Sunday, November 26, 2006

I got a club!

The rain is lashing down outside and the bucket catching the drips from the skylight is slowly filling up. I’ve reported this problem to the landlords but they always send out cowboys to patch it up. Once it dries out I’ll try and fix it myself with a roll of flashband and a blowtorch.

Yesterdays rain was a big help with the work. I started early to make up for not working on Friday night as I was just too fed up to care. The morning fares are so different to the night ones. I even managed to trap a fare out to Heathrow, first one for weeks. They were catching a British Airways flight from Terminal 4 to Seattle, Washington. I had to go into their house in Onslow Gardens, South Kensington to bring out their luggage and as per usual when I over-exert myself I thought my ticker was gonna give out. Why must people opt for oversized luggage? The journey to the airport was practically traffic-free but about one mile onto the M4 the skies darkened and the rain pelted down so fast that my two female passengers started shrieking “Oh my God!!!” and asked me to slow down and even to pull over. I re-assured them it would be OK. I had to slow down to a crawl anyway as the whole motorway had done the same. The squall lasted about ten minutes then, as often happens, the skies cleared and the sun appeared. It provided conversation for the remainder of the trip. We arrived at the Terminal 4 drop off and I scooted round to get them a trolley and put their humungous luggage on it. The fare was £49 exactly so a fifty would be an obvious amount to hand over if not fifty five? I got two twenties, a five, three pound coins and two fifty pence pieces. Tight C….

We have various gentleman’s clubs dotted around town that pay a commission to the driver for bringing them customers. Some of the pay outs start at a fiver, those clubs are widely avoided. Then there are some that pay huge amounts, like £50 per head. Whilst finishing work one night last week I decided to duck down Walton Street in Chelsea to see if I could add to my measly night’s takings. A couple of guys had just come out of the Art Bar and flagged me down. They were both well hammered and one of them came to my window and asked “we want to go somewhere dark” I said “dark as in the lighting or dark as in sexual?” “yeah, sexual” he replied. Kerching!!! It doesn’t happen often but it’s nice when it does. It makes you wonder how much these places charge the customers if they can afford to give the cabbies so much commission. I once took a four hander to the New Georgian Club in Mayfair and the lady came out after they’d paid the entrance fee and gave me £110. With that in mind then no guesses as to where my first stop was gonna be. As I pulled up out side the club the lady appeared and I directed one of the guys to go and speak with her. After a few moments he got back in the cab and said “that place is no good, we want somewhere darker”. Now I know where places are situated but not being a sexual deviant I have no idea what goes on inside. What were these guys looking for? Some sort of torture club? Do they even exist? At this point I was thinking that the “easy money” I was about to earn wasn’t gonna happen at all. The next club on my mental list was the Kabaret Club in New Bond Street just a few blocks away. I pulled up here and they both got out and entered the club. Not having taken anyone here in years I didn’t know what the protocol was and some of the doormen con you out of the money by saying stuff like “they’ve pre-booked” or “they’re meeting a party inside” which I knew would be bullshit as these two didn’t have a clue and I had chosen this club. I waited patiently outside and could see the doorman inside the front door looking over at me and then back at someone inside behind the reception desk. One of the two passengers I’d taken there then walked out and paid me the fare. £11.80 (no tip). He then walked away from the club and my heart sank. I watched him approach a cash machine and I thought “yes, it’s all good”. He got some money out and walked back to the club. I made sure I faked being on my phone as he looked at me. I didn’t want to arouse suspicion. After what seemed ages a pretty blonde came out of the club with one of those big golf umbrellas (it was still raining) and tapped on my window. “here’s £60 but you have to give the doorman £10” She’d already included two twenties and two tens to facilitate me giving her the ten for the doorman so I handed it over and thanked her and drove off homeward bound. £50 plus the £11.80 fare wasn’t bad for a twenty minute fare.

As my body clock is set to days I’m just off out now. With the rain and it being a Sunday it should be a very profitable shift. Catch you later.


Loui said...

I love your posts and know it all to be true....would love to mail you. You have an addy??

J xx

John said...

Stringfellows opned here in Dublin.
He didn't open in a clubland area. The resedents objected but it went ahead..Free champane for the press.No "consessions"were handed out to taxi drivers..No backhanders to drivers either. You have to remember that Casinos and other lap dancing clubs pay hommage to free enterprise.
Fair play to the working class people of Parnell St.
They put a picket on the place. Took photos of the perverts and closed the place down.
Supply and demand.. you can't sell anything where its not wanted.

london_cabby said... for anyone interested.

Cabbie X said...

I've heard some of the clubs in Vegas pay $50 a head. Clubs here tho only pay during a huge convention that happens in February, other than that its nada.

Anonymous said...

Who, without naming him, was your 'super mechanic' when you were a musher? Perhaps I should say what garage would you go to if you were buying again!

Keep up the blog, its first class.
if ever I thought I picked up some shit, your blog makes me feel well off!

Terry, Greenbadge.

london_cabby said...

Super Mechanic is my brother in law who is also a cabbie. There's nothing he can't do and no problem he can't solve. If I bought again I would have to use a LTi approved garage for the first three years and then I'd probably attempt a lot of stuff myself with my brother in laws guidance.

Kevin the Collie said...

Great blog, mate - keep it up. I am glad all that rain was good for someone, cos it's murder when you have to persuade a poncy dog to go out for a pee.

All the best John

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the reply, what I was trying to say was, if I need work doing on my Taxi, does your 'super mechanic' still work from a garage or is he a full time driver nowadays?
I use C&S, they're OK, but you always get the feeling your being ripped of for simple jobs, so i'm looking for honest garages which others use.

I'm intregued what Trevor paid you for your TX, I bought mine from there last year.

Cheers again, Terry.

Wozza said...

Hi L_C,

tell me, what club would you recommend if you weren't getting a kickback ? ;)

london_cabby said...

Wouldn't have a clue as I don't know what goes on inside any of these clubs, probably the furthest away to get more money on the meter.

Bob Hodge said...

London Cabbie-I read your blog everytime you add to it.Could you add your picture so we can see what you look like.(Not the one where you have a mask on.)
Wish you and your family have a Happy New Year and 2007.
I know a London Cabbie named John Beecham. He and his family live on the outskirts of London.
Thanks again-
Bob Hodge
Denver, Colorado USA

london_cabby said...

Sorry to disappoint Bob but thats as much of me as anyones likely to see


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