18 December 2008

Funny runner

Wednesday night shift, winding down. I was hunting for the last few fares to put me over budget, and after I dropped a merry couple in Hackett a job came up in Dickson. I was torn between wanting to gas up at the Dickson service station where I could use the taxi’s fuel card (as opposed to paying for fuel myself and waiting several weeks for reimbursement) or earning a few dollars.

I figured any fare coming out of Dickson early Thursday morning wouldn’t be going too far, and I’d end up about as far from the Shell servo as I was now, so I hit the button and got the job.

Corey from Dickson going to the City. Well, that was fine too. There was a bit of work in the City, so I could string the jobs together and worry about gassing up later.

Corey wasn’t waiting at the address specified. He was over the other side of the street, on a corner, flagging me down. That’s a bad sign right there - he calls for a cab and then doesn’t wait a single minute, no he’s off looking for any passing cab. If I’d been any slower I might have lost my passenger to another cabbie.

But I collected him, quoted the name on the job screen and we were off to the City. He must have been a comedian in his day job, because he launches into a standup routine in my front seat, and geez he was funny. Kept me chuckling all the way down Northbourne Avenue.

“Any places still open?” he asks me, and I name Mooseheads as a possibility, and the Casino as a certainty. We pull up outside Mooseheads and he peers at it, saying that if it’s no fun, he’ll look for me at the cab rank. Then he gets out, disappears inside and that’s the last I see of him. There’s $12.90 on the meter, but I’m not about to leave my cab where the cops will pounce on me if I go inside to hunt up the money.

Funny guy.

I go around to the rank, but there’s a passenger waiting, I take him off to a distant suburb and I never get back to the city before my shift ends. Normally I’d not worry too much about thirteen dollars, but in this case, I’ve got the feeling I’ve been taken for a ride. So to speak.

Never mind. I’ve got Corey’s address to investigate, and I’ll try the polite approach first.

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