“Right after school, I took up a job as a driver. I was driving a pickup bolero, and swiftly after I met a girl. We were in love and I convinced both our parents to get us married. For the next one and a half years, the marriage worked well before we started to drift apart. It was fate that led to our divorce and this affected me deeply. I didn’t feel like driving a private vehicle anymore and to get a change of scenery, I came to T/phu. Becoming a taxi driver felt like a job that could help me move on faster and that’s what I did. Initially, I drove a rented taxi. Soon, I saved enough money to buy my own. My life here is lonely and parts of my history always get back to me.
I started working round the clock. I’d start at 8 am from home and go on till 12 at night. The hardest thing of all is going back to an empty house and often it leads to depressing times.

Being a taxi driver, it’s easy to become invisible in a city like this. We may not attract any attention to ourselves and often, people only know you as a driver and nothing more.

I had several instances where passengers travelled without any money on them. When they get off, I just smile and tell them that it’s okay. And that there’s always a next time. There are others who were drunk and this could be scary, but I make sure that they get to their destination. On late nights, some customers don’t have enough money and seeing desperation when they try to haggle with the fare, I’d just agree. Sometimes it’s also sad. At least they have a family to go to at the end of the day.

Once, at 2 am in the morning, I drove a Lama to Chunzom. The fare was 2000 but he gave me double that. I felt bad and tried to refuse, but he really wanted me to take it. That gesture made me so happy.

Like all others in this city, I too have a dream. I want to save enough money to open a big shop, get married again and have a house full of kids to look after. Maybe for that reason, I’m working so hard.”

#HumansofThimphu #HumanStories #Thimphu

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