Thursday 05th August 2021,
Inspired Girl

A Man on a Curb, a Taxi Driver, and Insights from My Manicurist

taxi sign

Last week I had to go to Los Angeles for a quick trip. When I arrived, there was a slight issue with my rental car, and since I was exhausted from the 3 flights it took to get there, I opted to simply take a taxi to my hotel, and figure out the driving situation later.

The next morning I woke up rested and ready to take on LA! I had a busy day planned, and was excited to get to my first destination, the nail salon – my nails were in major need of TLC.

When I stepped outside of the hotel, sitting on the curb was an angry man. I smiled and said good morning, to which he replied, “Yeah. Real good. I have been waiting 20 minutes for a taxi. LA is awful. There are no cabs anywhere, takes them forever to pick you up, and the drivers aren’t very nice!”

His huff was loud and intentional, as he got up and said he was going back inside. He couldn’t deal with waiting anymore. My heart broke a little for him.

Moments after he disappeared into the hotel, a taxi pulled in the lot. I asked the bellman if we could try to get the man that was waiting. He called up to his room, but the man declined the cab. I eagerly hopped inside to a friendly driver named Ashmul. We began to chat a bit, he told me about his love for music, I told him about my love for writing, and all in all it was a very pleasant ride.

I told Ashmul of my schedule while in town, and asked him if he knew distances between my stops and approximate fairs. He told me the roundabout cost, and then happily said, “I will be your driver! You just call my cell phone as you are ready to be picked up, and I will be there in moments to get you.”

I was excited at the prospect of not having to wait 20 minutes to get picked up, and of course, the fact that Ashmul was friendly. I agreed, grabbed his card, and went to stop #1.

While getting my nails manicured, Ashmul came back in to the salon. He apologized for interrupting (totally unnecessary, but very gracious), and said, “I’m afraid I overestimated your next cab fair. I looked up your destination, and instead of $30, it should be just $20. I wanted to let you know.”

A huge grin came across my face, and I thanked him repeatedly for letting me know. I looked at my manicurist, Kim, who had recently moved to LA from Korea, and said, “Oh my gosh, he is just so nice!”

She innocently said back, “Because you are so nice, he is so nice back. You are nice to him. He is nice to you. That’s the way the world works…”

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About The Author

writer. speaker. dreamer. foodie. late night blogger. wife. mother. believer. Founder of Inspirista Lifestyle Design + Co-Founder of The Domesticated Dad + Author of Balance Book & Little Miss Negative...


  1. Susan June 29, 2011 at 11:09 am

    GREAT post! I love it! All about being positive and putting it out there. :)

  2. Jessica Morrisy June 30, 2011 at 2:26 pm

    You awesome! xoxo

  3. Patricia Travis July 2, 2011 at 10:10 am

    So simple, and so very true! Thanks for the reminder. Xo

    • Jennifer Tuma-Young July 8, 2011 at 9:07 am

      Thank you, Patricia, for reading!! I just loved the simplicity of my manicurist’s words, and had to share them!!

  4. Alexandre L'Eveille July 7, 2011 at 2:19 pm

    Such a great reminder! Thanks!

  5. Beverly E. Porterfield September 28, 2011 at 7:51 pm

    ““Because you are so nice, he is so nice back. You nice to him. He nice to you. That’s the way the world works…””

    Most of the time this happens in the real world. What comes around, goes back around. Kind words and a happy disposistion are very powerful that they can gain you more friends than you can count. This may be hard to do when you are feeling down, but it is much better to have friends than enemies.

    Beverly E. Porterfield

  6. Thom October 29, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    You were in L.A. and you didn’t let me know?! I would have taken you to lunch!

  7. Adriana April 5, 2012 at 8:54 am

    It happens to me all the time. Is the story of my life, really, changing environments one day at a time with kindness. Expecting the best on people and offering this sweet reminder of human respect. I believe the favor of God is all over people like you and I ;)

  8. Elyse April 10, 2012 at 6:40 am

    That is the way the world works. It is lovely to see the power of receiving what you put out there in a sweet and simple story. I am going to share this with my readers!

  9. Abbey Kane July 18, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    Well Jennifer, that is a real “nice” story and goes to show you can get a nice story out of a trip to anywhere. I enjoyed it.

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