When driving the cab, so much happens, over so much time, it often blends together in a mush, and eventually, you do it all over again another day.
In my dream: I'm in Brooklyn. My mind creates an entire neighborhood with the streets of Fort Greene and the buildings of Brooklyn Heights.
I’m driving two women home, for some reason I sit facing my passengers, my back to the steering wheel and the street ahead. Every time they tell me "left" or "right" I have to re-think the turn, steering the wheel with my back to it, with one hand.
"Make a left," they say, I make a left onto a small street, my body still facing backward as I spin the steering wheel across my palm and fingers. "Are you sure you can handle this?" one asks.
"Sure,” I say. I follow her eyes, which seem very concerned, so much so that if they could, they would drive for me. She holds her attention to a big tree with roots growing through the sidewalk and overtaking the street. I turn my head around to see the tree, but the turn is too tight. I turn my wheel as far as possible, but a tire gets squeezed between the street, the tree's roots, and the sidewalk. The tire pops, and deflates.
This was going to be my last customer, as I had been driving for more than 10 hours. Without a spare tire in the trunk I wondered how quickly the garage would be able to send someone to change my tire.
I drop the women off, at the corner of a housing complex driveway and several well-kept brownstones. They didn’t have cash and were going to get the money, all 24 dollars of it.
Another cabbie stops at the corner and dropped someone off too. He is very nice. He tells me I should expect them not to return, and speaks of all the times people have not paid him the fare. I "Cannot just let them walk away from me," he says. He tells me he'll help changing the tire. We decide to change the tire, rather than wait for the garage, but we shoot the shit some more. My engine is off; I left the keys, all of them, on my pillow, on my seat. Just then a team of guys in their mid-twenties approaches my taxi and before I can say anything they are all piling in. One even gets in the front. What's more, another looks in the driver door, gets in, turns on the engine, and revs it furiously. I run as fast as I can after my everything.
My dream changes the scenario; I am still running, in Riverdale, up and down the hills past car dealerships in route to Grand Concourse. The tire wasn't flat anymore. I call the police, with only a trip sheet in hand to tell me the license plate number. The car is due back at the garage in 15 minutes. The police hang up after I say the word "taxi"
Then I wake up... phew all a dream.
Still I figure I'll take that sunday off.