Seattle Uber Driver

I was up in Seattle (primarily Bellevue) last week for a work conference and I had a great conversation with my Uber driver who picked me up from the airport. He asked if I had a family/kids back at home and I said no, it’s just my boyfriend and myself. He was shocked! He asked if I had any brothers or sisters and I said I have some half-siblings. I mentioned that I have MANY cousins and he said, “Oh? Do you want to have a competition?” I said I have about 17 first cousins on my mom’s side and they have over 20 children among them and that some of those “children” have children of their own.

He laughed and laughed and then he told me about his family.

He has 9 uncles. Each of them has at least two wives, some even having four or five wives. Each wife has multiple children (10, 12, 19, 20). His own father has three wives. His own mother gave his father 20 children, 12 of which did not survive.

I asked him if he knows everybody’s names and he laughed again. He said his own father will go through 5 or 6 names before calling him the right one.

He said last time he went back to Ethiopia to see his family, they had to borrow the neighbors houses for their family reunion. He said each family of, you know, 12+ people would take pictures and he said he was happy to just stand and take a picture by himself. I said, “You probably had the biggest smile” and he laughed and said “Definitely.”

I asked if everyone got along and he said that there is SO MUCH love in his family. Nothing but love. He was raised with a large sense of love and family and community. Except the wives of the same husband don’t necessarily get along and that’s always a competition. He said he always knew when it was going to be a night that his father stayed at their house because his mom would cook THE BEST food on that night. He laughed and smiled at the memories. I asked if he had a wife and he said, “No, but I think I would only want one. I think I could only really handle one!”

Moral of the story: Talk to your drivers. You could get some great stories.

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