A cab ride into Patchogue's past.

Walking has always been my preference. It provides me with a space to think , to give thanks, to gander my experience and to create the future. Walking in the city as a sole means of transportation is suitable for a place with mass transit, diverse shops and close proximity to the necessary and frivilous, but suburbia offers its own challenges and there are many times that a taxi is unavoidable and sometimes preferred.

 My day off offered no downtime as errands were needed to run and a cab would be most practical to get to the furthest point. I would walk my way back, collecting a few groceries, exchanging niceties and consuming the daily gossip.

Beep, beep.

  My cab arrived and I hastily ran after the intrusive sounding calling card. I jumped in the backseat. I was familiar with the cab driver and I eased in with a chat about the weather, we drove off, shared some words and he began to tell me a story ...

 Back in my days that middle school was the High School and that is where I went to school.

We pulled into the parking lot of my destination, he turns his head and leans a bit forward. Do you have a moment? I would like to share a story. I was in no rush and was happy to hear his tale.

 My friends and I were meeting outside the school property. We were supposed to be in school that day, but we were all prepared to skip school and catch the cannon train to the Polo Grounds to see the Giants and the Dodgers on opening day. Excited, they shared their enthusiasm and were off to catch the train. As they were leaving, the principal showed up and confronted the boys about not being in class and ask them what they were up to.

 Oh @#*%, I thought the gig was up! The cab driver smiled. No sense in lying, we were caught. We all told the principal about opening day, the Giants and the Dodgers, catching the cannon train, and that we were indeed skipping school.

The principal sternly told the boys, You stay right here! I will be back. Do not go anywhere!

 We stayed right there smiled the cabdriver. We were all shuffling our feet just knowing he was getting our teachers and we were surely to be in big trouble. The dreams of opening day, beer and hot dogs all shattered in a moment.

 The principal in full stride returned to where the boys were standing and said ... Lets Go! The boys confused asked ... What?? The principal said, Yes, Lets go! Lets get to the canon train before it is to late.

 The cabdrivers face beamed with youth as he relived that very moment. The principal he said, escorted them to opening day and bought all the tickets and even the beer and hot dogs.

 He only needed to go back to inform the staff that he would not be in for the day.


True story says the cab driver. What a day.


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