|sent from: London, UK. destnation:Bombay, India|
Los Angeles, 7.30am. At the airport, in a city I know, but I haven’t lived here for a few years. I’m on a business trip. My first ever. No one has ever sent me somewhere, paid for my ticket. I feel important. Someone else is even paying for lunch. Even better, the pressure is on the people I’m interviewing. It’s a sunny day, I’m alone. Standing at the cab stop I wait as an attendant tries to call one. There’s one rolling up. He stops 100 yards short. Attendant gestures, the cab crawls, oh so slowly. Eventually he arrives, and out steps a late middle-aged man, all smiles and enthusiasm, thick eastern european accent. I tell the driver where we are going, he stutters and has obviously no idea. I say ‘La Cienega?‘ He says ‘Yes, yes!‘ and turns away from La Cienega. ‘No, no, the other way.‘ He smiles ‘oh sorry.‘ Safely on our way, he says ‘first customer. Today first.‘ Ah that’s nice I think, I’m his first fare of the day. ‘Yes, today. First customer, first day. Driving cab.‘ Wait, did I hear him right? ‘Today is your first day as a cab driver?‘ I ask. He smiles.