"The Driver Asked To Come Up To My Apartment!" the rider said.
Updated: Jun 8
“I’m so sorry for being late!” A twenty-something female with dirty blonde hair hurried across the street to my car, and grinned.
“Okay,” I said, swiping to start her ride.
“My roommate brought a dog home,” she said, taking up the seat behind me.
This is exciting. “Oh, what kind?” I asked.
“It’s not that. It’s that I had no idea she was getting one, and it won’t stop barking. I don’t know what to do? How am I going to sleep?”
“Oh shoot. She didn’t talk with you before getting it?”
“No. I had no idea she was bring one home.”
“That’s odd. How do you know her?”
“Through this lady that matches people to share apartments. She’s supposed to be wonderful at it. This girl was the most normal out of the ones I met.”
“I’m sorry. Are you living with her long?”
“No. She’s moving out in two months. Do I say something to her or just bite it until she leaves? I’m not going to get any sleep!”
“You have to sleep. Oh gosh.”
“Do you have any lip balm?”
This question catches me off guard a little. “Yes, I do.”
“I need some.”
She’s around the same age as my kids. I think about the one I keep in my door handle grip. “You can have this one.” I take it out of the pocket and extend my arm, behind me, to her. My eyes are on the road. Her destination is only a mile away. It’s dark outside and just after 9 p.m. “You can keep it.”
“I can? Thank you! Some of my friends say you have to be careful using cosmetics at the make-up counter. One friend tells me not to worry about germs because they clean everything.”
"I'd shave the top off before using it."
The map indicates that she’s going near the water, where there are outdoor events at a boat dock.
“I used to be a beauty advisor for Chanel. We had to take the top layer of lipstick off before using it on the next customer.”
“Yes. Your friend says not to worry about germs, but I worked surrounded by different brand cosmetic counters. Some make-up artists are cleaner than others. I’d wash brushes in the sink and at times, a lot of product came off them. But instead, we usually stayed at the counter and spray cleaned and wiped brushes on tissue, until no more product wiped off of them.”
“I’d love for you to do my make-up! Would you do it for me?”
It would be fun, but I don’t have what I’d need to do your make-up. But I can tell you what to do.”
“Oh good! “You remind me of my mom.
"Oh, thank you!"
"I'm having problems with drivers sometimes, too.”
“Will you pull the car over, so we can talk? My ride’s going to end too soon.”
“Of course. Just up a way looks like a good spot to park on the side of the road.” I’m not concerned about her doing anything alarming. She strikes me as stressed, with things she needs to get off her mind. I put my car in park and turn in my seat to face her.
“Sometimes I feel so uncomfortable. A driver asked me if he could come up to my apartment, one night when he was dropping me off. I don’t know what to do,” she said.
"Give him one star and quote what he said on the app when you rate him, so you don't get him again. The company needs to know about that."
I don’t think she’s aware of how attractive she is. “Your body language and how you talk can attract people to you. You might not want to appear so friendly.”
“I tell them I have a work email that I have to respond to, and some still keep talking to me.”
“I’d get in their car while talking on the phone.”
“You can put a different house number on your app when getting picked up and dropped off, so that your address stays confidential.”
“I can do that!”
“There’s tracking on the app too, so a friend or relative can track your ride.”
Her expression changed to surprise.
“I’d wear a baseball hat, and you can put sunglasses on. No visible makeup. It helps me.” I touch the rim of my Nike running hat. “After driving for a while, I figured that putting my hair in a ponytail, putting a baseball hat on and not wearing makeup might stop intoxicated riders from saying inappropriate things. It's made a huge difference for me.”
“Oh! I can wear a baseball hat!"
“Some say it’s terrible that I have to do that, but it has actually flat-lined the remarks. I find I’m not stressed waiting for those comments anymore. Instead of listening to inappropriate intoxicated riders consistently every Friday and Saturday night, in the last year I’ve had one who was border-line and another who waited until his ride was over, before he made sexual remarks.”
“I wear a baseball hat a lot!”
“That’s good. What type of makeup look do you like?” I said.
She described it.
I explain the technique, what it's called, and that there are YouTube videos on it.
“I guess if I practice, I’ll be okay.”
“You will be. I feel certain that you’ll be happy how it looks after you play with the technique.”
“It’s so nice of you to help me.”
I pull us away from the curb and maneuver my car down the street and around the corner. Ropes of lights are strung around the boat dock, a bartender is busy pouring drinks, and music is loud. People in shorts and island tops are mixed into many small groups, sporadic bottles of beer in party-goers hands. “You have a good night and good luck with everything,” I said.
“You’re like my mom,” she says again, exiting my car.
“I love hearing that. Thank you.”