You tube has banned the other versions of this for some reason.
The big day has arrived for sure.
Among all the bad news in the paper came a piece of great news about a passenger from way back.
Orla Tinsley got into the taxi and she was breathless. I asked her if she had asthma.
She told me that she had Cystic fibrosis. She was a campaigner and they had raised up money for an isolation ward so that CF patients would not pick up infections from others in the hospital.
Sadly the hospital had taken over the unit and she was really angry about it.
She got her double lung transplant in New York after the hospital rejected 6 donors which were not a match.
She raised $86,000 to cover some of her costs on the internet by crowd funding.
I the article I read that she recalled a kind taxi driver once understood her plight brought her to hospital and refused the taxi fare.
Sometimes a small gesture will go far.
She is a great fighter and I wish her a great 2018
The crib was removed from a Dublin in case it might offend a minor religion.
A story about a refugee family who couldn't find a place to stay, then they had a baby who turned out to be a great leader and savior to many.
In my local pub. Barman presses button and a taxi appears.
Every car should carry a plugging kit for punctures, pressure gauges and a good extendable wheel brace.
My wife was going to visit the grandchildren so I checked the oil the water and the tyres.
The front right tyre was 17psi where it should have been a lot more.
So I took off the wheel and found a small nail in the tyre. It might hold if I blew it up but the professional way is to plug it.. A plug kit costs around €30 and it fixes around 20 flats.
Above you see 2 pressure gauges of different makes just to check that one is right.
Anyhow the nail in the wheel was so small, but just big enough to cause you heartache.
Still it is fixed now so no more worries.
Guys sneezing behind me and over me has me busted at last...
I have to take some time off... Now how could I ? , if I don't stop now perhaps resting won't be an option.
One of the guys at the ferry the other day told me that he was just back from his uncles funeral.
His uncle was a taxi driver 68 years old parked at Crowes pub opposite the RDS. A taxi pulled up beside him pulling up in front of the waiting taxis so he shouted at him to Fuck off and join the back of the rank. The driver got out and punched him on the side of the head and drove off. He thought no more of it at the time. Three weeks later his uncle collapsed at the wheel and went into a coma.
Three years later he died at 68, the other guy was never traced.
So you see folks don't confront assholes.
Shane McGowan reached 60, for him it is quite an achievement.
The Canadians are great at exposing this kind of thing. The first book that I bought for my Kindle was called Dirty little secrets that garages use to rip you off.
Everyone is off for the Christmas break.
Not only for Christmas but for ever in some cases.
Rents are high and people have found out when they pay for rent and food plus transport that there is not much left for living.
So they are voting with their feet.
C'est La Vie as they say.
One couple with their 6 month baby off to France the mother is Polish so the grandparents will be over the moon.
Another guy from South Korea after 3 years he is off home again where he hopes to open a Korean restaurant.
There were others but I will have to buy a note book to keep up.
One couple going to London. The lady was from Barcelona and talked most of the way to the airport on the phone.
I talked to her partner about this and that and then I got on to the subject of the most remarkable person I ever met. Chuck Feeney and the guy really lit up
"I work for him"
Then we became like two fans going to see their biggest idol of all time.
Chuck Feeney made and gave away a fortune of 8 Billion dollars and when I win the Euromillions on Friday he will help me to invest it wisely.
One woman that sticks in my craw like a chicken bone.
I picked her up at the ferry going to Willow Park Rd. and she questioned every turn of the road.
At the Autoban pub she asked me to turn off early and then she insisted that the numbers were going up so therefore I was going the wrong way.
Finally I told her that we were at 63 and now we are at 95 so now we are going the wrong way,
So we went back among protests then after 3 more"your wrongs"
There it was.
My wife is very wise.
"She may have been on the move since 6Am perhaps she is not well.
You have to see things from their side too.
On this day December 8 2008 the news arrived of John Lennons death. I was working in the international telephone exchange at the time and other operators in the know started waking up their press contacts to spread the news.
1980 was a tough era for war and the same thing is going on now.
A converted bus brings tea and hot food to the homeless
Finding a dry place to sleep is a big bonus
Thank God Turkeys are just for Christmas
Wow and thank God that the doctor in the other posting just walked into her mothers house safe and well. She had been in hospital as a patient and had bad news coming , her mind must have flipped.
Thank God again she is at home with the people who love her. I hope the future is kind to her.
The other day I picked a girl up in Kilmanham going to Coolock.
"Right I said down by the quays?"
No No No she directed me out to the M50 and over to the Malahide Rd.
She seemed to think that I didn't know the way.
Adding €20 extra to the journey by going her way.
I would never go the M50 It adds miles to the trip and if there is a problem you could be stuck there for ever.
Only Sat Navs bring you that way.
I had a guy from Way up North from Alaska the land of polar bears and fishing.
Did you ever see the TV series Deadliest catch?
Well my lad David stops trawler men going aboard and gives them random drugs and alcohol tests.
A good idea.
He spent the weekend here bringing food to the homeless in the streets of Dublin.
He was a good Christian kind of guy. He really was happy to help.
We have hundreds of people sleeping rough in Dublin.
4 deaths in the last few weeks.
Our government are riding the gravy train and do not give a shit about what is happening to the people who elected them.
No not many people know but the leading country that reads my blog is Norway. !!!
The other day I had 3 Norwegian ladys to the airport. I told them about the blog and they said that they would look me up.
When we arrived at the airport one of them gave me all her €uro change "WE won't be needing this again" Then the last girl gave me the warmest hug ever.
"This has been the best taxi trip ever"
This is not the usual missing person.
She is a doctor with 2 small children.
Look around for her, I cannot even imagine what has happened.
So a girl came up to me when I was on the Old Burlington rank and asked me where the Wexford bus stop was? I didn't know and I asked the 3 other taxis on the rank.
The bus was coming so I told her that I would bring her to the next bus stop at UCD.
"But I can't afford to pay you"
Look I said. Just pass it on, make the world a better place.
So as we stopped there the Wexford bus pulled up behind us and out she hopped.
If she had walked back she would have missed it.
The photo shows where the bus stop was on Leeson St...
Now we all know
You would not believe I had the luckiest 24 hours !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Whether it was because of my good deed or not is for another day.
Just popping around minding my own business when every parents worst nightmare got into the taxi.
A dug addict!
So you play it by ear, this girl was tripping all the time, talking to herself.
She was tall enough and still had flesh on her bones, teeth rotten from the methadone, talking on and on. "Left here, right there" She brought me up to the flats area of the Coomb, she went to a house and knocked on the door just as the next door neighbor came out, the look of disgust from the people next door said it all. Her brother or who ever came to the door and the expression he gave her said volumes in his looks and silence, then he told her to "Fuck off.".
She was talking all the time barely conscious.. Her eyes going out of focus and opening again.
Don't take it up the wrong way, she could be any of our children.
I just hope this never happens to you or anyone belonging to you.
When she got out she just slammed the door without paying and when I looked down later there was €5 in the cup holder. I know she didn't mean to leave it but it was better €5 for the €9 fair than nothing at all.
She would have seen drugs as she grew up, it's not like she didn't know what would happen to her.
The dealer saw his chance an converted her to the ranks of the living dead.
Still I had other normal people from Boston who made up for it all, even though I brought them to the wrong Hertz car hire!!!!
I have a friend who is a taxi driver.
When I see him he says "I think how would my day have turned out if I had turned left instead of right?"
There is a movie called Sliding doors that explores the scenario in great detail.
For myself I take the cards as they come and try to work it all out.
The guy got in on O'Connell St and said Finglas.
As we motored along I said "Is it the village?"
Beside Cappagh hospital he said.
Then we had to ask Mr.Google.
When we arrived he gave me €20 "Wait"
Every taxi driver knows that this is a drug deal going down.
So I turned around and killed the engine and waited.
The security was like a military operation, first of all 2 guys came up.
Then one went away.
Then a car drove past at speed and another third car made the drop.
He came over and got in. "Right back to the conference center"
You know there is no point in preaching the gospel to him. he has sold his soul and there is no point in taking a bullet in the back of the head from him.
Fuck him I hope he will die screaming for mercy! The mystery carries on
So today I took the day off, I got my hair cut, walked over to the Merrion hotel to congratulate the concierge on becoming the best hotel in Dublin Then over to the MyTaxi HQ with a letter from a very unhappy customer.. She was a nutcase,she even stole my pen. "let me out on the corner" 20 yards further on than a group of people heading for the airport.I circled the block, but they were gone. The message she gave me read "Ring me at 8pm Thursday" Some hope of that happening.
Boys and girls a lot of shops have closed down in the last year or so, With soaring rents and wages places are going by the hour.
Bewleys cafe on Grafton St has re opened I went there for coffee, A girl asked me if I was looking to be seated. I said no, a take away. Then she pointed me to the counter where a guy was buying sticky buns, the choice went on and on. Decision made the guy looked at me. "I'll be with you in a moment" and he spent forever putting the buns into a box. Then it was my turn. He took the money and told me to stand at the end of the counter. There was a supervisor type of person there and I asked her if I could had made my order at this end of the counter instead of joining the other queue. Yes that is the way its done, Bit the other girl made me join the queue for cakes and wasted 8 minutes. Even at that the guy knew I only wanted coffee to go, he had asked me. He could have pressed the button before he loaded up the cake order. She didn't understand me.
This place just closed its doors without notice a few weeks ago, a great shop it was.
Irelands biggest Hippocrate, caught hiving money off-shore to avoid tax,
Big guns at the imperial war meusium
30 years since the Enniskillen bombing click here.
Just people remembering those who sacrificed their lives to defeat Hitler and defend freedom.
It is strange how people kill innocent people in the name of their special cause.
The wisdom of it all defies logic.
Whether its in Boston.,Belfast or Beirut.
When you come to stay for a while to visit Ireland you have to prove that you can support yourself for the duration of your stay.
The poor guy that I picked up from Uruguay had come to stay for a few months.
He was moving his base so I popped the seats forward and loaded up all his gear.
He had a tale of woe for sure.
The powers that be want to see real money that you can support yourself during your stay, so he had withdrawn several thousand €uro in cash to show them.
Now it is not easy to open a bank account so he had the cash on him. He was robbed, all the money taken.
When we were going over to his new place I noticed that my phone was gone, he rang it for me NO REPLY...So after I dropped him off I retraced my steps, no luck. Then when I got home my wife was talking to her friend in America on Skype. I had left it on the table before I left.
Normally I would give him that ride on the house to let him see that there are a few good people around.
Often I stop to tell tourists not to talk on the street with their phone in outstretched hands.
12,000 phones are stolen in Dublin every year !!! They think I am mad and they just carry on.
A few months ago I thought how it might be to loose my own fone. I bought a second hand one and had everything backed up ready to go. Not a bad idea at all
If I thought of half the things that happens, or a quarter of the things I am thinking about this blog would span volumes. So if you are the really cute Brazilian girl. Or the nurse from the Philippians, Or that really tall French girl. Or even that funny Greek guy You are all remembered in my prayers
Tail of a WW2 German plane, with lots of hits to its credit
An early Google mapping bicycle
Natural history meusum London
So there I was at the ferry and a guy walks up to me. "Do you take credit cards?
So I want you to take me to Maynooth."
We had to negotiate with the taxi in front of me.
He was first car so he demanded the job.
Four times we asked him if he took credit cards?
Then he has to come with me.
God but he was an interesting man. He had worked all over the world, involved in positioning oil rigs and drilling platforms, a really clever guy.
During the conversation we spoke about drugs and I told him the drug story I told to Stephen Speilburgh.
Shocking as that story is he topped it.
"My daughter was 16 years old and a rebel, she went to a party and got drunk, while she was in a drunken stupor a drug dealer picked her out and injected her with Heroin, then he raped her and made her pregnant. Her child was the most beautiful person I ever met in my life.
My daughters pain lasted for another 10 years.
Living as a drug addict she overdosed.
I see drugs progress and change and get a bigger grip on humanity.
In the bush kids get hooked on ICE they go from normal people to being robbing prostitutes in a few weeks.
I hope I am wrong but I see an epidemic of drugs wiping out whole continents in the near future"
I hope he is wrong too but society is hollow.
There is very little wholesome thought going on in peoples minds, little loving care happening.
Well I hope we are both wrong. We will see.
Perhaps Mr.President will solve all our problems one way or another.
I am really a simple man, good food, good company, great music and I am happy.
If there is wonderful dancing I am more than happy.
There is an Argentinian tango festival coming to Dublin.http://www.dublintango.com/Click here for details
Look at this for wonderful ease of movement a pure joy to see
Today we had a huge funeral in Clontarf for our 19 year old suicide victim.
All the whys? have been put away as there is no logical solution to what happened.. You could say it is a permanent solution to a temporary problem. All his friends turned up in their hundreds, a very popular boy. Now gone from their company,
God bless you lad may you find peace.
So about work! The train workers are on strike and it was very briefly mentioned on the radio, foreign people don't listen to the Irish news so they were caught on the hop. I managed to pick up 4 different people going in the same direction, as usual they started to argue about how much each person must pay in the end. Not fun for sure. But you can only do one job at a time and the traffic was crap so I gave up early.
A Welsh man off the ferry and I spoke to him about how proud the Welsh are of their language. He told me that on the island of Angelsey more than 90% of the people speak Welsh every day. He also told me that the schools use only Welsh up to the age of 12 years. Then English is introduced. He also told me that in parts of Argentina and Patagonia Welsh is widely spoken.. The poor old Irish language has taken a hammering and is almost gone,
Look at this
The Welsh national anthem is very rousing.
Here is another brilliant safety message from Wales
I have been looking for a line from "View from under a bridge by Arthur Miller" Its something like a word spoken without thought will take wings. Those words can never be taken back, But I bought the play on Amazon and I will look for it.
I bounce around day to day not really thinking about tomorrow until something happens that brings you down to earth with a bang.
On Halloween night a young 19 year old lad hung himself from a tree at the back of his house.
19 is an awkward age, his girlfriend had broken up with him and he snapped.
All the questions why ? why ? why ? In Gods name.
He was on life support for a few days and when it was switched off his organs were harvested.
Some small good for others.
So switch off the computer, the telly, the tablet and the mobile.
I am not saying that he was being bullied on social media, but some kids are unbelievably cruel.
In the USA a 20 year old Michelle Carter was sent to prison for encouraging her x boyfriend to kill himself. A spoiled selfish bitch, the look on her face when she was sentenced is priceless.
Just take time to get to know your kids and your loved ones.
Or go that extra mile with a distressed passenger, suggest they ring the Samaritans..
Ring the Samaritans 116123
text 087 2609090
Or the website www.dublinsamaritans.ie
Denis Segrue got into my taxi and I said something which unchained a story of his which was totally incredible.
"If you don't believe me look for the book" "The Russians are coming" I looked it up and whatever the website did it didn't ask for money! I dropped a note and a few weeks later the book arrived. "No charge, thanks for making the effort to look"
Now you can buy it in Kindle form for 99c.
Here is the plot. Denis has a business in Russia where he lives with his wife. He was building a device to measure the strength of radio signals for mobile phone networks and was doing business with US software and electronic companies. Suddenly some of his contacts dried up, calls were not returned etc. So he packed his bag and flew over.
He bought some chips and other bits, he checked his paperwork and headed for Shannon to see his Daddy on the way home to Russia. He was called to First Class and arrested as being a SPY.
"The biggest spy ring uncovered in US history".
The story about who was driving the prosecution, then the cover up and the lies told is entirely beyond belief.
Then in the end of the book you find who was behind it all.
The best 99c you will ever spend.
One thing that brings all this to mind is a high court case which is kicking off in Dublin. A Mr.Bright who worked for ESB networks was sacked as a threat and danger to Irish and British power networks was sacked as a threat to security. Now in the courts they must prove it.
A good friend of mine inherited my old Prius, at the time she was having an awful time, her husband had cancer and he died around a year later leaving her with 2 small kids.
I looked after the car since then and it nearly has 400,000 Kms on the clock.
All good until she rang me on my return from London,"John I have a problem the battery is gone in the Prius"
So I asked her to call over and she said she would be there at noon.
I got home and texted her to come as soon as she could.
I rang, no answer.
Finally she rang around 2.30 she rang me to say that she was in Howth.
She had been visiting some Chinese friends who had bought a house for €2 million.
If I gave you a bill for €70 per hour that I was waiting you would not be so happy.
I didn't say much more as I had used the time to steam clean the hall and sitting room.
I checked it and it was the dreaded battery fault.
So I took off my taxi roof sign and gave her the taxi to go home while I took out my spanners and wrenches and stripped the battery down.
When you are not used to doing something it is very hard work.
Really only one faulty cell and it was only 2 volts down.
But I have a plan.
Where all the cells were bonded together there was a lot of corrosion, I will get a small wire brush and copper grease and tighten all the cells back together and see how she behaves.
By the way you are working with 7.5 volts x28 then there is a transformer, so if you are awkward make your will first.
I bought a cell on eBay for €50 but it won;t be here until Tuesday.
A crane is assembled in Dundrum, a delicate balancing act where one wrong move could be a disaster.
The French ambassadors residence
Are you ready for Halloween?
This flying saucer landed on my lawn..There were no survivors
The wind has risen again, but we will see.
I was loading up my wifes car when a girl from Brazil implored me to take her into town.
Her second day in Ireland.
Fabiola is her name.
She had no contacts here at all so I got her number and I put her in touch with my Brazilian contacts.
You have to sympathize with her, imagine coming here alone from beautiful sunny weather to this windy wet place.
Every day I travel the world, except the world comes to me.
I like this about the new Ireland.
We once had to set sail to travel the world as there was nothing here.
Thank God that I can support my family not like the unfortunate homeless people of Dublin.
Sister Stanislos Kennedy was at an award ceremony yesterday, she along with Fr.McVerry have given their life's work to helping the homeless.
A new scheme has now been put into place called "Home first"
You take the homeless person and house them add supports then you start to treat their addiction .
The waste of life on Dublin streets is a shame.
" Look into the addicts eyes. What do you see? The eyes are the window of the soul. Can you see? Hell!"
Every taxi driver who has an ounce of compassion has tales of wasted lives. One guy years ago before mobile fones became popular used to meet the girls at the Spar in Bagott St. He would look after their bags and money. He would be there 3 or 4 times during the night. Then in the morning he would bring them home. The tragedy was that his wonderful daughter once became an addict and died alone after a beating. For him it was a task of redemption, I am sure he helped some of them a lot.
Perhaps he turned some of their lives around as well.
One thing for sure don't be too fast to judge other people.
A girl lies on a surf board as her boyfriend issues orders. I told her if he loved her he would be in the water with her.
The WW2 landing craft prepares to enter the water at Surf Dock
Cranes are back in fashion again
The taxi holding area at the airport stands empty.
The storm came and though it was quite a storm it did not live up to expectations.
The army were on high alert and schools were closed. Operations which were not urgent were postponed to reduce the chances of people being hit by falling trees.
Before the storm hit all the birds went silent and a warm breeze arrived 13C.
In Dublin we had a non event about 6 trees blown down while in Cork and Kerry they had more hardship.
3 people died all over which is bad enough though.
I ventured out and found a girl with a broken arm, she didn't know that her appointment was cancelled.
The other young lady I picked up at Clontarf Garda station.
"Did you escape or did they let you out?"
"Is it that obvious, I was held there all night, they beat me with batons and I think I have a broken rib as well"
You might think that in this modern day and age that they would not behave like this.
I have no doubt that she was beaten. I told her to get a friend over and photograph her bruises and to cover her breasts while taking the photos, not to turn it into a page 3 leering display.
Then go to a doctor and to hospital to have an Xray.
Tell the doctor to make notes and tell the hospital that this will be used in an official complaint.
"Jesus mister you must have been through this yourself"
I said no but it shouldn't happen. A little thing could be subdued without any force and put in restraints.`
"I hope you'r not kinky John, you said that like you knew what you were doing"
A big laugh and a €2 tip and we parted our ways..
So home for breakfast and the buses went off.
Not much was really happening and I went home.
The ferry crossings were suspended as well. Europe was totally isolated.
Around 5 PM I found out that hundreds of people were stick at the airport and any taxi was welcome to come with or without the airport pass.
I did 3 runs but the tales of woe were non ending.
Click here to read about the Big wind of 1839 This was a pivotal moment in Irish history
Everything to one side! Tomorrow we are expecting the strongest storm since the 60s I know Mt Trump that you said there is no global warming. But don't go outside without a hat or you might take off like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz All schools closed tomorrow !
Every taxi should have the seats covered, on a wet day the seats get wet and on a really bad day a lady might pee on the seat. I had Dons name and I rang him up. What a fantastic job. It has added at least €1,000 to the value of my car. Dons number is 086 3654615 Click here for his website When you get a good job tell the world!
I spent most of my morning looking at cars in a scrapyard. One of my neighbors was rammed on the seafront ! The other driver just said "I looked and there was no one coming" Still no one injured not like the car in the top photo. I don't know how anyone got out alive. There is a craze out around Baldoyle of setting fire to cars. There is a good case for setting up a vigilante group. As we drove away the memories of her now defunct car came flooding back. "I used to bring Mam out here in the summer, it was a great car" Then delayed shock kicked in and the tears and the moaning came, without any reserve. A dam burst of emotions. Delayed shock. I saw it once when I was called to the childrens hospital in Crumlin. God there are far worse things in life than loosing a car.
Now the last photo taken from an iconic poster drawn by an Irishman in Kilkee co Clare. Its our new stamp. Che was on a flight from Cuba to Moscow via Shannon and his flight was delayed, so someone brought him on a sightseeing tour. The artist never got a penny for his work. But thats life.
Any taxi driver can sympathize with me on this one. A Spanish girl waved me down near the Mosque on the SCR going to the Spire, she was messing with her fone all the time. "Why are you going this way? Go along the SCR and down Camden St. Its quicker." I say that by going down Clanbrassil St I get a bus lane all the way. Conversation goes back to normal until we reach O'Connell bridge "There is the 120 bus that I missed. You took me the long way" So I asked her if she had taken the reg of the bus? There is more than one 120 buses you know. Her bus might be 2 buses behind that one as they have to stop at every stop to pick up people.
You cannot win anyhow, or can you?
The way to deal with this if it is a short journey and you are not too far into it. "I am sorry that you don't trust me and that you think I am robbing you, So I am stopping here and you have to get out. Get another taxi if you can and I wish you a good day?"
I was numbed when I heard of the carnage in LasVegas. Such a sad sad day. So many lives cut short for no reason. Perhaps it is time for the people in America to waken up to the stupidity of the present gun laws. You would think that after all the other times things would change.
I hope that time will heal the pain. God bless you all.
Just one more thing, As Colombo might say.
I bought 2 cars in Japan and imported them into Ireland, one car had only one key.
I asked around and was told that they were very hard to get.
I contacted my agent in Japan and they gave me a breakdown of €540 or near enough.
This price included a handling fee of €50.
Then there would be cost of shipping and local Irish taxes and no it would not be programmed.
So I soldiered on.
Autokey ! This must be the answer to my problem. I went into their Swords branch where a Polish? guy started to serve me. Then Darren took over. We have those keys on order they should be in next week.
I must have phoned back 10 times, now he called me John when he herd my voice. Then it was "I will just check, I know they are in and I will ring you right back" at least 4 times this happened and he never rang back.
Then one day I rang the other branch. "No we have no orders in for those keys at all, anyhow, they are not available".
I was shocked and when I could I went out to Newlands cross to the head office to talk with the boss. The key as it turned out was never ordered. We never got an inquiry for it. The was no explanation as to why Darren lied to me.
Darren did ring me back later with the most stupid explanation and I wish I had it recorded.
Talking to another driver I found a locksmith in Mullhudart who said "No problem" I was away for 4 weeks and when I rang him back he said that my phone was not ringing out for some reason. "I got that key the next day" There is no problem getting those Keys Toyota Ireland have them in stock. So there you have it Be sure you have a spare key for these modern cars. If you loose one it could cost you €3000 to have it re keyed and the locks changed.