Akber "Cosmic Cab"
Akber Ali Batada (“Cosmic Cab”)
Taxi Company: Beck Taxi
Years driving: 33 years
Languages spoken: English, Hindi, Urdu, Bengali, Marathi and some Punjabi.
Photo location: Kensington Market
Date: May 2, 2016
Can you tell me any interesting passengers or interesting experiences you’ve had with passengers whether they’re famous, or just funny, or strange?
Oh, there are lots of stories. There are so many of them maybe one day I’ll write that in a book. There’s a lady that says she’s a teacher and she called Beck taxi for almost 16, 17 years. And one day she was watching the show Undercover Boss, and she was so excited. One day she said, “Okay, next year I’ll call a Beck taxi and ask for your cab.” So she called back and said, “Can you send me Cosmic Cab?” And the company said, “No, no, we don’t do that.” Again she called next day and said, “Can you give me his number?” And company says, “No, no, we don’t do that.” So one day her birthday’s coming. Same day she called the cab. Luckily she got me. She was so excited.
St. Patrick’s Day, there’s a lady there. Every year they go St. Patrick’s, they go out with their friends. So last year I think her dad passed away, and then she decide not to go out on St. Patrick’s Day. But the friends had decided to take her out that night. So when I took the call from the radio after a couple of hours. It just meant to be me in my car for her. And she was dressed up with St. Patrick’s. And when I went there she said, “Oh my god. God sent this angel for me because we are Irish, and your car decked out with St. Patrick’s.”
Well, I love my job 33 years and to make people happy.