Sunday 8 January 2017 06.00 GMT
The first meal I delivered was a single lobster bisque to a penthouse overlooking St Katherine Docks. A cufflinked wrist thrust out from behind a door to retrieve it. My bike was lit by moonlight, the boats swayed in the harbour, and despite not seeing his face, I had the fleeting thought that this could be the most romantic job of my life.
I’ve been a Deliveroo rider for a few months – I started in the summer when the riders had just been on strike. Management were trialling pay per delivery rather than the hourly pay, and without guaranteed income it would leave workers earning under the minimum wage. The company abandoned the plans a few days later. I was surprised so few riders were talking about it, though they did tell me to make sure I got the hourly contract, to be on my guard and make a note of my hours.
Everyone’s always got time for a little chat at the lights
The relative flexibility works for me as I’m studying, and working as an artist and illustrator. Nearly everybody is doing something else. Fellow riders are students, actors, architects, coders, cleaners.
A friend of mine got me into it. He nodded at my bike and said: “Not put it to work yet?” I realised he had a point. Now I make around eight deliveries a night, cycling about 15 miles. There’s camaraderie on the roads and everyone’s always got time for a little chat at the lights. Unlike all the other cyclists who are always in a rush, we take it a little easier.