This Bermuda ambassador was wrongly accused
Bermuda taxi drivers call me the real “Night Rider”. At the time when most of you are sleeping, out partying or stranded in a remote area, eg, Lagoon Park area in Ireland Island (near Dockyard), Tucker's Town or Gombeys in St David's, I'm the driver who goes above and beyond the call of duty.
Lots of times, my passengers call me an angel because, no matter where you are, the Bermuda Taxi Association dispatcher depends on me to come to get you; rain, blow or shine, all night long. All Cup Match, when persons were sleeping or out, I was working.
On the night I was wrongly accused, it was very busy in the western end of the Island; the entire night.
It was approximately midnight and I was trying to get to the 24/7 service station to refuel. I was stopped by two women stranded at Café Lido. I told them I have two passengers in my taxi and I will come back for them. They paid me no mind, opened the door and got in. They just started grumbling about how long they were waiting at Lido for a taxi. I dropped off my original passengers near the tennis courts.
On the way up the hill, I said, “Excuse me, where are you heading?” They didn't stop talking. I had to repeat myself three times before they responded, “Fairmont Southampton.” Clearly, I noticed they had a bad attitude and no manners. I told them nicely, “I don't have enough diesel to go that far. I will call you another taxi. I told them we have another alternative at the Warwick Rubis station. It is closed but we can acquire diesel by using a card. I told them I could pay them cash for a swipe off of their debit or credit card at the gas pump. One of the passengers said “no”.
She then said you just got $20 from your previous passenger. So I told her cash is not my issue. I opened my money bag and showed them lots of cash. I told her cash would not work in the gas pump. We need plastic; credit cards. I offered her $20 for a swipe; she said no again. It should be noted that swiping a credit or debit card is a common request of tourists as a form of payment for services rendered.
It was obvious that they didn't want to hear anything that I recommended in reference to acquiring diesel.
What I did notice here, which is common for tourists, is that, perhaps this is a case of having one glass too many of Dark ‘N' Stormys. This is where taxi drivers who drive at night exercise patience. I told her the only place I can buy diesel is in town and this is too far out of her way. She said to me: “Take me back to Café Lido.” I told her that it is easier to get a cab at Elbow Beach's entrance and I can't take a chance of running out of diesel.
I then asked her to get out, please, while I called for another cab. She rudely said no, so I dialled my dispatcher. The line was busy and I was put on hold. I went and opened the back door so she could get out. She said that she is not getting out and that she is calling the police. I said: “Good, call the police.” Her friend told her: “Let's get out of the taxi” and she replied “no”, again.
Her friend then got out. I asked her get out while she was talking to 911.
At that moment, a taxi driver came by who was my neighbour and I stopped him. He said he was heading to town and he could not take them. Immediately, two more taxis came and they jumped in one of the taxis and they left.
The media reported untrue information in their story, but this account of the events is how it happened. It must be noted that I never used profanity. I never threatened or forced her out of my taxi. I never tried to run a money scam by the Warwick station. I am a strong man of God and a perfect gentleman. Recently, I received recognition for my services from a boss in the corporate world.
I did not appreciate The Royal Gazette publishing my well-known taxi number in a negative way along with another separate incident reported, of which no taxi call number was given.
Since this news publication, I have been cleared by the Transport Control Department of any negligence. I am the owner/driver of a luxury, top-of-the-line taxi. I conduct myself in a professional manner and I am truly an ambassador of Bermuda. I firmly believe that “no weapon formed against me shall prosper”.
GUARDIAN ANGEL T1756