The male Dual G (gimpy and grumpy) has long noted the frustration of navigating an able-bodied world when hemiparetic. He gave up using awalking stick about a year ago. One thing the stick did for him was signal to the world that he was mobility impaired. Most people responded with patience and understanding, although it wasn’t universal. Heaven help any handicapped person in a crosswalk during Silicon Valley commute time or when moms are taking their kids [late] to school.
The female DG faces different hurdles (although she shares being a crosswalk target). She’s newly appreciative of the larger handicapped bathroom stalls – makes it easy to get the scooter in and out – while perplexed at how heavy most doors leading into restrooms are, even those specifically marked handicapped. Luckily she has just enough muscle power to open the doors with one arm.
One trap that has bothered them both is the yellow bubble mats that often lead into a crosswalk and other areas were the terrain changes.They’ve caused the male DG to trip, particularly when his left foot is tired and dragging. The female DJ came upon them a bit too quickly when she was first learning how to drive her scooter and almost went head over handlebars.
They were both puzzled over who was being helped with these yellow markers? Today, she got an answer thanks to Beth Foote, who’s one of the associate rector at their church. It’s a marker for the blind. Of course that makes sense, a sensory signal that compensates for the lack of visual cues.
Photo by Chris Gulker (who’s shadow is pictured)