Saturday, January 26, 2008



In one swift movement the door locks firmly behind me as I see the taxi drive away from the building.

This is, it should not be underestimated, a bad thing. It is 1.20am. I have just finished work. I am carrying an overfull handbag, a bunch of tulips and the remaining three slices of (not just any cake but) M&S chocolate drizzled birthday cake. And - this is the factor that really tips the situation over the edge - it is raining. The kind of rain which, twenty four hours earlier, had Leeds on flood alert for seven hours.

There is, of course, the possibility that the taxi which has driven away is not the one intended for me. That my taxi has not just been snaffled from under my nose as I stand sheltering in the Smokers' Corner outside an entirely dark theatre. As the rain splashes at my feet it strikes me, for only the second time in my life, that this is a time where smoking would have been a positive lifestyle choice.

I do the only thing (other than eat the cake) which I can: I phone the taxi firm and try not to sound too unbalanced even though I do not have enough hands or enough sanity left to fulfil the task.

The man on the other end calls me 'love' and puts me on hold. It continues to rain.

Finally the man returns: my taxi driver has indeed driven off with another passenger. He has therefore been told to turn round and come back for me.

It is only after I've said goodbye that I begin to think the implications of this through. Is my errant taxi driver going to dump his passenger in some random street, possibly where they will be attacked and end up in little pieces in various farmfoods bags in someone's house? Crikey, this is the stage where numerous factors have combined to mean that I have too much power. I am a little scared myself.

But it is still raining and I have to be back in work in twelve hours time so my momentary flash of concern disappears as quickly as it started. When I see the lights of a taxi I care for nothing other than getting in it.

Only, as I hopefully peer through the window it becomes apparent that whilst I am the only person around this taxi is not for 'Corrin' (as I am traditionally spelt on the monitor).

"I'll speak to control" the driver says, possibly reluctant to take a slightly annoyed, not to mention slightly soggy, woman in his taxi.

I go back to Smokers' Corner where it is at least dry.

After what seems like an eternity the driver signals for me to get in the car. I celebrate by losing my shoe as I step in. I try and distract the driver from my scrambling to find it by giving him details of where I want to go.

When I've located my shoe and shut the door he turns round to me -

"So you know where you're going?"

I make a mental note that next time I have a Press Night I shall arrange to sleep in the first aid room.


Nik said...

farm foods still scares me...

Val said...

There are just a select few of us who read those words and immediately think 'Nottingham Ice Arena'! x