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Best Short Stories
The Cab Ride Part 1

The Cab Ride Part 1 | 2

 

Twenty years ago, I drove a cab for a living. It was a cowboy's life, a life for someone who wanted no boss. What I didn't realize was that it was also a ministry. As I drove the night shift, my cab became a moving confessional. Passengers climbed in, sat behind me in total anonymity and told me about their lives. I encountered people whose lives amazed me, ennobled me and some made me laugh and weep.

However, none touched me more than a woman I picked up late one August night.

I was responding to a call from a small brick fourplex in a quiet part of town. I assumed I was being sent to pick up some partiers, or someone who just had a fight with a lover, or a worker heading to an early shift at some factory in the industrial part of town.

When I arrived at 2.30 a.m., the building was dark except for a single light in the ground floor window. Under these circumstances, many drivers would just honk once or twice, wait a minute and then drive away. Nevertheless, I had seen too many impoverished people who depended on taxis as their only means of transportation. Unless a situation smelled of danger, I will always go to the door.
“This passenger might be someone who needs my assistance.” I reasoned to myself.
Hence, I walked to the door and knocked.

(Read Related : Inspirational Story)

"Just a minute." Answered a frail, elderly voice.
I could hear something being dragged across the floor. The door opened after a long pause. A small woman in her eighties stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it. She looked like she came out of a 1940s movie. There was a small nylon suitcase by her side. The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets. There were no clocks on the walls and no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. There was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware in the corner.

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"Would you carry my bag out to the car?" She said.
I took the suitcase to the cab and then returned to assist the woman. She took my arm and we walked slowly towards the cab. She kept thanking me for my kindness.
"It's nothing." I told her.
"I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother to be treated."
"Oh, you're such a good boy." She said.
When we got into the cab, she gave me an address and asked, "Could you drive through downtown?"
"It's not the shortest way." I answered quickly.
"Oh, I don't mind." She said.
"I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice".

The Cab Ride Part 1 | 2

 

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