Yesterday was the taping of my first TV show, “Living Well.” I had been planning for this show for months; booking guests, planning the questions, doing pre-interviews, working with the station manager on the show “open” as I learned they called it (it’s the opening sequence of pictures to music). The day arrived and at the last minute, my schedule changed and I was unexpectedly rushing to get to the TV station. As I hopped in a cab, clutching my phone and trying to look up the address of the station to give the driver, he said, “You know, that stress is going to kill you!”
I stopped in my tracks, looked up and saw the face of an aging, but very pleasant looking man. He looked to me to be about in his 60’s and I said, “Yes, well, I’m in a rush. Can you take me to 3025 Washington Street? I think it’s Dudley Square.”
“No!” he exclaimed. That’s Egleston Square. Yes, I will take you.”
I started to try to suggest a route to take, explaining that taking the highway was a bad idea. He immediately said in a friendly but stern way, ” I have been driving a cab for many years. I will take you. I know the best way to go. And, do you know I have never used GPS?” He smiled at me while looking at me in the rear view mirror. I realized arguing would do no good and quite frankly, I was happy to let someone else worry about getting me there. I realized out of some stroke of good luck, I had found the one wonderful cab driver in the city of Boston, and I needed him now more than ever. I sat back in the seat, drank my iced tea, relaxed and had a snack.
He asked me why I was going to the station. Now, you must realize, I am not the kind of person that talks in cabs. I like to go where I’m going and not really chat ( if you’ve seen Elaine from Seinfeld in a cab, that’s me). But for some reason, I was so grateful to this man, I was in the mood to talk. “I’m off to do my TV show, “Living Well. It’s a show on health and wellness.”
“Ah, health! This is a real challenge for people today,” he said. I couldn’t quite make out his age or the origin of his accent but I knew he wasn’t from the United States. “Everyone is always in a rush and there is so much eating of garbage food! Whatever happened to eating healthy? THIS is so much of the problem these days.”
I sat back and literally shook my head. How was it that I found the only cab driver in the city that was not only competent but also was a health nut, all while on the way to tape my first show? This was too much. I pressed on.
” So, where do you get your interest in health?”
” I was raised to eat healthy. In Greece where I am from, we cook with greek olive oil, we eat fish, GOOD fish, not the kind you see here that is painted to look fresh. And, even though meat is eaten too, I don’t eat meat. Eating meat is just bad karma. ”
Ok, so now that was getting WAY too weird! I don’t eat meat either. How were all these things lining up?
The rest of the drive he went on to share his favorite recipes that involved lentils, olive oil, garlic, fresh bread, good wine, healthy cheeses, fish and eggs. We talked about the popularity of the Mediterranean diet and he said he’s eaten like that for years. He shared that he was 82 (!) and that his doctor, upon seeing him annually exclaims, “You are so healthy! You give me no business!” (you have to imagine him saying this with the accent. Too much).
As we were getting closer to the station, I almost got up the nerve to ask him to come on the show. I could see him with a white apron, in front of a counter with saute pans and big pots, surrounded by vegetables, beans and fish, talking the viewers through easy, healthy recipes. Although I didn’t ask him, I did leave the cab with a great sense of faith in the universe. No matter how crazy things are, stay connected to that bit of faith that things are not all in your control. And this is a good thing.
My first show of “Living Well” will air tomorrow on the Boston Neighborhood Network in Boston, at 7 am and every Friday thereafter. I will share the link on my Bare Bones Yoga social media pages, my website from You Tube, where it will also be viewable.