Last Saturday evening marked my first shift as a taxi driver since early August 1998. In the event I was covering for Crazy Uncle John, who had asked me if I’d pick up a license for doing so earlier in the year to help out when he wanted a night off. It’s not something I thought I’d ever go back to, but with the amount of debt I’ve amassed in the past year it seemed like a good way of earning some extra cash.
It was quite an alien feeling getting in the diesel with my change box again, but within an hour of starting I’d done just two hires and those eleven years dissolved with the once familiar feeling that it was going to be a long, arduous night behind the wheel. Fortunately it would pick up later on, and the nine or so hours in the car went by quite quickly with the highs and lows that come with driving those mean streets.
This morning I made the somewhat questionable decision to skateboard down the hill to work. I realised that I was running about five minutes late, meaning I was going to have to run a good 200 yards of the journey anyway, so a glance at my skateboard in the hall cupboard as I was putting on my coat was all the convincing I needed.
It’s been a weird 24 hours without water here in Helensburgh. At some point yesterday a water main at the far east end of town ruptured, cutting off supply to some 6000 homes.
Of course, the first we knew about it was when I got home and went to wash my hands to discover there was hardly any pressure there. This led to me wandering down to the kitchen and unwittingly draining away the last of what little we had in the tank in trying to investigate the problem.
Soon after that a neighbour stopped by to warn us of the bigger issue and advised that they were giving water away at a couple of places around the town. Fliss went off and picked up a six pack of two litre bottles, which we’ve used sparingly.