A Bridge Too Far

| Queens, NY, USA | Working | March 3, 2017

(I’m out with my boyfriend, who is Norwegian, and we’ve just missed the bus. The next one doesn’t come for a while, and we’re both incredibly tired, so we decide to just catch a taxi home to Brooklyn. After finally getting in the taxi, I begin to speak with him in Norwegian in the backseat for privacy reasons. The trip seems to be going normally until I look out the window and realize the driver is taking us on the Williamsburg bridge INTO Manhattan. You can drive directly from Queens to Brooklyn without going into Manhattan.)

Me: “Um, excuse me… Are we going into Manhattan?”

Driver: “No, this is the Williamsburg Bridge; it takes you to Williamsburg.”

Me: “No, this is the Williamsburg Bridge, which connects Williamsburg to Manhattan. We were in Williamsburg. Now we are driving to Manhattan.”

Driver: “No, we’re driving to Williamsburg.”

Me: “Is that why I see the Empire State Building in the direction we’re driving?”

Driver: “…”

(I am silently stewing, knowing he thought he could charge me extra because he thought I was from Norway, while my boyfriend tries to comfort me. We get to the end of the bridge and turn around from Manhattan, to go back into Brooklyn. In the past when taxis have made a false move by accident, they always turn off the meter to account for it. This driver doesn’t. We finally arrive at my destination, and the price is MUCH higher than it should have been.)

Me: “I’m not paying for that. I’ll pay [amount] for the ride. But I’m not going to pay for that $10 of traffic and turning around for no reason.”

Driver: “How about—” *listing number almost as high as the metered fare*

Me: “No.”

Driver: *sighing* “Okay, okay, fine.” *takes my money*

(I wrote down his taxi license and reported him. I had location turned on on my phone, and even had a Google Maps history recording of the ridiculous trip he took me on. I’d never been so pissed before, because no one had ever tried to rip me off thinking I was a tourist in my own city!)

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