A couple months ago I got a cab late at night in the rain. The cab driver had back seats pushed flat so I didn’t know where to sit. He waved me into the front seat and explained that he had just taken a couple to the airport and the seats were pushed back for their luggage.
We made small talk but partway through the drive things got weird. It was like he was looking for any excuse to lean over and touch me. He complimented me on my shirt and asked what material it was made of. I said I didn’t know and he just reached over and ran his hand up and down my shirt. It made me really uncomfortable but I didn’t know what to do.
I was anxious to get out of the car when we got to my house but I still had to pay for the ride. All I had was a credit card and it seemed that his machine was taking forever to process it. He said it might not go through and leaned over almost on top of me and “jokingly” asked whether I wanted to pay him a different way. I pretended like I didn’t know what he was talking about and asked if he needed a different card. He just looked at me and laughed. Finally, after what seemed like forever, he handed me my receipt.
I was shaking when I got inside. I had been scared but as soon as I was away I felt angry. Mostly, I felt angry at myself for not saying something. I was also angry at myself for not making note of his name and ID number, but then I realized that they wouldn’t have been visible from the front seat, anyway. I still wonder if he really had the back seat down from taking people to the airport of if he just wanted to get women to sit up front.
I laid awake for hours that night wondering if he was driving other women around right then and doing the same thing. Did he tell them that he liked their shirts, too? If not, why did he choose to do it to me?
I am scared to take cabs now, scared that they next cab I take will be him again. And it was wrong.