You can’t anticipate who or how the driver will be
Someone quiet or sullen
Someone doing his job
You might wonder if he sees you as the person you are
He may well be asking himself the same about you
Yet there you are, both
mostly focused on getting you where you’re going.
This trip the driver began talking as soon as he pulled into the roadway
Complaints about his boss, angry at him for some confusion
I didn’t hear the words so much as I noticed the energy in his voice
So I gathered myself, preparing to be witness to
a ride full of judgment and blame.
Then he commented on the ferry ride I was heading for
The energy shifted and lightened as I responded.
A door opened; he announced today was his birthday
I smiled and wished him well.
And in the next four minutes of conversation
I witnessed the man behind the wheel of this cab
The whole of his life
His aspirations and deep disappointments
Laid bare before a stranger
It was really a very short ride,
but it covered a long journey
One that I was privileged to glimpse
from the back seat of his car.
It was, in fact, the most privileged moment of my day.