Big Business Dies
Cab drivers are called all kinds of things but the last thing I thought we would be called is loyal customers. Most cabbies I know are looking for the latest and greatest when it comes to places to go. But one place all cabbies can agree on is what convenience store to stop at for all our needs. What’s the name of this store? I couldn’t tell you if my life depended on it and I’m sure I’m not the only one. This was the only store that was shown to me on my first day of “training”. I was told, “you can piss anywhere but if you need anything else come here. They’ve got it”. On my first day on my own I had to go in and see what the hell my trainer was talking about and the best way to describe it is WalMart in a broom closet. It had everything from cloths to slots.
I started going there everyday to get my water bottle and news paper. The staff found out that I was a cabbie and let me know that if there is ever a line just grab what I need and leave the money in the counter. If I need change just wave the bill so they can see it and they will have it ready. JACKPOT!!! I can walk in and out in under 60 sec and not have to wait the average 5 mins at the 7-11 store up the street. So of course almost every cabbie stops by there. Over the years about 5 other shops tried to open there and were gone within a year. Even the cafe that called themselves “Taxi Stop” went under. Yes the no name store we all go to even has a kitchen and serves food.
About 6 months ago I noticed that another convenient store was going in, but this one had big money backing it. It was 7-11 going in about 300 feet away. I could tell that the guys at our shop were worried at first but started to change things up. They expanded their menu of fresh “grab and go” food and made sure that the restroom was always in working order. On the opening day of the 7-11 there were big signs and flags and every grand opening gimic you could imagine. The only thing the 7-11 was missing was the customers. I think every time I drove by for nearly two weeks the parking lot was empty. Over time, a few out of state cars were parked over there and a cab or two, but for the most part it still looks like this everyday. I took this picture about two weeks ago (5 months after opening)