Alexand, a Sydney taxi driver, had never received a $10 tip before. And I’d never given one of that size.

But that’s exactly what happened on a trip I took to the airport recently.

I’d had three hours sleep and was facing a flight and running two events that same day. Typically I don’t describe myself as a morning person.  Alex laughed, telling me he is up at 1.30am every day to drive his taxi.

Alex then went on to provide sensational customer service. He offered me the option to sleep during the trip or for him to stop and buy me a coffee or energy drink.

I declined both and listened as he told me why he is so passionate about his life and the opportunities he has created for himself. Through driving a taxi while most of us sleep, he’s already funded a secure home for his three children in Sydney that he has renovated himself.

Calculating a year out from our journey, he says he will have earned enough money to fulfil his dream of running his own restaurant in Thailand. His number one passion (outside of his children) is food and the joy he gets from cooking.

To speed up his time frame, he’s reinventing his taxi to become a ‘personal transportation service’ with bold, creative business cards and offering a premium service. I, for one, will be booking his services whenever I am in Sydney.

At the end of that journey, we’d both made a decision about the fare. He’d decided to waive my booking fee, and I’d decided to contribute to his dream.

Alex didn’t just drive me to the airport, he took me on a journey.

Persistence and determination gets you everywhere and Alex’s passion was the inspiration I needed to start my day. It’s the best $10 I have invested in a long time.

Check out more of Melina’s blog posts for The Pulse here.

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