Monday, March 31, 2008

Salt and Pepper

Salt and Pepper holders who give big hugs.

Do you recognize the style?
This painting is done in the style of a very famous Irish artist.
Do you know his name?

Well my middle son is married into the best family on earth.

Wonderful music and much laughter.
A great time had by all.

A milestone has been passed in our great journey through life.
It is wonderful when so many people can come together for a happy occasion.

I have itchy feet now and am ready to be back at work.
The seat belt on the new car has 2 small cuts which would not pass the NCT,when I rang the local Toyota dealer he did not want to know.
"Thats an import its your problem"
Well my problem will be solved tomorrow but I will contact Toyota Japan to see if the dealers are not obliged to service the marque.
After all we all move through the EU,so I feel that they should be obliged, as part of their agency agreement to provide the service to any customer.

Back to getting another Taxi licence.
I rang a few people in the know and could not get a second hand plate.
I sent off a cheque for e6300.
I got it back and was told to make it payable to NCTS not the taxi regulator.

I wonder why the taxi regulator pays other companies to do the work of her office?
Every time I get a letter it comes from a different place(I get plenty of letters)

I now wait.

Last night it rained like the end of the world had come.
Floods all over today.
At least it keeps down the dust !

I am getting the seat belt from Traynors breakers yard near Moy in Co Armagh.

If you have read this story before forgive me for telling it again.

When I was starting to drive my dad asked me to drive with him up to this breakers yard.
My first big outing at the wheel, and we made the 40 or so miles without mishap.
My dad told Mr.Traynor that I was learning to drive and had driven up all the way without much assistance.
Mr Traynor called over someone to get the part for my dad.

"Now you come here with me"

Then I learned the lesson of my life.

He brought me through the wrecked cars showing me bent steering wheels and broken windscreens (smashed by heads) Then to see how the knees of victims went through the dashboard only to have their knees broken by a bracket which held the steering colum in place.

"A few seconds late and look at the mess, beautiful cars wrecked, worst of all is the loss of life" then to nail his point home he showed me a child's shoe and the blood on the roof cloth.
A family devastated.
"I am not doing this to frighten you son
Just take your time and be late if you must"

Millions spent in awareness campaigns would never have hammered home that lesson as well.

From time to time when someone is rushing past I let them at it, I will remember my morning at Traynor's breakers yard until I die.

Last time I was up there there was a beautiful TVR with a cracked windscreen and a broken passenger window.
They were breaking her up.
Driver had fallen asleep at the wheel and was thrown out the window to die.

"No one will ever drive that car again,thats how it works up here"
Said one of the lads.

There was a big Bentley parked outside the place with a great number.
T1N or T1N MAN something like that.

One of my mates told me a story of when he was at school he used to sit beside this young guy of 14 who loved stripping cars down.
The teacher one day said
"Look at the state of you, oil on your hands and the cut of your clothes, you are an absolute disgrace,you will amount to NOTHING, I don't know how you can come to school looking like that"

As the teacher turned away the young lad stood up and emptied his pockets.

"There you are 120 quid! thats what I made since I left school yesterday.

How much did you make"?

That was in the late 60s

That shut up the teacher for a few weeks.
The young lad still has more money than the teacher to this day as well.

The painting .
Sir John Lavery who once did the design on the old pound note.
Funny thing is that that painting was done by a direct decendant of his.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Down time

Statue at the Irish Life mall

A nice old Hillman

Lights camera action!

I hope my rest is coming to an end soon, I could rent a taxi but I need a few weeks off too.
A job would give me paid holidays and sick leave imagine that.
Well I have to take out the old pen and write a"chickens neck"(slang for check)to buy a brand new licence plate e6390.
Pity I could not get someone giving up their plate as there must be loads of people giving up the "trade".
When I rang the union they said that a widow might have a plate to sell if the taxi regulator could make a decision on the matter.
The licences which are not active will just lapse and not be renewable.

I think guys are holding on to them in case they become valuable again,some hope.

Come to think of it its a long time since we had a price increase.
Clearing out my desk I found that it cost me e70 to have my meter changed plus another e90 to have it verified by the "Weights and measures" guys, plus a day wasted.

I had my knuckles slapped the other day.
At the local supermarket as I was getting out of my car I noticed the Lexus SUV beside me had a deep cut in the side wall of the tyre.
I popped into the newsagents and got a piece of paper and put a note on the windshield.Coming back out of the newsagents I noticed she was reversing out so I went over to ask if she had seen the note.
Why would you be put a note on my windshield?.
You have a cut on your front tyre.
Someone has slashed my tyres!
No by the look of it you hit the curb reversing,just thought you should know.
She scowled at me and without a thank you or kiss my arse she drove off.

Well perhaps she will get her reward another time.
Those SUVs have quite high tyres and a blowout when cornering could give you a nice roll over and I don't mean like the Lotto roll over.

Another landmark this weekend our national broadcaster is stopping its transmissions on the medium wave.
I don't really know if all the stations which are now on that waveband will be lost.
My old car radio used to pick up radio Merseyside, Welsh radio and Manx radio(Isle of Man) it would be a pity if the whole waveband went.
While I was walking the dog there was a house clearence going on. An old bakalite valve radio on the skip. Medium wave and 2 short wave bands, one marked trawler band.
Here are a few names on the dial.
Luxembourg 11, Lille,Strasbourg 11,Hilversum 11,
Athlone,Istambul and Munich.
Remember in the 60s listening to radio Luxembourg and that old guy who would tell you how to win Littlewoods pools?
Farewell old friend.

In case you missed this in the Sunday Times last week.
Toyota Prius V BMW.
BMW won.
So I should be back on the road in a few weeks.
Happy Easter.

Here is something for the Italian readers seems like smoking was not his only bad habit.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Taxi plate wanted

The new monument beside Store St. Garda station.
"the shard beside the gards"

Press photographers wait to snap the latest e15million Lotto winner.

"Floridita" a little bit of Cuba in Dublin.

I am still looking for a taxi plate to buy from some one,no luck so far.
I will have to buy a new plate so.
It is a pity because taxi plates are set to become non transferable soon, so guys who were thinking of throwing in the towel will not even get back the price of their plate back.

If this new rule comes in a widow will not even have the dignity of getting back part of the money that her late husband paid out to become a taxi driver.

Non refundable payment.

Sad news of a taxi driver dying violently.

A young enough guy 31 stabbed to death in front of his partner and 2 year old kid.
A lot of this story has to come out yet,he was doing a freebie for someone he knew.
Latest is that they have caught the suspect.

Truth is that as I sit here I realize that NOT driving a taxi is not such a bad thing after all.
I know of taxi drivers who rob their passengers blind.
They don't complain to the regulator or to the Garda, but they tell me.

Then I say did you get a receipt? or did you get his roof sign number?

No they say.......But they think that all taxi drivers are robbers.

I see the Garda using foul language when they pull in a taxi, then ask for help from taxi drivers who may have been in the area who witnessed this or that.

It is no surprise to me to hear that a Garda was caught in a raid in relation to stolen vehicles last week.
I hear drug addicts tell me how they are robbed of cash and drugs by Garda on a regular basis."They just stop us and take the gear and our cash and go away"

That can't be right.

Wise up boys in blue.

The criminals are on both sides of the thin blue line.

You don't have to pick on guys dropping off a fare to fill up your penalty book.

Now we go to something different.

10 years ago or there abouts I was visiting a friend in Edgware near London we were flying out from Stanstead so I asked this old guy in a taxi rank how much it would cost for him to drive us and the price was OK.
So he said he would turn up at the appointed time.
When the appointed time came round he was there.

He was over 80 then and a cabby all his life.

His life story was rich in things that had happened in his life.
He told us about the D day landings at Normandy with his mate from Dublin, getting lost and wrapping themselves up in their ground sheets, only to be woken up the next morning with.
"Heres another 2 bodies over there"
They had landed after all the action in the dark, so with nothing to do had slept in a battlefield of dead bodies.
"A few hours earlier and we would have been sleeping with them forever."
He lived beside Covent Garden which had had a bomb alert on the day when we were going there.
The IRA were doing a lot of harm to the Irish at that time.
Lets call him Bob.
Bob had worked for Thames television in the 60s & 70s. His job to collect Bruce Forsyth, Bob Monkhouse and all the names of the day, including Tommy Cooper.
What a complex man.
Tommy Cooper was so shy, hated people looking at him. I had to tell his wife to turn on her clocks 20 mins. I would ring the landlord of his favorate pub to turn on his clock 20 mins as well. I was dragging him out to get to the studio.
In those days everything was live and I as the driver was responsible for having him there on time.
He told us of one time Tom went to New York to appear on the Ed Sullivan show.
On the way into New York he told his wife to go ahead to the hotel, he was going to Tannins magic shop and would meet her for dinner later.

When he was having coffee with his fellow magicians he confessed that he had made a mistake.
He had forgotten to ask his wife where they were staying.
So he slept on sofas of friends until he met his wife again at the TV studio 3 days later.

Typical of the man.

I think Bob went on to be the oldest cabby in London, he only worked out in the sticks because the traffic had become hell in central London.

Here is the clip of the fantastic landing in crosswinds. Watch how the left wing strikes the ground.

Parking can be hard. Imagine what it would be like if it was fun

I hope you didn't see that it had a link to a porn site!

Just one last request to slow down over the weekend

Happy Mardi Gras

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

March 18

One month old today and a big hit with the girls.
The new Irish

Ready to take his place in the big parade.

Well I worked all through from 7.30 am until stopping only for a cup of coffee.
The parade was a big hit with everyone who saw it.
Most people watched it on TV,though I did hear a figure of 180.000 lined the route, in freezing weather.
Lots of interesting people to meet and with the bank holiday rate all through I was glad to work.
Conversation stopper of the night was a girl who just said that her husband had just walked out on her one day!
What can you say?
People are so different, even from hour to hour they change.
It is a very hurtful thing to put your trust in someone and then to have your bank account emptied and they walk off.
Thank God for the law, perhaps a settlement would ease the pain.
Think of Heather Mills. (take your name back Paul)
Paul found it easy to fall in love because he had spent many good years with Linda.

There are always sharks swimming in the sea and Jackals on dry land, so be careful out there.

I found a diamond in the back of the taxi,thought it was glass almost sure it is real. I will bring it in somewhere to have it checked, here's hoping.

I was working so hard it was not funny, Garda out in force stopping guys for drink driving.
While in Finglas youths were stealing cars and crashing them and setting them on fire.
Then when they had run out of robbed cars they started hijacking cars.
The Garda did little or nothing to stop them.
I would not be telling a lie by saying that there was 200 Garda doing breathalisers.

It is easier to prosecute an honest person than stop a criminal.

Story going round of a man in Australia who rang the police to report a guy breaking into his shed,"your shed, not your house" came the reply from the police.
"I suggest you just pull the curtains and go to bed we have no car available"

So the old guy waits 3 minutes and rings them back.
I delt with that intruder myself.
I shot him three times, hes dead.

This got an instant response.
Swat team heliicopters and police cars everywhere.
"the old geezer just said. "thought you didn't have the manpower"

They did catch the guy in the shed though.
They are both due in court.

Next time I will tell you of a guy 80+ who drove us from Edgware to Stanstead
he was a diamond kind of person.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

St.Patrick's day

Well Happy St.Patrick's day to you all.
Its a great video, so well cut.
Here's another one with a bit of a Jig.

One place to celebrate St.Patrick's day used to be Montserrat in the west Indies,they have a harp on their flag and a lot of the people have Irish names.
No hail showers there! But they did have a problem in 1995.
The volcano blew up and two thirds of the people had to leave.
Strong links to Ireland and slavery an interesting place.
Irish were exported as slaves as well as black people.

By the way St.Patrick was a slave captured from Wales by the Irish.

Look I have managed to get the loan of a car for the big day so once again I will be reporting from the front line.

Will I WON'T I.
The purchase of maritime insurance used to be up to the customer buying from Japan until events changed our policy. Insurance is now mandatory and included in all FOB and CIF prices. The events that led to this change were:

* November 2002, the Hual Europe, a car carrier loaded with more than 5,000 vehicles worth over US$80 million, ran aground in Tokyo Bay and then caught fire on November 26, 2002 resulting in a total loss of all cargo.

* Not long after, in December 14 of the same year, the Tricolor, a Norwegian car carrier sank in the English Channel after colliding with a container ship. Its cargo of BMWs, Saabs, and Volvos is estimated at around £70 million.

* Two years later, on May 23, 2004, the car carrier MV Hyundai No 105 sank outside Singapore after colliding with an oil tanker. The MV Hyundai No 105 was carrying 4,190 South Korean and Japanese cars worth over $81 million.

We believe it is in our customers' best interest to insure all vehicles leaving Japan.

Well this might surprise you.



I always think it is so stupid to stand out in the rain or the road or outside the court house on the road to report a news story. This is why - Watch more free videos

This guy is so opinionated that he must be a taxi driver.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Retirement ?

Sea defenses in Clontarf

Just as well they were not needed.

This is an A1 information sheet from the TAXI REGULATOR.

All the stuff she sends out is larger than life and costs a fortune to print.
I think I got 3 booklets and loads of other stuff.
But we haven't had a pay rise in quite a while!

I have sold my taxi.

Yesterday I got a piece of paper and a new man drives my taxi.
I hope it will be as lucky for him as it was for me.

I have been looking through the other blogs and here is something from Bob

I have never seen an instructive video as good as this.
Tells you what you want to know,
How to get it
Manners at the rank.
Your rights and

Tip the driver,

So the big storm passed a lot of people on the seafront can breathe again for another few years.

We got a thank you card from someone who died young recently.
A Happy message
"I have been made rich beyond my wildest dreams through the many friends I have had.
The love and happyness that you give to me in my life has made me richer than any man.

The Yanks are coming!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Taxi going

My good old taxi

Called the wall of fame in Temple Bar.

Fire in the port tunnel.
Action plan swings into force traffic almost stopped for hours and hours.
Had a run into town with a very nice French girl who is living in Barcelona.
Reminded her of home someone always on strike and stopping the traffic.

Well big news today.

I sold my taxi !.

Licence meter and car.

So from Friday I will be a civilian.

But not for long.

I have this beautiful Prius and the computer is all in Japanese I am going to meet a guy who spent 7 years in Japan and we are going to look through the manuals and convert her.

The Prius has voice activated Sat Nav. I turned it on and a Japanese voice said

"Where to boss?"

"Ronanstown in Tallagh please"

"No no boss you no wan go dere, I take you to Ranelagh instead"


Lots of things to get sorted.

How do you complain?

When I was in Blackpool I asked some taxi drivers if there was a good Indian restaurant close by.
"Yes indeed mate the Akash on Topping St".
When I took the menu and saw some of the pages were stuck together with food.

I should have left there and then.

I said it to the waiter but he said that "We are very busy".
3 tables occupied.
Gordon Ramsey would have had a great rant.
While I was waiting some other people asked for a damp cloth so they could clean the sticky stuff from their hands.
The outside of their menu was dirty too.

I was not the only moron there that day.

A lot of time passed and the waiters changed.

The new guy when he was walking past twice put his hand on my shoulder and said
"It'l be ready in a minute, mate"
Strike 2 I should have said
"If you put your hand on my back again I will deck you, mate."

Next When it came eventually it was stone cold,the rice was as cold as from a fridge and the meat dish was not even lukewarm.
I called him over and asked if this was a joke?
The plate was stone cold and there he was going round with cloths on his hands.

Any normal person would have left.....Not muggins.

I let him heat it up to lukewarm and ate it without a murmer..

Guess what .

I did get food poisoning but not too bad.
It was only at one end.

I don't have to guess why they call it the runs.

All the clues were there to warn me.

Just goes to show I can never learn

Remember the rubiks cube? here is a super one being solved.
So many people tell me they have never seen Curb Your Enthusiasm that I had to provide a link.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Ireland defeated

Stars of Blackpool.

Sections of a giant propeller wait at the docks like giant butterflies.

Well the Welsh have been and gone and they were very well behaved.
One little thing happened which shows you how annoying things can be when people take drink..
I was off to the airport just before chucking out time and stopped for petrol.

Decided on Burger King as I was a bit peckesh.

4 Welsh supporters walked through the drive through behind me.
After they had placed their order they asked me if I could drive them back down the hill to their hotel? Ok so, hop in while you are waiting as it was cold.
A bit of banter and a good bit of time later and I drove them down to the hotel.

I had told them that I wouldn't start the meter.

Just give me e5.

"Fuck it mate thats a bit steep.

Don't pay him. shouted another.

Take his fucking drink said another."

Thing is that from the moment of hire it costs e4.10 at night plus e3 for the other 3 passengers thats e7.10 and with the time and distance they might have been looking at e10.
2 other people were getting in as they were getting out.
So off into town where one after another they were in and out.

At around 11.15 I picked up a young guy "I am going to the local GAA club to pick up someone then on further. I need to get some credit first".
So I headed to the late night Spar in Sandymount, it was shut then on the coast road to the petrol station, they told him they had "Closed the terminal"which is a bit stupid.

Look mate I will zero the meter and we will go back to Irishtown where I started the meter again and drove up to the Spar on London bridge road.
Hurray he got the credit.
Then he rang his sister to tell her he would be there in a minute. Then he rang to tell her he was there. Then he went inside to find her.
Why he could not have just walked straight into the bar in in the first place, without getting the credit is beyond me.

There was around e13 on the meter and he gave me e20.
Keep the change ,very few drivers would have canceled the meter like you did back there.
It is a sad fact of the times we live in that you will never pass over your phone to anyone to make a call.
I gave the phone to a drunken cow one night, feeling she would respect my trust.
But I noticed she was dialing a heck of a lot of digits. So I stopped the car and took the phone off her. When I looked at the display 00 1 212 ********** Thats New York !
So I gave her a bit of a telling off to which I received the comment.

"You're not a very nice taxi driver."

Too bloody right I'm not.

The hotels,pubs and restaurants have full bank accounts now as they gear up for St.Patrick's day
Yes it will be a great day for the Irish.

Here is an ad where you wonder up to the last minute what some of them are selling?

The ins and outs, the ups and downs its a bizzy weekend.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Welsh visitors

Here are the footprints of King George the 1V, carved in stone on Howth pier.

The Howth harbor lighthouse a welcome sight in a storm
Howth village and Howth head are well worth a visit if it is a sunny day.

Girl gets into the taxi on the Howth Road.
Chancery Place please I am going to the motor taxation office.
Well no its on Queen St now.

So Queen St it is so.

Then her story unfolded, it is one that explains how if one thing is overlooked it can snowball out of control very quickly.

She bought a car and she arranged insurance and paid the first part of the premium.
The insurance company asked her to apply for her driving test and send her provisional licence to them along with the letter from the driver testing center saying she had applied for the driving test.
All well and good until she could not find her licence.
She looked high and low so in the end she rang the insurance company saying that she was applying for a duplicate licence.

All well and good.

She sent in the forms and photos to the motor tax office with the fee.
Sorry you seem to be squinting at the camera, send us another photo.
Sorry you have a shadow under you chin in this one, try again.
The one after that failed too.
So she put it on the long finger.

Then she was stopped by a Garda and asked to produce her insurance cert and driving licence etc.. She explained what the problem was to the Garda.
But when she rang then the insurance company refused to give her a letter proving she was insured but they said NO as she had not sent them her licence etc.
But they took the money quick enough in the first place.

She has sold the car,not worth the bother and now she had to make a court appearance the next day.
"I asked a solicitor to plead my case and he told me it would cost e 1,000 to represent me.So I will keep my money to pay whatever fine they give me."

Yes you can find yourself in trouble if you don't look after the little things.

Later on I got a fare out to Clare Hall and hopped out to the airport.
Got into the Kesh (shot for Long Kesh another detention center)
In for a cup of tea and then the Tannoy shouts out "All cars to the rank, no delays"

The cars start to move and what do you know.
There are 2 airport Garda waving us through and no traffic lights,
This is a first for me.
It often takes 15 mins to reach the rank from the Kesh.

Happy days and well done DAA for using your brains.

Later on I got a fare to the port, bit of banter going down there,its not the easiest of places to get into now as a few signs are wrong and another few are missing.
Must show you a few of the worst examples.
This is as a result of Irish planning.

The high speed ferry comes in and shoots out again in 25 mins so time for another cup of tea and while I was waiting other passengers were arriving.
A girl in a small white van comes in and brings her dog over to the grass to attend to nature a small Springer Spaniel blueish in color, this might be the biggest earner in Ireland,sniffer dogs at the airport have found tonnes of drugs.
So he goes into the terminal building he starts wagging his tail like mad.
Goes up to this one and that one. sniff sniff.
Then BINGO he jumps on to a bag and dances the TANGO on a bag.

Poor young lad called over hands shaking, shows the customs officer a pea sized piece of hash. the now 3 customs officers surround him tell him how we is a very naughty boy while the dog goes off into arrivals out of sight.

After 5 mins the dog comes trotting out like a Hackney Horse holding his reward in his mouth.
This dog may be the one who has found millions of euro worth of drugs recently.

The Welsh stream out and off I go to Fairview e14.
The lads were in great form and as I write they have won 16/12.

Should be busy tonight.

Well what do you think of this?Did you ever think it would end like that.
If it goes blank click on the white bit where it should be and it will come up.
Its well worth seeing.