There have been plenty of times when I have gotten a request for a ride and it is for more than one passenger. See The Fabulous Uber Boys, the story of boys night out for some examples. But usually, all of these people know each other. They were all out and about together and decided to share a ride. Although, one time, this was not the case.
So, my Uber day, started like most. I was out running errands and decided to turn the app on to see if I can get any rides. After the initial ride or 2, I get a request to pick someone up at an assisted living facility. I see this guy walking towards the car but then right when he was about to get in the car, I see him stop and he starts talking to this woman who was leaving at the same time. After a short discussion, he opens the car and asks if I would mind giving the woman a ride too. Thinking they are going to the same place, I said, “Sure, why not”.
Well they both get in the car and it turns out these people don’t even know each other. While they both work at the same place and have seen each other around, they have never talked to each other before. Oh, and they are not even going to the same place. They ask me if this was OK and I am thinking to myself, I have no idea. But seeing that I am always up for a new adventure, I agree and we are on are merry way.
So as I start to drive and we discuss how this is going to work. We all agree that since the man, let’s call him Tony, had initially booked the ride, that we would just use his account to make things easier. We then plugged in the woman’s destination, let’s call her Maria, (Why Tony and Maria – well I just saw my daughters’ HS production of West Side Story and these were the first 2 name that popped in my head – excellent show by the way) but that I would drop off Tony first. We figured out that the total cost would be roughly $10 more for me to drop Maria off, so she just gave Tony the $10 difference.
As we start towards Tony’s destination, he starts saying that he just moved here recently from NY and that today was his birthday. At this point, Maria and I start to sing Happy Birthday to him. OK, not really, but we did wish him a happy birthday. He goes on to say that he was heading to this store so he could by a new green bong as a birthday present to himself. He then realizes what he said and what it implied and admits that he does smoke pot (no really??). The conversation then transitions to how hard it is to find good pot in the area. He is saying that probably the best people to ask would be the younger kids, but since he is in his later 20’s, if he does that, they all think he is a cop. He is also reluctant to asking someone older because, like I said he is new to the area and not sure who he can trust. Wow, what a dilemma. Maria and I are not really sure what we can do to help so we change the conversation.
Tony goes on to say that he does miss the night life in NY and that there really was no good clubs the area. I asked him if he tried Visions at the casino or some of the other places in Bethlehem. He then mentions that he is gay and that he cant find any good gay clubs around here. OK, well then I am not going to be any help and not just because I am straight, but because at my age, the only time I am deciding on a club is when I am debating between a 7-iron or an 8-iron. The only reason I know about Visions is because I have dropped people off there before.
At this point we reach Tony’s stop. I drop him off and head to Allentown to drop Maria off. I could go on, but Maria has her own story to tell so you will have to tune in later to here the rest of this Uber Side Story.
Photos by Suzanne Drake Photography