Confessions of a Part-time Hack

Anthony S.

I did some part time cab driving a few years ago to earn some extra cash when I was between jobs.

One fare stands out in my mind – I was asked to pick a couple up and take them to the maternity hospital. When I arrived at the house, the husband was in a blue panic, and the wife was lying on the floor like a beached whale, moaning in pain from the contractions.

After establishing that it was their first child, I realized that the birth would likely take quite a while; so I just calmed them both down and after about 15 minutes, managed to get the lady up on her feet and eventually, got her to the car. I then had to send her husband back (twice!) for her things which had been packed ready.

I took the journey quite slow, through the back streets so that I avoided any hold ups etc. At one point she grabbed my hand and refused to let go – quite interesting trying to drive, change gear, indicate, answer the radio, and calm two totally hysterical people with one good hand and one that is turning purple from the death grip employed.

When we finally reached the maternity hospital, I’d managed to calm her down sufficiently to let me have my hand back – I then went in to talk to the nurses. They took out a wheelchair and with a little effort, I managed to help the lady into it and the nurses took her into the ward. I then had to find a second wheelchair as her husband had passed out on the back seat. However, when I tried to take him in, they wouldn’t let me and told me to take him to the A & E round the corner!

The following day, I decided to drop by and see how things had gone – the baby (boy, 6lb something) had been born about 12 hours later. The A & E and given the husband something to calm him down, and he had actually made back to the maternity unit in time for the birth.

(Oh – and after some gentle hinting, he realized that he hadn’t paid the fare!)

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