Travelling in taxis can provide a rich harvest of experiences from the Londoner with “the knowledge”, that wonderful neck-top database of every street in that city you can think of, to the Sydney driver who had to first turn away from his passenger’s destination so that he could approach from the harbour bridge since that was the only way he knew how to get there.
The taxi industry in many cities is being shaken to its roots by Uber, a web-based service that leaves out the middlemen but whether you, the passenger, choose Uber or the more traditional services, nothing is worse than climbing into a vehicle that is driven buy a rude and hostile individual who has not taken the trouble to clean himself or the car from which he is conducting his business.
My worst experience was in Paris where I hailed a taxi to Charles De Gaulle airport at about 5 a.m. one morning. The driver bore evidence of having eaten many cloves of very pungent garlic while his enormous dog, occupying the front passenger seat presumably for security purposes, was unable or unwilling to stop itself emitting the most foul gas.
The trials and tribulations of travelling in taxis must surely provide for many similar experiences to mine.
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