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Thursday, July 12, 2007



Last night's sunset - part 1
Wailea Lookout
Junction of Wailea Iki & Pi'ilani Highway (SR-31)

An Egret.
You see a lot of these in the evening.

Last night's sunset - part 2
With business as slow as it has been, quite a few of the night drivers are considering leaving. They are tired of day drivers holding over later and later. The opinion is that the day drivers are stealing the fares that should be theirs.

For some reason, they all love to tell me their thoughts, opinions, etc. Ad nauseam. I have never enjoyed "shop talk". It bores the hell out of me. I have a lot fewer minutes of life ahead of me than I do behind me and this is just a waste of time. I know why they do it, I am a critical "sounding board" to them and usually point out where their reasoning is either defective or why it would not make good business sense. Lately I have been just telling them to take it up with the boss. He's the one who has the decision making power, not me. The usual opening gambit of these complaining drivers is:
"The next time you talk to Larry you should tell him...."
"Why don't you tell him yourself?"
"Uh. He won't listen to me."
"Have you tried?"
"No. People listen to you, not me."
The new owners are doing a fantastic job. There have been some significant changes in the way things are done. I have found them to be very open to suggestions. The good ones have been implemented. Sadly, my co-workers are like wolfs with the smell of blood in their brain. Having tasted a bit of progress, they want everything changed. NOW!

It will not occur. A significant amount of capital has been expended and there needs to be a lag time for income to start kicking in. As revenues warrant it, then further expenditures will occur. Eventually, we will have a fixed base dispatcher but to do it on a 24/7 basis requires a minimum of 4 full-time employees (presuming that no one will ever get sick or take vacations), with one shift left over to be covered some how. It would also entail having an office the dispatchers could work out of. Altogether, about $5,000 per month.. Maybe, when business improves, but not right now and not immediately.

Last night was 50% better than Tuesday. Which made it just barely adequate, in my opinion. But any improvement is still an improvement.

As usual, we were top-heavy with cabs when I checked in. The stagnated queue meant that the day-shift holdovers got what few good runs that were assigned in the early part of the shift, leaving the pupu's and short hop bar runs for the night crew.

When I first started taxi driving, as each night driver logged in a day driver would be told to "10-2" (end-of-shift). This insured that we always had enough coverage but were not overloaded. It was equitable and everyone made good money. My first (abbreviated) year I made $50K. $75K the second. This year I am projecting possibly $25K, which is right at the poverty level for a single person on Mau'i.
14 fares / 96 miles / third quarter of $100 bracket

Oh, the reason I didn't talk about any of my interesting fares:
There weren't any.

Hope to see you tomorrow.





"Science City"
Summit Of Haleakala
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"Let's all be careful out there!"