Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Taxi Driver

On the rare occasions when she travels by taxi, my mother loves talking to the driver. She's incredibly sociable and by the time she's gone a couple of miles will know every detail of the driver's life - - and then she'll tell it to me. "- - and he's got three children, and guess what! The oldest one's pregnant and she's so big they thought it was twins, but it's not!"

I have to say that I have been known to be less than fascinated by the finer details of the life of someone I've never met - worse, from time to time I've said so, which I must say made me feel very cruel to my poor mother who will talk to anyone, anywhere, from the best possible motives - she's simply interested in people.

I'm interested in people too - - but actually, I'm shy and I don't always want to have to strike up an artificial conversation with someone new. So often, when I'm in a taxi, I'm sitting there thinking "Just shut up and DRIVE."

The most unpleasant thing is when you get one of those drivers who feels obliged to tell you his political opinions and - worse - assumes you share them. "Mrs Thatcher? Greatest world leader ever. I wish we could have her back, don't you?"

Yesterday I was lucky with my taxi drivers. I had to take three taxis to do a triangle from my house to Elland Road, then from Elland Road to Leeds University, and finally from Leeds University to my home. The reason for all this was that I knew I wouldn't have time to park at Leeds University.

All three were really interesting. The first one had a degree in Biomedical Science and was trying to get a job which would use it - - but meanwhile, he was driving a taxi. The second one loved football and it made him sad in a way whenever he had to go to Elland Road because he had once had hopes of turning professional until he had a bad knee injury in his teens. And the third one waxed lyrically, and very entertainingly, about Leeds traffic and the many problems that he had had with it.

So I very much enjoyed talking to all three of them. Perhaps it was that I was in a fairly extrovert mood (for me) or perhaps it was simply that from the start I thought all three were decent blokes, who didn't make assumptions about me because of the way I was dressed (all in black as I usually am for roleplay) or the way I speak (Grammar School Posh Northern).

Either way, it was an enjoyable day, the work was interesting, and the taxi drivers were a Good Thing.


Blogger Silverback said...

You pair give grumpy passengers a bad name !

As you never mentioned a smell, I take it 'our' infamous taxi driver was having the day off - maybe to have his annual shower.

9:09 pm  
Blogger Yorkshire Pudding said...

Was one of these taxi drivers called John Worboys by any chance?

9:41 pm  
Blogger Daphne said...

Silverback - - I think Smelly Taxi Driver was my worst-ever taxi driver experience and I know you enjoyed it as little as I did! Even the political ones were less troublesome than him. Still, at least London smelled clean by comparison.
YP - - no, no, luckily none of them was John Worboys - - I hope he won't be driving a taxi for a Very long time!

11:43 pm  

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