One thing I blooming love about London is how fast paced it can be. I mean don’t get me wrong I welcome the North’s slower pace of life with open arms when I get back and need to calm down from the buzz of the city.

The moment I step onto that train at Darlington I know I will be thrust into another vortex of capital city life and boy don’t I love it.

Up North is about pottering round in your car with no real sense of urgency and our transport links can we be well, lets say, a little slow. London is about hoping off and on one of the most fantastic transport systems a girl could ever ask for. Hello 24 hours tubes, hello!

Now, I have got to give my hats off to those London cabbies that keep this city running day and night. Bus drivers, tube drivers, tuk tuk drivers but especially the cab drivers. Am I wrong in thinking these fellas and chickas are what bring this city to life. They know the shortcuts, they know the lingo and they basically know every street name like the back of their hand.

Grabbing a taxi is a heck of a lot different back home. You can’t just pop onto the street and flag a Hackney. Oh, no, but there was Pete. Pete wasn’t any old Pete, Pete was Cheap Pete.

Pete was a legend and was always an integral part of your night out back in the day circa 2005. He didn’t care if you had kebab hanging from your hair or a mascara streaked face. Pete always had your back, never judged and you know what, I totally miss that guy.

Pete came about on my radar while overhearing a conversation in college back in the day about the best and cheapest way to get from our little seaside town of Saltburn to the bright lights of Middlesbrough. We were slipped his number on the promise not to snag the best times and to keep Cheap Pete a secret.

Pete would be there bang on time. Mix CD at the ready for us to slam on a little bit of Dolly Parton that one of his fellow passengers made from him. We used to chat boys, tunes and pork pies. Pete was such a sucker for a pork pie, he even ventured in to one of our friend houses for a late night treat before he was back toing and froing drunken youngsters home.

Towards the end of Cheap Pete’s cab rides home he used to chat to us about a lady friend he knew from school that he had recently been rekindling a little romance with and then, boom, out of nowhere he was gone. Pete’s phone was off and he left without saying goodbye. Who knows where Cheap Pete is now? Vegas? Vancouver? Venezuela?

I think the North are winning on the Chicken Parmo front but the South most certainly head the way with chatty, cheeky, chappy, cab drivers. If only all northern cabbies were like Pete.

You know how much I love a good statistic so if you want to go take a peek and really see the North V South right in front of your eyes, then head over to the Taxi Survey. Go find out who are the most chattiest passengers, who is more likely to hurl in the back of a cab, who tips the most and let them show you how much of a bargain you grab yourself up north.

Right I am off to get my self a nice hot cup of Rosie Lee and couple of custard creams.

Love Carli x

*This is a sponsored post but man do I miss Pete and the fun times we used to have.

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// Photos by Thumbelina Lillie \


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