Category Archives: Personal

When America was Great

I remember when America was great, I think it was about a year ago, before we realised that an
idiot had a chance of winning the presidency, back when America was a welcoming place, when the New York Times and the Boston globe were celebrated by the masses as the quality source of news that they are, rather than fake and everyone seemed to realise  Breitbart was just sensationalist, conspiracy theory spouting claptrap, I could go on but the thing is America seemed to be steadily improving as time went by until Trump, hopefully we won’t be forever looking back and marking 2016 as the last time America was Great.

Bringing a car to Spain.

I need to bring a car from Dublin to Alicante, (not me actually … it’s a mate, I’m just going along for the ride).
We’re hoping to avoid the UK motorways and instead are thinking about going from Rosslare to Saint Nazaire (a twenty one hour crossing) and then continuing from there on to Gijon in Northern Spain (another sixteen hours) using LD lines who now operate ferries from Rosslare, it will cost about €800 for the two of us and the car (four berth cabin on both ferries), strangely enough it would only be about €900 for four of us so it seems we’d be better trying to make it more of a lads session, (probably not too much hope of getting the girls on board and into a four berth?), we will then be heading from Gijon to Alicante using the excellent Spanish motorway system.
We expect to be fully rested after the two ferry crossings and ready to take on the eight hour road trip, sharing the driving with as few pit stops as possible.
Have any of you done this trip or do you know of anyone that has?
How did it work out?
(Mainly the ferry crossings)
We’ve done a few road trips down the years but nothing on this scale, I don’t think the scale of it or the time involved will faze us too much as we tend to enjoy adventures of this nature, hopefully I’m not being too naive, we’ve done a few five hour ferry crossings/road trips thankfully and the friendship has survived intact.

Shift Shots

Just something I’m trying out and very much a work in progress.
I hope to add snaps taken from the Taxi whilst stopped in traffic, parked on a rank or after dropping a passenger.
They’ll be taken with my phone, reduced to quarter size and 60% quality, (so they don’t take too long to load)
I’m no photographer so don’t expect much, but someone out there might be interested in random pictures taken around Dublin?

Please take a look: SHIFT SHOTS

There’s just 4 photos there at the moment but I’ll add more as I go, hopefully I’ll get better at it as time goes by?

A day in the life

One of the reasons I chose to switch to days was to avoid having to listen to drunken, broken hearted fools spilling all their woes:
My First job on Monday morning was a German gentleman heading to the Airport, he took no time telling me he was returning home following the death of his mother after a year long battle with cancer, he was obviously heart broken, he babbled while imparting this distressing information, I did my best to comfort him saying the awful illness had given him the opportunity to spend more time with his mother rather than it being a sudden loss, laden with regret, I advised him to take comfort in the arms of his family and to use the closeness of the coming days to insure they met more often, now that a major focal point was no longer around, I assured him his mother would have had some good times back in 1960s Hamburg and she wouldn’t want him to be too sad at her passing, I have no idea if anything I said was useful but took comfort in the €15 tip and the “thanks for the words” parting comment.
Another reason for seitching was to avoid those journeys when you spend the whole trip wondering if the girl in the back seat was going to soil your vehicle;
My Third job on Monday (2nd was un-eventful) was a girl who took 8 mins to appear from her abode after 2 unanswered phone calls to her mobile, she apologized saying she had been on the toilet, that she was feeling very ill, her stomach being in knots, with uncontrolled outbursts from all orifaces, we had three stops on the way to the doctor, thankfully the upholstery remained unscathed.
I was really delighted when deciding to cover days to at last avoid the entertainer, regaling me with jokes and song;
Later on Monday afternoon I picked up the lovely Roisin Ingle, who was on her way to the launch of her new book about the newspaper articles of Maeve Binchly, she regaled me with a practice run of her speech, thanking various folk that had helped her and then further entertained me with a reading from the aforementioned book, a piece about a man in a ladies toilet.
The difference between the daytime and night time versions of the above jobs is that I would gladly do any of the above jobs again ….. without hesitation.

Weekends off

For the first time in sixteen years I have weekends off, it’s brilliant!
Should have switched to days years ago, it’s far more civilised.
Completely different job though, my knowledge of Dublin nightlife is no longer of any value to me.
Nobody wants to know where everyone’s going,? Which night club, restaurant or bar is in for their age group/sexual orientation?
No more wondering is this guy/girl going to puke their stomach contents all over my rear upholstery?
Instead I need to know where office buildings are, take me to Facebook, Goodbody’s, PWC, State Street ……..huh?
It’s re-invigorating, a brand new learning curve, my brain is waking up again.

Switching to Days

After 16 years of doing nights, I’m switching to days from Tuesday, I’m giving it three weeks to make the transition, accepting it will take at least that long to get used to it, I reckon it will be tough.
Any tips on handling daytime passengers and on where the work is would be greatly appreciated.

The Friday blast…

From the past … A look back through the archives to see what I was writing about 4 years ago this week, I was a happier Taxi driver back then (I think) I might make it a weekly event?

I only looked back after I’d written the above paragraph and guess what?
This day 4 years ago I was writing about a job interview I’d been offered (it was with Harvey Norman) I decided not to take it in the end!

Read it here

A Diabetic Taxi Driver

A new label for your’s truly, diagnosed last Friday with type 2 Diabetes,  being sent for further tests on Monday to discover what the future holds?

I’ve decided to keep a record of my thoughts and experiences, particularly at this early stage, it’s also a good excuse to try out the B2evolution blog software.

I hope you take the time to visit the new blog and share any thoughts/knowledge you may have about this illness?

( Illness? is that what you call it? Disease maybe? … Affliction?)

Please Visit the new blog:  (Blog Deleted, – Software attracts too much spam)

Gadget Heaven!

My contract with O2 has finally ended so I’ve signed up with 3 mobile,
I got a nice new iPhone 4 for free! With an “all I can eat” data package and I’m paying €25 per month less for the privelege!
The first thing I did was register for “Skygo” and now I can watch my full Sky package (Sky sports/ Sky movies) while I sit on the rank, thankfully with a pause facility for when customers interupt my enjoyment …. with no worries about the data charges!
I couldn’t wait to go to work tonight.
Stoke 1 – Newcastle 3 … great game, Champion League tomorrow night … ha ha call this working?

Depressed Enough

Just back off the holidays, thanks to V and J for inviting us to their lovely home in the La Maequesa Del Golf resort, great time had as always, sorry to the girls for the regression to childhood ways.

Arriving back to the grey and grimy weather has me depressed enough, so I’m giving the forum a miss for the time being.

I’m depressed enough so the 261 unread messages will remain so,

Sorry to anyone that tried to ring me while I was away, decided to switch off for the duration.

Taxi Driver, revisited.

It was over 30 years since I’d seen it, I hadn’t really understood it, didn’t really like it, although I pretended I did, I went along with the gang, spouted the “you talkin’ to me” line with the best of them, but didn”t really get the hype.
So I decided to watch it again and boy am I glad I did!
Scorsese captured the Taxi drivers view of the world briliantly, the eyes in the mirror, the face looking through the window at the world outside from his little cocoon, observing, but not really a part of it, not belonging to it. Travis Bickle’s reaction to passengers, his brief meaningless conversations with them, some affecting him more than others. His growing sense that the city is a vile place, witnessing too much of it’s underbelly, it’s seedier aspect and the uncaring depraved nature of some of it’s inhabitants.
His off the charts reaction to all this is ultimately understandable although the city’s evaluation of his deeds seemed far fetched and a little disturbing.
Now I think I get it, I understand the hype, I want to watch it again.

Taxi Driver’s Back Stories

I found this article whilst trawling the internet: http://kevinc.net/stories/taxi-driver-lost/ , it’s by a lad who got talking to his Taxi driver, the driver once owned several travel agencies that went bust, wife left him and he reached a point where he considered suicide, (somehow ended up driving a Taxi)
It got me thinking about the trade, a lot of us ended up doing this job because of failed businesses, inability to work for a boss, or we somehow became unemployable, how many of us actually decided on it as our career choice rather than stumbling into it as a last resort?
I myself always wanted to run my own business, but I have never been really been a risk taker, I had loads of ideas for this and that down the years, always endeavoring to make a living whilst staying in normal employment and with minimal to no investment, …  but the old saying is true:  you have to speculate to accumulate, I eventually took up Hacking … the rest is history.
Next time you get a Taxi, ask the driver how/why he started? maybe he’ll tell you …. maybe he’ll throw you out of the car … be a risk taker.

My Friday Night!

I was invited along with a friend to the launch of Xpert Taxis new iPhone application in the Penthouse of the fantastic Wrights Venue over the weekend.

I got a presentation of the App from Andy the IT guy and I have to be honest and say I don’t really get it, way to cumbersome in my opinion I’d far rather pick up the phone and dial ( maybe despite all this blog/forum computer messing i’m old fashioned at heart.

Anyway for those of you so inclined the App is in the Apple App store (obviously enough)

I spoke at some lenght to Dermot Quinn a real old timer Grandfather and father before him Taximen, he’s Xperts  sales manager, used to run Co-op, he had some great old tales to tell, like all the old nick names: his Grandfather a Taximan was a cantankerous individual known as the Bull, his father another taximan was less so and was known as the Calf, unfortunately  I cannot remember what Dermot himself was called, but it was related maybe Cow or son of Calf?

There was a BBQ and the half a cow burger went down well washed down with a couple of free rounds!

At Ten O’ Clock the general public were let in and our wristbands gave us “ACESS ALL AREAS” so off myself and the mate went!

We rambled down to the main floor where a fight night was coming to and end, we got to see the main event … two brothers beating the lard out of eah other for 3 rounds, sexily clad girls announcing the rounds and a compare giving it the “Lets get reay to RUUUUUUUMBLE” routine …..great fun!

Then we went up to the Purple room where they played old 80’s songs and a few young girls took pity on the 2 grandads, dragged us up onthe floor for a wee jig …….. great crack!

Then we wandered around the Balcony, young couples getting off, we looked down on where the boxing ring once was, which was now teaming with youngsters giving it loads to the BOOM BOOM BOOM …….interesting

We walked on past the suites and managed to  blag our way into one of them,  a gang of kids inside,  one celebrating a 21st, it was a  little room all to themselves with a huge window looking on to the main florr and the same BOOM BOOM music as before…… Great!

Onward into the toilets, there a black guy feeding us hand towels and smellies,  BOOM BOOM music and a window  like the suite, we danced with the black dude  in the toilet ……a bit odd to be honest!

Then we went on to the Main floor,  holy shit, it was clogged …….barely room to move, with  the 2 scanily clad girls from the boxing match  now on plinths giving it socks …………… WOW!

Then we went back to the Penthouse, picked up the coats and  were out the door at 2:30 am … still laughing ……..great night!

€55 for a Taxi back to Rathfarnham ……..hurts!

I was downhill from there ……  My Son arrived back from the new Sara nightclub in Rathfarnham beaten by a Toerag, headbutted and punched about the Face! ………bleedin brutal!

My daughter went off to the States on Holiday at around 3am, taken to the Airport by Foxrock taxis for €35 , can’t be that much further on to Swords! …….nice one though, Thanks Frank!

And Thanks Vinny & Co  (Xpert) for the Fantastic Night, we  really enjoyed it