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Pedicabs After Dark... Continued.

ears, surprising me with the sort of honesty that only a stranger can be trusted with. And oh, the ladies; they love being treated like princesses, so they treat me like a prince.

The whole thing goes beyond being social, and becomes downright theatrical. I’m putting on a show, the whole city is my stage to play it out on as I please, and anyone I see is in the cast with me. That’s the real crux of it too: to get folks in the cab, I have to get them to play along with the whole production. No one goes out planning to ride the pedicab, and so I have to get them to branch out from their original plan to try something new. If they realize that crossing paths with me is the best thing that’s happened to them all day, that’s when they’re going to have the best time, and so will I.

By the time I end a shift, I’ve been through an exhilarating epic. I’m fatigued and ready to relax, but I’m also on a killer endorphin-high that tells me I could go all night if I tried. Normally, going out to celebrate is a good compromise. So I tell whoever I’m hauling that they are my last ride of the night. It makes them feel special, but I say it mostly so that I hear it, because it’s time to let the late-night driver have his fun. I wave at the chefs smoking behind the restaurant when I roll back in, then I sit in the shed to count up my tips. That’s always exciting because the money is great, and you’d be surprised what else finds its way into the tip-box. Washing the sweat off in the bathroom comes with a sense of accomplishment – I look like a racehorse in the mirror, and I feel like one too. A job that has me pushing my body hard, meeting people, and making riches all at the same time is pretty much the best thing I can be doing any given evening.

The core of the entire action of pedicabbing is getting connected. Every time I ride I bond with myself, my passengers, and the city as a living thing. Pedicabbing is one of those occupations, like being a cowboy or a musician, that is more than just a job. There are equal parts adventure, romance, fame, and challenge, but the best part is how people interact with my vehicle and me – We’re iconic. While I ride a pedicab, I am as much a part of the city as any coffee-bar, park, storefront, or indeed even the streets themselves.

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