Where’s the chauffeur? I wondered during my recent experience as rear seat client.
I’m sure from time to time everyone reading this has an opportunity to be a passenger in one of your own vehicles. It probably isn’t as often as most people outside our business think, and perhaps we should ride more often. I always think it’s funny when people at the grocery store ask me if I came in a limo. The truth is, since it represents our work environment, most of us probably shun riding in a livery vehicle whenever possible.
On the other hand, I think it is really bad when people in our industry drink and drive when there really is no reason for that and you can bet if you had a crash, especially one with injuries or death, your profession would be brought up in the media for sure.
That brings me to how I ended up becoming a passenger for the day. I was planning to attend a Chamber of Commerce casino night after work. I knew that I would be drinking. My grand plan was to have a sedan pick me up at home in the morning and deliver me to the office. I could pretend that I was some high-powered Boston financial executive being picked up for my morning commute to work. After work, I would have a limo pick up my guests and then come by the office, pick me up, take us to the venue, and then home at the end of the night.
My pick-up was scheduled for 07:30. At 07:20, I started wondering if the car would be on time as I looked outside and saw no car. At 07:30, I looked out the window and I was pleasantly surprised to see the chauffeur backed into my driveway. He was standing next to the passenger door waiting for me. When I got in the car, the morning newspaper was laying out across the seat. Everything seemed perfect. As we began heading to the office, the chauffeur was about to take an incorrect route. However, in his defense, I know that every chauffeur that ever picks me up takes the same GPS recommended route that may indeed be faster but is way out of the way, heading extremely north and then south. I had to “suggest” my “preferred route”. That was okay.
At the end of the night, we came out and found the limousine waiting right outside the front door. It was locked up, parking lights on, and engine running. There was no chauffeur anywhere to be found. This was disturbing. Fortunately, after a night of gambling, my friends wanted to smoke a cigar before getting in the car and all lit up oblivious to the fact that there was no chauffeur. I was not pleased but made no comment. When the chauffeur returned, he seemed caught off guard that we were standing near the car. In his defense, he was bringing a group of people out to the car that had our company brochures in their hands and wanted to see the inside of the car. Because I was the first to be dropped off, I could not discuss the incident with him but I handed him a $5 bill for my four-hour evening. That should properly convey to him what tips are all about. TIPS = To Insure Prompt Service.
Jim Luff, LCT contributing editor
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