I’ve worked a lot of different jobs. Some could be described as “blue collar,” some “white collar,” and some right in between. I can however say that one job I took my sophomore year of college was unlike any I’ve had before or since.
I met Ron Goldstein at a FSU part time career fair and he told me that Capital City Pedicabs was hiring. I kept the flyer, and when on with my job search. After a week or two, none of my other applications had yielded results. That’s when I decided to contact Ron. “I feel like I’m in good enough shape, why not give it a try?”
After a short interview where I showcased my cycling experience and work history, I was hired. A short training session with the bike-carriage-rickshaw was all I needed to ready to start taking fares. Not totally sure what to expect, I went out on my first shift. “Happy hunting” said Ron, with a grin.
I don’t exactly remember my first ever shift. My days as a driver tend to blend together. During the day, you’re trying to keep from overheating (hydration is key). At night, a cool breeze might be there to help you out if you’re lucky. Either way, piloting a pedicab is hard work. Not for the faint of heart or those afraid of high speed carriage rides down College Avenue. Keep your chin up and you’ll do alright. Red bull and granola bars are a surprisingly effective fuel source.
There are things that you expect to see when roaming Tallahassee past one a.m. As a pedicab driver, you get to see it all. The good, the bad, the young men and women heaving their guts out on the sidewalk beside Madison Social –all part of the experience.
Ultimately, being a pedicab driver will teach you a lot about hills, tipping, negotiation, customer service, and the physical limits of your thighs. If you think you’ve got the glutes, give it a shot. I’ve been blunt here, but Mike and Ron really do work hard to make the job better, and for that I thank them. Next time you see a yellow rickshaw coming down the street, give ‘em a whistle. It’s more fun than a cab and you’ll make more memories (granted you remember anything from the night). Just remember to tip.