One day, I was on the way back home after spending a day in NYC. After I got off the train at East Hampton, I was planning to buy some food in a supermarket near the train station. Then a man who was just outside the station asked me if I needed a taxi. He was a taxi driver and I saw his car was a white limousine.
I said that I had to buy groceries at the store. Then he said that he could wait for me to finish shopping. I was surprised when he said that. I asked him how much he would charge. His answer was the regular rate, the same as an ordinary taxi. I thought that that would be great not only because I could ride in a limousine like celebrities, but also, I could get all my groceries delivered home. But I wasn’t so sure if he really meant it.
Anyway, he drove me to the supermarket across the street and I started shopping. He said that he would wait at the exit. I went to the vegetable section first and I picked out some potatoes. I always bought potatoes when I went shopping as it was my favourite food. Also, I picked up some pasta. While shopping, I wondered if he would be waiting until I finished, so I looked towards the cashier and he was still standing there.
When I finished, he came and helped me load my groceries into the limousine. This was my first time riding in a limousine. The limousine had seats that formed a circle as they went along both doors. I think the material was tweed in light brown. And it was spacious, of course, and comfortable. I sat on the seat at the back and all my groceries were on the seats on the sides of the car. He started the car.
The taxi driver was very friendly and he told me that he was from Ireland. Then I finally figured out why he was so kind enough to wait for me. He smilingly told me that he couldn’t go to Ireland then because it had become too expensive to fly to. I had also noticed that Ireland had become expensive around the time I was leaving there, and it seemed like it was still that way. So, I was surprised. I told him that I had lived in Ireland and that I liked it very much. Also, I said that I was an artist and I would have an exhibition soon.
I felt that every Irish person was nice even outside Ireland. He looked like he was in his 40’s. I don’t remember if I gave him a tip though. There is no custom to give tips in Japan and I don’t remember hearing about tips in Ireland either. So, I forgot. But I think he was very pleasant until the end.