I dropped off the coolest couple I've ever had in my cab at the 'port this a.m., they were on their way to Mexico for vacation (HI!!!) and I got sent to the Holiday Inn just off Airport Way. An incredibly short run, but as we all know, sometimes tips can make up for the lack of distance. But apparently, not in this case. :o( On the screen where it gives us the pertinent info it says "No tipping allowed". Kid you not. What fun is there in that for me? None. Except I'm in a pretty damned good mood due to the other couple so I just shrug and drive on. Luck of the draw in our biz.
So I get to the hotel and there's a security guard from the hotel escorting these 4 young men (they're all 18-20) to my cab. He fills out the account slip, gives me directions to the airport (as if I'm not a driving a cab :o) and tells me to make sure the fellas make it into the 'port ok.
Me: Um. So, you want lil ol' me to forcibly insure that these 4 strapping young men make it to their plane eh? What if I hurt one of 'em. they were all big boys, fyi.
He: Ummm. Well, just go straight there. K?
Me: Oh sure, it's only 5a and the strip joints don't open until 7a anyway.
He just kinda looked at me like I was an idiot and the guys in the back were snickering.
We took off. It was a really quiet ride. None of them saying much at all. I tried to start a conversation but no luck. So I just pretty much rattled off some one liners til we almost got to the 'port. It's a quick ride - 5 minutes. As we're sitting at the light at 82nd/Airport Way I just gotta say something.
Me: So... you fellas quiet 'cuz it's so early in the morning or you scared of women drivers?
They all kinda snickered but didn't say anything. We get to the port and I get out and pop the trunk for the fellas to get their stuff. As I'm walking to the trunk I try one more time.
Me: All right. You fellas are officially the quietest ride I've ever had in my car. You'd almost think you fellas were off to the war or something like that.
They just sorta smile at me. I open the trunk and look at the luggage; they're all carrying tiny little Army backpacks. I just kinda looked at 'em.
Me: Um. I guess you ARE off to war hey? I'm sorry fellas, don't mean to make fun.
They smile for me but you can tell they're not too excited, and have, I would imagine, quite a bit on their minds.
As each one grabs their packs I shake each and every one of their hands.
Me: Thank you guys. Really. For being brave enough to go and protect our country. They all shake my hand but look at me kinda funny. Trust me fellas, you aren't going to get enough people telling you thank you. No matter how many times it's said. Take care.
They just kinda shook their heads and walked off into the 'port. I sincerely hope some day they don't have occasion to remember this.