Anarchy in the UK or how not to get shot by SKS’s

So, I was out cabbing on a verrrrry slow Monday night.  How slow? I watched two episodes of SG-1 on my netbook and got a 1/4 of a book read between fares.  Just when I thought the night was gonna be one of those rare busts, what to my wondering eyes, but a long haul fare from the ‘northern burbs to downtown.  I roll to the call and pick up the woman, who smelled of jasmine…heavily of jasmine…when she got in the rear seat.

Fare:  “Please hurry.  xxx SOUTH xxxx street.  My son is in the pentagon and he’s been murdered.”

My first thought here was…well actually I didn’t have any thoughts.  This was the most awful,  yet strangely poetic entrance to my cab I’ve ever had.  So I verified the address on the GPS and we rolled.

Fare:  “I’m a secessionist of the UK.  We must hurry please…oh can you turn the radio up?”

Me:  “Sure.  Not going to break any laws, but I’ll get you there as fast as possible.”

Fare:  “That’s nice.  You know I’m in the UK as a secessionist.  We must hurry.”

Me: —-the silence of the “oh dear gods I’ve got a lunatic in the car”.

We drove. and drove….(address was a long way off).

During the drive she muttered of plots and murders and doom and oh yeah, more  secessionist-isms in between mumbling along to the lyrics of the music playing on the radio.

Then as we pull up to the house:

Fare: “This isn’t the right place.”

Me: “Uh…you said 1450 xxx South xxx.  This is it”.

Fare:  “No its one block south of xxxx on xxxx.”

Me:  FACEPALM.  “Ma’am, that’s waaay north of here.”

Fare:  “This isn’t the UK, and I’m in the UK, and you’ve taken me for a ride.”

Me: (with sinking feeling I’m not going to get any real MONEY either at this point.) “So its xxx street without the SOUTH on it?”

Fare:  “Yes.  Please hurry.  I do hope they don’t start shooting with SKS’s.”

Me: “SKS’s????”

Fare:  “Yes.  Please hurry.  I don’t want to get shot by the SKS’s.”

Me:  At this point, I KNOW the woman is severely schizophrenic, and feel bad, yet oddly at this point I’m somewhat entertained.  As a writer, plot lines start swirling through my brain, all of them terrible, yet intriguing in a train wreck sort of way.

I roll back to the corrected address, which of course, wasn’t the pentagon.  It was one of the those tenement motel/apartment places where the “lost people” sometimes end up.

I got paid.  Part of it in quarters, but money is money.

Cleared the meter and rolled on.

I sure hope she didn’t get shot by the SKS’s.

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