Last night I got a ride request from the Casino downtown for St. Bonaventure (in Olean, over 50 miles away). No problem. On the way back, I was hoping to find a rider to take me back to Buffalo to not make use the gas mileage on my own dime. Instead, I did get a hit in Ellicottville for a local ride (about 3.90 in my pocket). I decided to grab a donut at Tim Horton’s to assuage my guilt for using their restroom, then tinkered on my phone until 8pm to see if more people needed rides. At exactly that time a new ride request. I realized from conversations that pretty much no one was able to find an Uber and I was possibly the only driver in town.
Alternating between new riders being added to the queue and parking around while checking email, etc., I was there a few hours, put it out on Facebook to other drivers that it was busy and should come down, and then left without guilt after seeing at least one Uber/Lyft driver hustling.
It was a pleasant evening in a pleasant village I usually associate with Mer and I going to the Fall Festival and Pumpkinville. Didn’t make any serious bank, but a few generous tips and a clear, cool evening doing what I love — driving and meeting people. And my free jacket is on the way — one of those rides was my 1000th ride. But what I’m really proud of is my near-perfect rating of 4.97-5.0 these last months.
My car is getting older, and faster doing this. I can’t do it more than a year or two without expecting maintenance issues. But then I may quit if New York State insists I be a 20th Century cab employee instead of a 21st Century micropreneur in the crowdsourced sharing economy I believe in. And who knows … maybe I will do it less when my publishing company demands more time. But I wish I could do it, at least a little now and then, forever.