So far this winter the weather gods in Toronto have been smiling on us. That is unless you wanted snow. For me, who gets housebound in snow, I have been so thankful that the sidewalks and roads have not been impossible to navigate in my wheelchair thus far.
But I’ve always known that the weather gods at some point will let us know who is in charge.
And that day is finally here.
Yesterday we had our first real snowfall all winter. I didn’t even bother to try and go outside. But today, the sky is blue and the sun is shining and I couldn’t avoid trying to get around outside.
And I once again ran into my usual lack of accessibility issues along the way. Sidewalks sort of cleared but no way to get on or off of them. Side streets not even attempted to be plowed. Then riding on the street having the occasional person yell out to me to get off the roads because it’s dangerous. And me tempted to yell back to take a look at the sidewalks before judging me. Or tempted to just swear at the person. (I was proud of myself today as I didn’t do either of those. Maybe I am growing a little bit in maturity?)
I could feel my agitation rising though. However, having gotten stuck a few times in the snow, I needed help from passersby to push me out. Three times today I needed someone to help me get unstuck. And each time, I was reminded that most people are actually nice.
That was an important reminder for me on this day.
Another joy of having to ride through snow is that when I get home, my wheelchair drips snow and ice all over the floors. So all the way from my back door to where I am sitting in the living room there is a trail of water and snow and ice all the way. And around me where I am sitting writing this blog there is a puddle of sooty black water around me. Erinn loves that:)
Erinn and I also went and bought some groceries and I found myself getting hot under the collar again about accessibility. As usual, I needed to use the bathroom. When I got to the bathroom marked with a wheelchair, I was pleased that they thought about accessibility. But then I looked for the button to open the door and there wasn’t one. I was desperate to go so I just pushed the door open with my wheelchair and went on in. It was a disaster on the inside but it served my purposes so I guess that was great. Then it was time to leave. I looked everywhere for a button to get out and there wasn’t one. So I was literally stuck inside the bathroom with no way to open the door. I finally got it opened a crack and found myself yelling to whoever was walking by that I needed help opening the door. Finally someone stopped and helped me out.
But man is it ever embarrassing to need help getting out of the bathroom. It was a total and absolute fail on the part of Loblaws in terms of bathroom accessibility.
But at the end of the day I was able to pee and I’m no longer stuck in the toilet.
So that’s something I guess…
I’m auditing a course on grace. I thought I’d vent today and get that out of my system. I’ll talk more about what I’m learning about grace tomorrow.
I’ll see if I can manage not to swear at anybody in the meantime