Saturday, May 12, 2007

Of Limo's and Lush-ous Ladies...

I headed in early last night for a limo run. Disguised in shirt and tie, I pulled the old, white, stretch-Lincoln out of its lair and hit the highway in 21-feet of faux-luxury. Soon I was skirting the wilds of Carleton Place, steering the leaky, old boat along miles of narrow dirt roads, feeling like I was piloting the Titanic in a tributary. At a fork in the road I chose the wrong branch, thanks to some sign-spinning jackass, but recovered with some delicate maneuvering and a handily-situated laneway. I arrived at the pick-up with five minutes to spare, pulling up to an imposing log home situated a quarter mile off an already beaten track. Thankfully there was just enough room to get the beast turned about. My passengers, two well-appointed ladies, appeared on the large porch, already mildly greased in anticipation of the evening's festivities. I introduced myself, and showered them with my undivided attention, which consisted entirely of opening and closing the limo's doors to load them in. I then pointed the nose of my good ship towards the road, and took directions for my next stop through the divider.

I picked up three more passengers on the way to a benefit for breast cancer. The quintet of ladies ranged in age from late-thirties to mid-sixties. They were a gregarious gaggle of gals, clearly intent on getting gassed and having fun. I dropped them off at the arena in Pakenham, in a hall above which the festivities were taking place. A couple of hundred similarly attired and battle-ready ladies of all ages were already milling about in groups, filling the early evening air with bursts of laughter and loud chatter. I left them there, returned to Carleton Place, shed my disguise, and drove a few fares about town, before settling down to read, as the calls predictably dried up.

At midnight I returned to Pakenham. I read the paper as I waited for my charges to appear, and smiled with Oscar-caliber panache each time a drunken reveler, inhibitions worn to the nub by drink, approached to ask if I was there for her? I casually deflected more than a dozen such approaches before the first of my ladies appeared, walking unsteadily, remaining upright only with the help of a concerned friend. I hopped out, performed the role of gallant gent/bootlick chauffeur, and when all were aboard, headed for the open road, the boisterous cackling of hell-bent matrons muted only by the window separating our compartments.

Earlier, during my repeated exchanges with passersby inquiring as to my availability, the passenger window of my compartment became stuck in the fully retracted position, making for a cold ride home. I blasted the heater and fan to the max, and succeeded in keeping the chill from rendering me cryogenically preserved.

As I sped along the dark and desolate flattop, a boulder-sized impediment appeared over a rise, dead in front of me, immobile. I slowed, quickly, momentum resisting my earnest pedal-work, until I was nearly on top of a porcupine that stood with its back raised and quills extended in defiance of my approach. The ladies reacted, some with hilarity, others with alarm, all by being thrown forwards with the sudden stop. When the relief that they were all going to survive had passed, a chorus of cursing was followed quickly by alcohol-fueled recrimination. The porcupine, having escaped harm, (as I literally nudged it when I stopped), waddled casually the rest of the way across the road and into the woods.

I opened the divider, feeling compelled to offer an explanation. Since porkies are not well regarded in these parts, I explained, with admirable daft, that a "large animal" had crossed our path and that everything was now all right. I prayed nobody was sober enough to peek out the window and see the great beast waddle into the bush.

I dropped my charges off, two at the first stop, one at the next, and finally pulled up the long lane in the woods to the impressive log home. The lights were on inside and out. I opened the rear door of the limo, and began gathering up the various parcels of booze and party favors, while the more sober of my two remaining passengers attempted to deal with the one slipping into a cocktail-induced coma. She got her friend to the rear door after much fumbling, and thrust her towards me. I grabbed her to keep her from falling, my hands very much in contact with more of her than she might otherwise consider proper. As she was somewhat my senior, I wholeheartedly endorsed the notion of impropriety. We escorted her to the door, one on each arm, where she waved her key threateningly at the lock before her friend finally took over. As they entered, the home alarm system began beeping. She failed repeatedly to disarm it, and the alarms kicked in, blaring loud, staccato, electronic bursts into the night. The phone rang, and she ran for it. I was on the porch, looking through the window as she passed by, leaning too far forward it seemed to me, before she disappeared from view. A loud crash announced her difficult landing. But as is so often the case with drunken mishaps, she was unhurt, and not the least embarrassed, having only a dim awareness of her plight.

A neighbor showed up and disabled the alarm. I was offered a drink, which I declined, as they indulged themselves before a now blaring, and beautifully ancient, Wurlitzer jukebox. After much encouragement, my client agreed to settle our account, and allow me to leave. She finally decided on cash, tipped me handsomely ($68) for my efforts, and hugged me enthusiastically before releasing me back into the wild.

37 comments:

Roy said...

Hi looking for permission to use some of your content on my site?

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cabhack said...

Thanks Roy,

Feel free to link me! If you'd prefer to just post some stories, I'm fine with that too.

Cheers

LiMo said...

Your story is full of adventures. Though not all of them are very funny, but thanks God you had Happy End.

LiMousine said...

I see now that if you drive a limo, your passengers can be so different and such stories can happen to you. I like how you behaved in this situation, you became calm, you didn't panic. And it helped in that situation.

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