So what is it about taxis? 2012 has been a good year for us…except for taxis! The general assumption when hailing a cab is that the driver:
Has a license to drive his (her) taxi
Is a local person who knows the area
Is an honest person not ready to take you to Tim Buck Two (spelling?)
Can at least understand sign language
Can read a map!
Well it happened again. We flew into Long Beach Airport (which has a beautiful new terminal) and hailed a cab to take us to the “World Cruise Terminal” to catch our cruise ship.
We weren’t particularly fond of the $45 flat rate. Now if you have any knowledge of Long Beach, you know that San Pedro is a major shipping (as in ocean) center. It is also the destination and departure for hundreds of cruise ships every year.
This seemed to have eluded our taxi driver in the day, week, month that he had been a taxi driver. Training? NO Written test for local knowledge? NO Can speak English (well we lucked out on this one. He did speak English).
It seems he needed an address to put into his GPS! Well, now we know why he was hired to drive a cab. He new the local language AND knew hoe to operated a GPS.
Luckily, we were not in a hurry. It took him nearly five minutes to:
Ask us for an address (of the friggin’ WORLD CRUISE TERMINAL FGSakes!)
So I pull out my trusty Iphone and search the internet FOR HIM! ARG…
Input the address (which is in a community called Wilmington, California for cryin’ out loud)
Of course he is trying to enter the address while he is driving down the road. So I have to ask him to pull over while he fiddles with his GPS. Again, lucky for us the traffic around Long Beach Airport is light!
FINALY he has it programmed and we are ready to go.
Now, mind you, the meter is running all the while he is doing this. At this point, I didn’t trust his initial cost estimate of $45 flat. I make a mental not that if he charges us more than $45, I would complain that it took him $3.73 worth of wait time to program his damn GPS!
Well, the gods were on our side. When we finally arrived, we only had to pay $45. Lucky us, huh? Zenetta paid the tab, and would you believe it, gave him a 15% tip to boot!
What a wonderful world we live in, eh! (The “eh” is for our Canadian friends). Later…