My flights to and from Philadelphia were scheduled to land in the wee hours of the morning.

Since I was traveling alone this was a little bit of a concern for me both ways.

My kindly host at the Philly Airbnb had said to call her when I was in the taxi and she’d have the front door unlocked for me when I arrived.  She also assured me that the journey from the airport was a straight shot and about 20 minutes.

Before I left home I was feeling bold and downloaded both the Uber and Lyft apps and practiced requesting a ride from Footlights to DFW airport.  There were always plenty of cars available, the cost was reasonable and I decided I could do it!

Still, when I landed in a strange city at 1am, without my brave Texan by my side, I was a little nervous, those stories…of getting into a car with a stranger and being taken to a remote spot in the country…played with my sensibilities.

But I set the cautionary tales aside and stood at the curb with my fellow travelers with my phone and clicked the Lyft icon.


Immediately a photo of Hasmin popped showing his car and license plate number.  I clicked ‘yes’ and waited about 4 minutes watching his progress to where I was standing.

He pulled up to the curb got out and put my bag in the boot and we were off.

I could keep an eye on his GPS on his dash as well as track the route on my phone…

So far so good!

It took about 12 minutes to my destination and when we arrived he hopped out, retrieved my case and I was up the steps and opening the front door in no time.

Phew, safe and sound with a bottle of wine and some crusty bread and cheese to welcome me to the Urban Aerie


where I was to spend a few days with my film-maker son while we attended the Podcast Movement Conference.

We used the ride sharing app. several times together and by the time I arrived back in Dallas, four days later at midnight, I didn’t think twice about hailing Lyft to come get me.

Mahmed picked me up and we left the airport,

“Do you know where you’re going?” I asked looking at his GPS on the dash.

“Yes,” he said blithely.

I knew exactly where I was going…I suspected he had never heard of FM 543, Weston or Rigsby Lane…all he could see on his GPS were the familiar city names he would be passing through, Frisco, Allen and McKinney.

He had no idea I was taking him far out into the country, beyond the twinkling city limits, to a remote spot in the country….

Once we left the freeway and began the rural part of our journey I could sense a shift in confidence emanating from the driver’s seat.


About 4 miles along Weston Rd. he asked,

“Is this the only way back to the airport?”

“Yes,” I said, “but from my house it’s about 11 minutes to Central…”

“Oh really?” he said, “I’ve never been here before…” I remembered my first experience along 543 at night, the dark, winding road seemed never ending.

“Yes really,” I assured him, “It’s only because this is your first time that you think it’s a long way.”

I kept an eye on his GPS to make sure it prompted him to turn onto Rigsby Lane, it did.

“This is a dirt road and I’m a mile along it so go slowly,” I warned, “never know if a dog or cow is going to jump out at you.”  He looked from side to side.

“You can put your full beams on if you like,” and immediately the pastures and hay fields sprang to life on either side of us further highlighting the vast, empty space.

“Ignore your GPS telling you to turn on Ballinlough,” I said watching from the back seat, “just keep going straight.”

…down a narrow hill overhung with trees, the darkness closing in on us as we plunged deeper along the lane…

“Turn right here,” I said at Footlights, “this is my driveway,”


we continued with not a house or a barn or a trailer in sight, just overgrown meadows and dark clusters of trees.

Finally the porch lights Hubs had left on came into view and the atmosphere in the car brightened.

I laughed, “usually it’s the passenger who is concerned about being driven way out into the country and…” I trailed off as he stopped at the garage.  He didn’t know what to say so popped the boot and got out,

“Is it all right if I stop for a couple of minutes…to have a cigarette?” he asked.

“Oh yes,” I said with a smile.  “Thank you!  Remember, just 11 minutes to Central,” and I was gone, into the waiting arms of Hubs hovering at the backdoor.

Poor Mahmed!

I left him a handsome tip the following morning using my app. and wondered if he’d be quite so blithe on his next trip off the beaten track?


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2018-08-20 17:44:21 Reply

I was glad when it was all over personally!

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