Behind the wheel of the Dad Taxi

There are numerous signs that my children are getting older. Five-year-old Izzy no longer watches Paw Patrol and, nearing the end of her first year at school, has learned to read and write. Helen, who is nine,  is spending more time with friends, has decided that I can be “embarrassing” and has developed an interest in make-up.

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I have had a brief glimpse of my future. I will be driving the Dad Taxi lot, lot more in future.

A further sign that my kids are getting older presented itself on Saturday. It wasn’t a subtle little thing either, it sort-of came marauding into my life like Wildebeest charging across the African savannah.

For an entire day I played taxi driver. Yes, I was unquestionably Dad Taxi.

It was a complicated logistical feat as I had to drive to several different locations at different times. Sometimes I had to drive to the same location more than once.

This only happened because my kids are developing their own interests and friendships. They’re developing a life away from the family home and someone has to drive them around. That someone, it turns out, is me.

Here’s how my day went as Dad Taxi:

  • 7am – The day got off to a glamorous start as I took a load of cardboard to the recycling bins. This may not sound like it has anything to do with my kids, but this was the one and only chance I had to go to the recycling centre because of what lay ahead of me for the rest of the day.

 

  • 8am – Go and collect Helen from an overnight camping trip she’d been on and drop Mrs Adams off at her riding lesson before taking Helen home to spend some time with my mother-in-law.

 

  • 10am – Collect Mrs Adams and return home (via both the supermarket and a friend’s house to drop off some curtains she is adjusting for us).

 

  • 12.30pm – Take Izzy to a birthday party.

 

  • 13.15pm – Leave party and return home to collect Helen to take her to a gymnastics lesson.

 

  • 13.40pm – Drop Helen at gymnastics lesson. Return to Izzy’s party

 

  • 14.45pm – Leave Izzy’s party with Izzy and return to Helen’s gymnastics lesson.

 

  • 15.00pm – Leave gymnastics lesson with both children and return home. Mother in law remarks that all I’ve done all day is drive the car.

 

  • 15.15pm – I sit down, open a beer and declare I’m not driving anywhere else today.

 

  • 15.30pm – Helen declares she wants to buy some loom bands and asks if I will take her to the shops. I refuse and we order them online instead.

 

Okay, so Saturday was quite a ridiculous day. I’d never quite had a day like that.

Even so, I see myself having to do more and more of this. The kids are going to want taking to more and more places and Helen will want to go and meet up with friends and Izzy won’t be far behind her.

That’s in addition to the gymnastics competitions and other interests they have. I’m also realistic to the fact their requests for transport are going to come 24 hours a day, 365 days a year as they get older.

Needless to say, I’m going to do it. I’d feel much happier knowing I was driving my 17-year-old kids around at night and that they had a lift then think of them stuck in the middle of nowhere and unsure how they were going to get home.

Yes, Saturday was just the start. When they hit the teenage years things will become really interesting. I’m just hoping I can persuade Mrs Adams to share the transportation burden with me.

Have you got teenage kids? Do you spend your life ferrying them around? Do your weekends look like the Saturday I’ve just experienced? If so, leave a comment below and tell me how you handle it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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8 Comments

  1. July 9, 2018 / 5:54 am

    Haha! You just described my weekends of the last 15 years it gets worse mate great read

    • John Adams
      Author
      July 10, 2018 / 5:04 am

      Yeah, I kinda thought someone with older kids would respond to this and say “just you wait”. Maybe I should invest in a really expensive car with mega comfortable seating and simply accept my fate as a taxi driver!

  2. Dave
    July 9, 2018 / 2:45 pm

    I can only endorse what Nige says – thin end of a very long and eventually thick wedge. As an example, for my daughters dance classes I estimate I have done over 50,000 miles – that’s before we get into my sons rugby etc.

    • John Adams
      Author
      July 10, 2018 / 5:03 am

      That’s an awful lot of miles. Truth is, if the eldest sticks with gymnastics, I can see us (ahem, me) driving similar distances. I guess it would help if both kids have the same interests! Although life isn’t that simple is it?

  3. July 10, 2018 / 8:23 am

    A universal truth is that we are motivated to learn in playful, joyful environments. The ability to complete any and every task is enhanced when we bring positive emotions into it. Many of today’s parents forget this truth or confuse “fun” with something trivial or requiring expensive lessons or experiences. My dad was playful and made driving around in a taxi, counting change for passengers, and doing math fun too.

  4. July 11, 2018 / 4:34 am

    Sorry to burst your bubble but things are only going to get worse. Not sure how things are different in the UK to Australia but high school here means things like early morning band/rowing/other sports drop-offs plus afternoon activities, and all the Saturday sports and other weekend stuff. Way too much time in the car and communicating with other parents via WhatsApp or texts about how you can share driving to stop everyone from going insane.

    I actually built my business (www.parachuute.com) – an app to help parents carpool amongst a trusted network to get kids from A to B – because I felt I was going insane trying to work and manage the family schedule. It can only be downloaded in AUS though – you will have to find a UK equivalent or get some serious carpool happening if you want any time to yourself on a Saturday. Good luck!

  5. November 21, 2018 / 7:53 pm

    Nice blog this very useful information, thank you for sharing with us. Thanks for the post !

    • John Adams
      Author
      November 23, 2018 / 6:18 am

      Glad you enjoyed the post. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.