I have become somewhat of a taxi hailing maverick, having lived in a trendy inner city area for over a year now. This is also related to the fact that I do not own a car, nor do I have sufficient paperwork that allows me to manoeuvre a machine so much larger than myself. I made this choice a few years back when I decided that cars were evil. I am more than happy to walk everywhere or catch the light rail, bus or train or soon to be bicycle (prepare yourselves for a plethora of ‘I have a bicycle!’ posts once my little baby Clomo arrives). Yet due to the slightly difficult nature of walking around late at night and out of sheer laziness, I am often found hailing taxis like a real pro.
Occasionally I forget that I’m not in New York and can’t simply say ‘1st and 5th, and step on it will ya, I haven’t had a hot dawg yet with disgusting black coffee, so I’m not in the mood for chit chat, you got that buddy*?’
My real strategy comes out when I’m walking on the wrong side of the road. Suddenly, like a hawk, I spot the yellow light flashing in the distance. Hand goes up, body simultaneously begins to cross the road, I’m in the back seat in less than five seconds, declaring where I need to go and giving acute directions as to the fastest way to get there, while successfully applying lipstick and acting as a double agent. Easy.
On Saturday night I was flustered, already so ridiculously late to an important event and not being able to locate a taxi on this part of the road, due to road works. I walked further and still struggled to find a taxi, when suddenly, a taxi appeared out of nowhere from the wrong direction. Normally I would do the ‘hand up thing, cross road, jump in’ manoeuvre, but it was a busy road and the taxi driver knew it wouldn’t work. But being a taxi hero, he did an illegal turn to get to me (I did look fairly smashing, I must say, I would illegal turn for me too).
Then something ridiculous happened.
Another taxi just behind him spotted me (WHERE WERE YOU ALL WHEN I WAS STRUGGLING DOWN THE ROAD, TOTTERING IN MY HEELS IN A FLUMMOXED STATE?!?!) He saw how taxi driver number one was already doing an illegal turn to get to me. So what does this little genius do? He proceeded to cut in front of the first taxi driver, also attempting an illegal turn, arriving right in front of me before the other guy even has a chance to give him a stern head nod. My heart went out to taxi driver number one when I saw him looking perplexed at what quickly became a comedic situation. I didn’t even hesitate for one moment before running to him.
Taxi No.1: ‘Oh you came to me!’
Me: ‘Yes, I hailed you first and you turned for me despite the odds! It’s taxi 101 man’
Taxi No.1: ‘That man so sneaky, he nearly kill us all’
Me: ‘I know, we sure showed him’
Taxi No.1: ‘Yes we show him!’ – then he paused before saying, ‘thank you for choosing me’.
Maybe some cars (and their drivers) aren’t so evil after all.
*based entirely on sitcoms and films I’ve seen. When I was in New York and hailing cabs it was just a series of me pointing at things.