W O R D S F R O M M Y C A B D R I V E R :
Charles, Former Diplomat & Current Student
What’s your favorite memory of New York?
My favorite moment was 9/11 because I saw the second plane coming…I saw it coming. I was just across the water…in this part of Brooklyn. It was on election day, and I was taking part, I was one of the returning officers. It was around eight in the morning—seven-thirty, eight, eight-thirty. We heard that a helicopter fell into the water, that is what we heard, you know what I’m saying? Around nine the news spread that it was a terrorist attack. Believe you me, as everybody was wondering trying to figure out what was going on we saw a giant…bird. Like a giant bird, it was like a movie! Believe you me, it was just like a movie…very big plane, it came in like it was coming from, you know…like angle 45? Believe you me, it did a somersault and went in, just like this. It was like a movie, you wouldn’t believe the trauma. I am a very strong person. You wouldn’t believe what was going on. You wouldn’t believe! You would think, ‘Is this a movie?’ If it was a movie it was too much. When the building collapsed you could see. Horror. Horrific. Awful.
Charles pauses the conversation to inquire about directions. As he is trying to make a lane change, another cab refuses to let him in.
They are so stupid. You see I want to make a right turn, he should wait for me!
Everyone’s trying to get to where they’re going…
No, that’s not how it should be! We need more haste, less speed. You don’t understand—more haste, less speed. Because at the end of it all when you are in too much of a hurry, you are going to possibly get into a crash or an accident and you’re going to be delayed. A cop might pull you over because of speeding. So more haste, less speed. You know?
More haste, less speed. I like it.
I don’t get worked up when someone lets my car in, good. If he doesn’t let my car in, good. I mean, I try to be the best I can. Because at the end of the day, whatever will be will be. At the end, you will see somebody say, ‘Long Island, I give you $200,’ Yes! …I always believe in miracles. Like, God is not a magician, He is a miracle maker. He is not a magician. A magician plays on your intelligence. A miracle is something beyond human explanation. You try to figure it out, how, how? It becomes impossible, that’s the way it is. So I’m very positive, very very. Because at the end of the day, whatever will be, will be.
It is like, one of my cousins, she didn’t get married on time. Do you know people? She was so pretty! In Nigeria though, people were disturbing her. Anybody that disturbs her is the wrong one. You know what I mean ‘disturb her,’ who tries to take her out on a date? When the right person came, she is one of the richest in the family today. You know? She was blessed. So just take it easy. When it’s time, it’s time. You know?
Thank you for riding with me in style! …whatever you’re looking for, believe it’s going to be and it will be! Work towards it, don’t get disturbed. Don’t let anybody, you know, tell you ‘Oh no, it cannot be!’ Who told you it cannot be? It will be! You know, just be focused…
Good luck, okay? Take care of yourself.