Saturday, August 26, 2006

Off to San Diego

It’s been a tiring last 36 hours for me. I had to do a shift yesterday (Thursday) to earn some money to give the kids who were off to see their mother in the USA.
After work I had to sort out the stuff they would need to take with them paying careful attention to the current regulations for flyers. I was still astounded when we were queuing at United Airlines at Heathrow Airport at the amount of people being pulled out of the line for having more than one piece of cabin luggage. There was also a table where people could leave prohibited stuff that they had overlooked such as lighter, scissors, BOTTLED DRINKS for God’s sake!!! Don’t these people watch the news? One guy who looked Japanese or Korean was pulled out because he had on a massive backpack and was holding on to another bag he planned to take on the plane. He was asked nicely to step out of the line and refused. Bad move! Security were there in seconds and he was dragged away protesting.
I left the airport after the kids had gone through where I couldn’t and debated whether to go to the Taxi Feeder Park and queue up for a job. I hadn’t been to sleep yet but didn’t feel in the mood to work either. I went to my parent’s house as they were expecting a satellite engineer at 9am to re-align their dish, as their pictures were pixelating, and I had to be there to tell him the problem. He came at 8.30am and sorted the problem. A new LNB was fitted and the picture and signal were perfect. I got talking to the guy and he was telling me how lucrative the job could be. I always fancied trying something like that but just never did. I went home to sleep but first I logged on to one of those Flight Tracking sites to check on the progress of my kids’ journey. They took off for Chicago at 8.20am and by 10am when I checked they were over the Atlantic. After a 7-hour sleep I checked again and they had landed at Chicago. From there on I had no idea if they would make their connection for the flight to San Diego on time but have since found out that they are now safely with their mother in San Diego. If you’re reading this D+K, Hi kids!!!

Their 1st plane was a United Airlines Boeing 777

Summer is well and truly over. The rain has been falling continuously for the last week with a brief respite here and there. I’ve always managed to make money during the evenings in spite of the odd bad night. London is so diverse and full of people that if you can’t make a decent living at this job you must be doing something wrong. On the other hand if your heart’s not in it then I suggest you pack it up and try something else.

Something occurred tonight that made me think of my daughter. I picked up a very pretty lady of Asian origin. It looked like she had been out on the town and had a great evening. She had on very trendy and modern clothes and had make-up on although she probably never needed it. By the time we got to her destination a totally different girl got out of the cab and paid me at the window. Gone were all the trendy clothes and gone was all the make-up. In front of me stood a fully kitted out Muslim woman with mask who was probably going into a very strict house where her Muslim parents or a Muslim husband awaited her. I thought it was quite sad that in modern day Britain people who obviously enjoy all the freedoms this country offers have to tip-toe around other people who don’t allow them to be themselves. Something in the way we looked at each other said that she knew what I was thinking and vice versa but I never spoke a word to her.

I only did half a shift as I was still a little tired.
This weekend is Notting Hill Carnival weekend and there will be ample opportunity for me to make up the money I never earned tonight.


Anonymous said...

I was just wondering how long you have to wait on average when u rank up out side victoria and Paddington. Is it pot luck on the timing becuase sometimes i see a long que of taxi's and no punters and over time i see about 20 people waiting and no taxi's. Ps i'm off to the carnival today, and i normally get leg less, so if you see a guy in a liverpool kit looking wasted with a couple of crunched up 20's asking to go south of the river, BOOM ME AS YOU SAY. i'll probably will be sick in the back of your motor mate. dON'T BE A MUG LOL ( i've already had can fosters and its on 11 )

jo said...

I think anonymous above is more than well on the way to being absolutely slaughtered - and I know you 'so wouldn't' go anywhere near the Carnival - it's a lunatic asylum!!

I was very touched by your observation of the young asian woman and you are probably right about her, she doesn't want to upset her family(which means she cares or is frightened) and she may well be married, perhaps to someone she didn't even choose. I'm so glad I wasn't born into that life.


Stitchin-Liz said...

I LOVE Carnival!!! I had a blast there a couple of years ago.

london_cabby said...

You can get a job straight away from most ranks or you can wait until you've had enough and pull off.