Words: Virginia Blackney
Freedom From Fear 2016: Part 2
The above 2016 Australia Day pledge made by Melbourne band, The Basics appeared on my Facebook feed in the morning and resonated with me as a timely, positive take of a controversial ‘celebration’ also referred to as ‘Invasion Day’ by some of my friends. You may have also noticed I borrowed Deng Thiak Adut’s Australia Day address focus for this two part piece: ‘freedom from fear’. I had read the transcript of this speech and felt, again, this was timely and poignant even in relation to my little UBER experiences. What does ‘freedom from fear’ have to do with my experience? As a female driver, I am a minority, it is a little out of the comfort zone, and there are questions surrounding ‘pushing the boundaries’ regarding safety.
Trip 1: Hipster Hipsters
“Oh! How exciting!”
Hipster hipsters loving their first UBER trip with a woman driver. I dare say, they were pretty gorgeous and lovely. Going to a BBQ on the other side of Fremantle, and twenty personal questions later we arrived at their destination. While I was happy to answer the questions they were actually quite intrusive in their nature but I had a choice and the hipster hipsters were enthusiastic and curious. The change to an iPhone also helped with no map or app issues.
Trip 2: Hey, I know you?!
Again, I pressed ‘Go Online’, and accepted the next trip. As the group opened the passenger door I recognised two of them.
“Hey, I know you?!”
“Haha! What are you doing?”
It was pretty fun, I was a little shy to share with this group.
Trip 3: ‘Straya!!’
Drunky Monkeys on their way out. Guys and a girl pretty much wasted and celebrating ‘Straya Day!’ I don’t think it would have mattered who the driver was, they wanted “Tunes! Loud!” And to be at their destination as quickly as possible. While my little car was in no position to drag off another car, or do the requested burn out, their hopes for this did provide a laugh.
Deng Thiak Adut mentioned in his Australia Day address a “willingness of most in our community to be accepting, tolerant, inclusive and welcoming.” For me, on the 26th of January 2016, I would like to say my UBER experiences have positively reflected these ‘freedom from fear’ ideals. I’m sure this may not always be the case however presently ‘evolving the way the world moves’ could be perceived as just another platform for respect and equity for all.