Sunday, September 27, 2009

Insurance, Knights in Shining Armour and hypnotic taxi drivers

There was a battery light on when I left himself's homestead in Rosland, and the steering was a bit heavy, all power lost in it, but if I took it handy, we reasoned, it would be ok. Mr VC drove after me along the windiest road just to see if it was ok, and it seemed to be ok, so we said our goodbyes and I was on my way.
Made it almost half way home, was just leaving the outskirts of Longford, about to ring himself and tell him I was home free, on the straight all the way, when the radio flickered, dodgy dance tunes, surely it was just the reception, but then another little light came on the dash, and another, and the headlights started to shudder, and I knew I was in trouble. Pulled up just out of range of the last street light leading out of the town. Sitting on the side of the road, in the dark, hazard lights sounding tired.
A panicked call to Mr VC, and reassurance that he was getting into his noble steed and to the rescue. Couldn't sit there in the dark, so I began to walk. Walking along beside the hedgerows with big sounding animals making noises at me from inside, sudden jumps and crackles of twigs. I walked faster. Clutching the keys with the biggest one sticking out of my tight fist, ready to strike, or trying to look like I was ready to strike if there were any strange people around. Trying to look tall and big, no jacket on, had cleared the car before the journey.
Only rang insurance once I was bathed in the comforting glow of a garage a mile and a half back in towards town. They asked where I'd been headed... back to Dubland, I said, we'll try and sort you out so, they said. I couldn't believe it when they said they'd get me a taxi back home. The recovery man arrived about the same time as Mr VC.

A young kid in a huge truck. Mr VC had driven all the way just to see me, make sure I was safe, my knight in shining armour, I'm so lucky - really. The kid was lovely too, friendly, told us it was the alternator or some kind of belt that meant the car would not be going anywhere. He rang the insurance again to double check the arrangements. I was to get a taxi back, they would drop the car back to Dubland on Monday, to whatever garage I arrange for it. Unbelieveable service really.
Got a lovely taxi driver. A kindred spirit, left handed, creative type, we talked all the way back, about poetry, hypnosis, psychology, life in general etc.
Back in time to walk down for the radio show today - the theme was travel, tis a funny old world.
PS: The above picture of "Muck in the driveway" represents the only reminder I have of my car, chipped off from around the front wheel yesterday, remnants of the rally driving at electric picnic, before we left here to head west in the first place.


Dublin Dave said...

Still can't get over this story Various - glad you got home safely!

Niamh B said...

Thanks Dave! Me too! Pretty mad, but was so lucky the way it all worked out.

the watercats said...

ahh... sorry to hear about your car.. know how it feels to be without transport at a whim :-(
Good it all turned out o.k though, every so often we're sent a bit of an adventure to deal with :-)
Nice to hear there are still folk out there who are actually helpful, it makes me all warm inside... (or maybe that was just the chilli turkey I just had fer dins?)

Niamh B said...

Tks Watercats, tis only a car, I'd be inclined to say it's the chilli turkey since the helpful insurance, vehicle recovery, and taxi people were all just doing their jobs...
But they WERE doing an exceptionally nice and good job at their jobs, and made what could have been a horror into something kinda fun, so yeah, have to agree there are nice people out there.

Emma Bagnell said...

is there any way we can listen to your show hear, would love to hear you on the radio.. glad you got home ok, irish hospitality is not lost after all.

Niamh B said...

Hi Emma,
Yeah you can listen on line - at 5 in the morning your time, the link's on the main page. Trying to get podcasts organised in the mean time! Will keep ye posted.
and yeah - relieved it all ended up ok!

Kevin said...

Most of the time, the job is do is thankless,
A lot of the time I get abused,
sometimes I don't even get paid,
Occasionally, some idiot with too much drink in, ruins my nights work with a return fare, that I didn't order.
Sometimes though, being a gabby cabby, leads me to meet some interesting people, thankful people who appreciate the banter, people who need a bit of comfort, or encouragement. My job necessitates a personality of the 'Jack of all Trades' at times, a multiple personality show, for each passenger, the needs are met. But sometimes, a very rare occasion, I meet someone who lives on the same planet as myself, and it's great to be able to express the way things really are, with humour and respect.
To be honoured with a mention in Your blog, with thanks, a word so often forgotten in my world, is much appreciated, and re-affirms why I do this mostly thankless job. Thank You, or as they say in neck, 'Thanks Yourself'. Taximan

Niamh B said...

Hiya Kevin, thanks for calling in, like I said - it did shorten the trip being in the car with someone "from the same planet" as you say!
Take it easy!

PS - you'll have to start a blog now - adventures of a taxi driver... I'd read it!!