.... sorry for taking so long to post anything else, doing the job full time has taken a fair bit of adjusting and to be honest I've just not found the time to do t'blogging. Am taking advantage of the hour I have while Mrs Jester and the kids watch "Dr Who".....
Well it's been an interesting few weeks, the sheer physical nature of the job has been amazing, I know I'm not digging holes or anything, but driving for 10 hrs or so a day is bleeding knackering.
In the last two weeks I've tried my ideal working week, which is Mon-Wed in early and home by late afternoon/early eve and Thur-Fri, take kids to school and go in after lunch until whenever.
So far so good, although from talking to others long in the tooth, things are slow and the credit crunch etc (I do hate that term) have taken their toll - my philosophy is that if I can survive in this climate, things can only get better.
I've had some very interesting customers, a couple who I said I'd mention on here, as they're doing good things,
One lady, I picked up from Borough High St and took her to Waterloo, she runs a pet insurance company called Animal Friends Insurance , and had just had lunch with a journo who she had paid towards his trip to China to investigate cruelty to animals. The company are a non-profit organisation, and plough the profits back into animal welfare, have a look at them and if you insure your cat's 9 lives, think about using them.....
Another was a guy I happened to pick up one Friday as I was heading back down Regents Park Rd from Primrose Hill, we were equally surprised to see each other, but neither of us complained. This guy, a fellow SE Londoner originally, now living in Notting Hill, runs Reach To Teach, who run mobile schools for rural Indian villages that don't have access to these facilities.
It was great to here this guy speak with such enthusiasm for what he does, the area is where his parents are originally from, so he has an affiliation with the country and isn't just doing it because it'll look good on his CV - Good Luck Sanjeev!
In terms of the day to day cabbing biz, I must say that I have got all my nerves out of the way, and am starting to get used to the regular tram lines that you travel, rush hours meaning stations to office, lunchtimes offices to watering holes and evenings any of the above.
As I said before most people are very nice, giving you a preferred route if you ask, or in a lot of cases leaving to you "cos you know the best way...." However, this rule is always subject to exceptions, the example I cite I'm sure will be repeated many times as I travel this road to retirement.....
I'm ranked at London Bridge and I reach the front of the queue,
Lady X "Knightsbridge please, I'm going to Harrods"
Me " OK "
So off I set, seconds later we're at the bottom of London Bridge St
Lady X "Knightsbridge please, I don't want to repeat myself 50 times!"
Me "That's ok, I did hear you at the station"
Before we go further, let me paint the scenario, it's a weekday, it's 5.30pm, we're going from SE London to SW London.......... I've elected to go to Blackfriars/Embankment/The Mall/Constitution Hill etc etc (apologies to those non-techies among you).
So we're in the inevitable traffic in Northumberland Ave, when she pipes up
Lady X " You're supposed to take me the quickest way, I don't want to go the scenic route"
Me "Well madam, I'm sorry but this is rush hour and I can assure you I've taken the route that is best and others would do the same"
Lady X " I don't care, what choice do I have"
Me "Madam, you are entitled to get out if you are not happy, they're are plenty of cabs around"
Lady X " I can't do that can I, I need to ring my friend who I'm meeting" (no phone call made, intriguingly enough)
Me "Well, I'll do my best"
We then eventually get to Belgrave Sq and I cut through to get to the rear entrance of Harrods, anything to get this cow out of my hair!!!
Me "that'll be £13.40 please"
Lady X "Here you go (hands me £20), you'll need that on the dole queue, the DOLE queue is very long you know!"
And there we parted company, hopefully never to meet again....
Oh well, that's all for now, I'll post again tomorrow with my who's who list of recent customers..... you can't wait can you!