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(DENVER, Colo., August 31, 2004) Mike from Russia, holds out a directional hand as Stan, a driving colleague, sprays liquid onto the tire of a fellow driver. Mike was trying to tell the driver to not move too far as they were checking for a slow leak in the tire. They eventually found the leak and Mike gave his colleague a portable pump to get him through til his next drive so he would not lose time or money. The drivers are very aware and helpful in this capacity. The Commercial Vehicle area adjacent to Denver International Airport is the staging area for all public access vehicles from limos to shuttles to cabs. It is here, in the cab line that the ecclectic international community thrives, argues and prays together. A humble and loud mix of people, mostly men, many from other countries, battling the turf that is actually hot asphalt and concrete resembling an active runway, where the energy is ceaseless. The complaints are tiresome. The languages variety and intensity lay heavy on the air as the cabbies extol themselves and their ambitions. The staging area holds 125 cabs while the hold lot has 25 additional and the terminal has 20, 10 in the west and 10 in the east. The wait is approximately 3-5 hours on a good day, 5-7 on a bad day with the possibility of sitting all day and not getting out as patience determines it is time to leave. This according to driver David Kumm also known as "the mechanic". Many drivers work 7 days a week, 16-24 hours a day going home only infrequently. (Photo by: STEVEN R. NICKERSON / ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS)

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