(Not) Getting a Cab in Austin: Part 1

So I just got back from SXSW, which it’s actually difficult for me to type without a hashtag, and I had like, an 85% great time.

Only 85%? But SXSW (#) is supposed to be, like, Geek Mecca! Nirvana for the nerd set! Hipster heaven!

And it was all that – and more! It was awesome like a music festival, minus the sleeping outside and the mud, and it was inspiring like church (if you’re into that sort of thing). Late nights, early mornings, and a wealth of information it’ll take me weeks to sort through. But I can break that other 15% down for you in four simple words: The cabs there? SUCK.

The first day was fine, actually. Totally cool. I went online and ordered a cab for 8:45am, and, at about 9am one showed up. Perfect! That night, I booked a cab for 8:30, just to be safe, and drifted to sleep thinking how convenient the whole thing had been.

At 9:15 the following morning, I was not finding it so very convenient. My friend’s husband, roused from bed by his groggy wife for the purpose of driving me to the convention, was not finding it very convenient either.

I’d called the cab company at 8:45 to inquire as to the status of my cab, and was told, in a slow Texas drawl, that there were no cabs avaliable.

“But I booked online!” I said, my heart rate accelerating. “You HAVE to have a cab for me!” I’d been so nervous about this very thing – the cab just never coming, being late to my first session – and here it was, happening! The power of negative thinking? SHUT UP.

“Ma’am, I don’t know what you want me to do,” answered the dispatcher.

“What do I want you to do? What do I want you to DO?” Practically shrieking, for sure: “I WANT YOU TO GET ME A CAB IS WHAT I WANT YOU TO DO!”

“I am doing my best, ma’am, but there are no cabs available.”

And that’s about when my head exploded. By the time got to the 9:30 session “The State of Social Marketing“, there was a full house and a line out the door for seats. But, bonus, the session I wound up going to instead had mimosas. That didn’t really make up for it, though. I’d really been looking forward to the social marketing session.

TBC dudes –

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