A couple of weeks back I had to get to a meeting 40 minutes away. I was running late and tried to hail a cab. I stood for less than five minutes in pouring rain and got soaked literally to the skin. But I got a cab (not easy in the rain).
The driver said ‘you’re soaked here’s a towel’ which was very kind. He always carries a couple of sports kits in the front, it seems. So I got drier but was very cold and asked if he could turn up the heat. So he now offered me three of his ‘branded’ hoodies. I put one on instead of my wet jacket and wrapped the other two round me.
These turn out to be from a big bag of clothes sat next to a big bag of tools. The ‘brand’ is because he also runs an electrical business and his team wear branded clothes with the company name on them. He often does a job himself on the way to or from driving, or if its ‘quiet’. So he’s a taxi driver, a business owner, AND an electrician.
The sports gear is because he is also a sports coach at evenings and weekends, to a high standard, and even gets involved with people who have been or will be international athletes. And he is an athlete to a regional standard himself. Of course. So we discussed my attitudes to exercise, and the challenges I have with it, and it was quite motivational.
But what about his family? Surely there is no time. Well, he likes to go for a five hour bike ride with his wife at weekends.
I have had worse taxi rides, what a bit of luck to get him. As I sat in my new hoodie, I thought not for the first time what amazing stories people have to tell behind what you actually see, and how innovative to fit together such a varied and rewarding lifestyle. Another time, I’ll tell you about my last haircut and the hairdresser…