Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Forever Chasing

I am three and a half weeks behind with the cab rent. So, what’s new? Apparently nothing, as it’s the norm for me to be chasing hundreds of pounds to square the garage off. The good news is that another good, and I mean good, shift, will see me achieve my goal and I should be sorted by Wednesday afternoon. There aren’t even any repairs, minor or otherwise that need doing to the cab whilst I’m there unless a completely new suspension counts as a repair. The fact that the cab isn’t mine seems to soften the blow somewhat, but for the money I’m paying (eventually) I shouldn’t have to drive around in an old shitcart.

Anyhoo. The work is out there you just have to get your arse in the saddle and go and find it. I’ve only had a few days off since the turn of the year and apart from the first few days it seems to be ok work-wise. There’s nothing really out of the ordinary to report either which actually doesn’t make for a good post for the readers I’m afraid.

Tonight’s shift was amazing compared to all the other shifts I’ve done since the New Year for the simple reason that I earned a lot of money in a short space of time.
My football team, Leeds United, made a rare appearance on live TV so I had decided to stay in and watch the game, which we won by a goal to nil. Having this cab rent thing hanging over me I decided it was best to get out there. I started at 10pm, which is well late even for me and expected nothing from the shift.

The first job took me from Paddington out to the Isle of Dogs, a £35 ride. From there I went up onto Canary Wharf and ranked up on Cabot Square. I waited about 15 minutes and pulled off the rank, as it was extremely quiet. I made a circuit of the Wharf and trapped in Upper Bank Street, a couple of American businesswomen going back to the Isle of Dogs. After dropping them off I decided not to go back to Canary Wharf and drove through the Limehouse Link towards town. The yellow M of McDonalds caught my eye on The Highway so I drove in for a Hot Chocolate and a Chicken sandwich. The hot chocolate used to be great then they did something to it and it was all watery and now it’s almost back to how it used to be so it was quite enjoyable. As I drove out of the drive-thru a dodgy looking guy stuck his hand up and I lowered the window to see what he wanted. He only wanted to go all the way back to my side of town! Even if he did a runner I would still be in familiar territory so I took a gamble. As in most cases when you think the passenger is a wrongun he turned out to be the complete opposite and paid up no problem adding a good tip as well.

After another shorter trip I found my self in Kensington High Street. A couple looking and sounding hassled and harried flagged me down and asked for the Crowne Plaza Heathrow. Could the shift get any better? I was already into my first hundred in only a few hours. If only all nights could be like this.

The Xeta system was experiencing problems tonight so anyone wanting to do account work had to ring the office and be allocated the work manually. As I’m chasing cash today and tomorrow I couldn’t do any account work but Chris was out there tonight and he always likes to finish with an Underground job. After ringing the office on several occasions he was allocated a job with four pickups ending in Ruislip not far from his home near Watford.

I did a few more jobs and then called it a night after only four hours work. It had been a very productive four hours, which almost never happened.I think from next week people will start receiving their January pay packets so there will be more freaks and arseholes out there to make us cabbies lives a little more difficult. So until payday, take care out there.


Anonymous said...

You're a true story teller so you are.

Keiran from Strabane, Northern Ireland

HenvY said...

Just found your blog, it's great. I have to agree with that Irish feller there.

Workers Write said...

Hi. I just came across your wonderful blog. It's absolutely fantastic! I'm wondering if we could reprint one of your posts, "Forever Chasing," from Jan. 15, 2008 on WorkersWrite, a website created by the National Writers Union to encourage workers (of all stripes!) to tell stories about their working lives. We're creating a new category on the site called "Taxi! Stories," and I'd love to include this post of yours. Of course, we would credit you, and link back to your site. Thank you!
Rose Imperato
Editor, WorkersWrite