the second time this year in Cavendish Avenue in St. John’s Wood a few nights ago. The other time was in Albany Street next to a council estate. You’d expect to get egged there but not St. John’s Wood. This time the egg splattered on the rear wing so it was easy to hose off at the garage round the corner. I never saw the culprit this time as it came from over someone’s garden wall but the time before it was a gang of kids and they caught the cab lovely while I had my window down and it sprayed into the back through a gap in the screen that the TX’s have, it made a right mess and took me half an hour to clean. Little bastards.

After two years of detouring through Porchester Road, Bishops Bridge was finally re-opened after being completely replaced with a brand new bridge. It is the main access point for Paddington Station from the north and also a gateway to many other destinations. Although you get used to and adapt when a major road is closed it’s nice when it re-opens and eases the traffic in the area.

England play Trinidad and Tobago in their second game in the World Cup today at 5pm. Cabs will be scarce on the roads but I will be out working soon after and expect to “Clean Up”.
COME ON ENGLAND!!!!!!!!!!!


ileen said...

congrats to your team. i watched from an irish pub in nyc and nearly all were rooting for t&t. i suspect some were fans of the underdog pulling off an unlikely victory, while others were irish and anti-english on principle.

london_cabby said...

We're not all bad, honest.

wil said...

The speed-bumps on the roadways here aren't too bad. However, those in the apartments and condos are a real bitch. Some are so high and have such actute sides that just the inertia of the suspended body following the dropping frame down causes you to scrape bottom. Those, and potholes, mandate quarterly front-end alignments. Tires are replaced every 6 months and brakes every 9 months. Glad I don't have to pay for all that. :)

wil said...

Almost forgot.


Very common in the States. Especially on Halloween night (October 31st). MOST especially on Halloween night.

We used the number of eggs on a patrolcar to determine when to shutdown a party. Always occured in the older districts where there were plenty of "squirrel holes" to launch an attack from. Newer communities, with wide boulevards and setback stores, were too exposed for any but the most stupid of assailants.

blueingy said...

Wil's right; egging is huge in the States on Halloween. But that doesn't mean you won't get hit by a drive-by any other day of the year. My windshield got splattered last year whilst driving down a particularly dark road, thanks to a car full of teenagers coming the opposite direction. That could've ended badly!