Where we live: Ask and you shall receive
It never hurts to ask.
That’s the attitude that people with disabilities need to have.
My husband has multiple sclerosis and damage from a car crash in 2003. It’s changed our lives, but we can’t let it stop us.
When I looked for a handicapped accessible room recently in Mexico, I found one in our price range, but the confirmation noted that the resort didn’t have an elevator.
They couldn’t — or wouldn’t — guarantee an accessible room. What’s the sense in having one, then, you might ask.
We take his scooter with us, but we need a shower with grab bars.
When we succeeded, it was time to arrange a flight out of Allentown.
The first choice involved a bus to Newark. The bus didn’t have a lift and the company couldn’t guarantee they’d have room for the scooter in the cargo part of the bus.
We finally booked a flight through Atlanta, on row 36 on the plane.
One call to the airline changed everything.
Turns out, the airline has a narrow wheelchair to take people to their seat, and they moved our seats toward the front of the plane. No, not first class, but close.
At the airport, agents bumped us closer to the front to comfort seats. This time we were one row behind first class.
But the adventure doesn’t end. We wanted to go on a pirate dinner cruise, so a bilingual tour agent helped us to find a ship with a dinner table and a handicapped accessible restroom on the main deck.
That night, we paid way too much for a cab to the dock, only to find the boat didn’t have a ramp for the scooter. There was a plank almost a foot off the ground, with another step into the boat.
The “pirates” told us not to worry because they’d get us on the ship. We doubted it, but one said, “Argh, we’re pirates. We can do anything.”
And they did. They helped my husband onto the plank, and several pirates lifted the scooter right onto the boat. It was truly an enjoyable evening.
We almost didn’t go on the vacation. It seemed too hard. We almost didn’t go on the ship when the first one had steep steps leading to the restroom. But we asked, and people helped.
We’re glad we asked.