The Right Passenger
The Right Passenger
The taxi driver Nadeem Riaz, is driving through Manhattan looking for new passengers. Then on a corner he picks up a couple, Riaz thinks that the boy could be from South Asia because of his brown skin. The girl I Caucasian. Riaz thinks that the couple may have had too much to drink, and that is the reason for the boy to be showing token respect for Riaz. Then Riaz starts hearing lips smacking and the uncomfortable sound of cloth squirming, and because of that he decides to lengthen the trip.
Riaz asks the boy if he is married, but the boy just waves him off, which makes Riaz want to kick them out of the taxi. The girl gets of first, so it is just the boy and Riaz left in the taxi. They start talking about how they both use the country, and the boy says that even if he trifles with this one girl, Riaz is messing with the whole country. When they arrive to the boy’s street he is sleeping, and when he gets out of the car he do not pay Riaz the $42. 80 he owe for the ride.
Nadeem Riaz is a taxi driver who has been driving taxi in eight years, he is an immigrant in America and has a green card so he can work. Riaz seems to be a nice man, who believes in tradition and that the boy he is driving should be in a marriage, set up by his parents. Riaz believes in God, and listens to the Holy Quran so he is Muslim. He begins making assumptions about the boy; he should be married, he is probably from a rich family and his parents are probably fat and sated. But he admits to himself that he does not really know and he cannot be sure.
By admitting that he does not know anything about the boy and his family shows that he is not a man with prejudices. One of the times when the boy talks to Riaz with a brash tone, Riaz is thinking that if he were a better man, he would kick them out of his taxi. But he decides to finish his job. This shows that he is a man who takes his job serious. When Riaz and the boy are having a discussion about living in USA, the boy says that Riaz is using the country, which makes Riaz defending why he is doing what he do to provide for his family.
This shows that Riaz is proud to be able to provide for his family, being a taxi driver may not be his dream job, but he gets by. In the end where he let the boy go without paying Riaz shows that he is good of heart. The discussion Riaz and the boy have, makes Riaz think about some things he usually does not think about. This young boy comes in with his big mouth and modern opinions and tells Riaz that “even if I’m trifling with her, she’s only one American – you’re messing with the whole country! ” To make an accusation like that is unrespect full.
He comes in, say a bunch of stuff about a man he does not know, and thinks he can say these things without any consequences for the poor man who dreamed about this beautiful country and believed that he could make a new start. I do not think it was Riaz’s intention to be a taxi driver when he first came to America, but that is the way it turned out. And then this boy comes in and tells him he is messing with the whole country, and when the boy said what he wanted he tells Riaz not to think too hard about what he said.
But even after saying these things to Riaz he just gets out of the taxi without paying what he owe. To come from an eastern land, would be the same as coming from the poles to the tropics. The culture is very different from one another, if you take Nadeem Riaz as an example you can see that he believes in arranged marriages, and respect for the elders. Back in his own country he was a respected man who owned a spare- part shop, and now he is a simple “cabby”, one of thousands of taxi drivers.
Nadeem Riaz comes from the land Pakistan where 97% of the population are Muslims, that is a lot of people sharing the same belief and have the same values. For those people to come to a land where 11% does not have a religion, and the ones that believe in god are a mix of protestants, Jews, catholic and so on, it must be very confusing. Also the laws in America are very different from the laws in Pakistan. So for example coming from an eastern land to America can be a huge challenge, like it would be a huge challenge for Americans to live in Pakistan.
University/College: University of Arkansas System
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 27 October 2016
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