>Observations, Updates, And Other Goofiness

>Here comes another giant pile of thoughts.

The other day, the oldies radio station was on and The Poppy Family That’s Where I Went Wrong came on. And, unbidden, my only thought that came out loud and clear was “oh that poor bus stranger!” At that point I just started laughing. I didn’t feel one bit of pity for the woman in the song…I just wanted her to shut up. Yes, go to sleep and forget him for a while. Then maybe that poor fellow who randomly selected the seat beside her can get some peace for god’s sake!

Maybe that’s because I’ve been that poor bus stranger, and we probably all have. You sit down, someone plunks beside you, and suddenly you hear their every tale of woe they have. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had lots of awesome conversations with seat mates on buses. But sometimes, oh lordy. I don’t remember if I ever wrote about the time I had to pretty much babysit a fellow passenger, but that was an instance of me being a poor bus stranger. I was glad I did it, but oh man. I think experiences like that turned that song on its head for me. The thing is I’ve thought it I don’t know how many times on a subconscious level, but this week, it came out loud and clear.

For some reason, one day I said something to Steve about “way down yonder in the Paw-paw patch.” Then I immediately wondered “what the heck’s a paw-paw? I guess it’s a kind of apple, but it’s funny how we just sing stuff and have no idea where it came from.

Last Wednesday I had an, um, interesting afternoon. Apparently my parking lot at work can get pretty ugly as hell in the winter, so the guy who drives me to work thought it would be good to get one of those accessible parking passes. At first I wasn’t sure if I felt right about it since I thought most people who use them have actual physical injuries or lung problems that prevent them from physically walking from A to B. But now that I think about it, knowing we could always park in the same spot would mean it would help my orientation. I could probably walk from car to door on my own, which would be pretty awesome. Plus, it would reduce the amount of time I’d be mucking around in the parking lot amid people who potentially aren’t the best drivers in the world.

So I decided to get one, and I have learned one thing for sure. The doctors I asked about this thing had no clue about it. I had to see the doctor I’m a not so huge fan of, and he scribbled down a note and told me to take it to City Hall. City Hall? How about no? This is done by the province I’m pretty sure. At that point he said he hadn’t a clue how it worked.

So I went to a new walk-in clinic we have, which makes me happy as hell that we have another clinic, and it’s being well-used. But the doctor there couldnt’ figure out what category I fit under, even though there’s a box for visual acuity. That’d be me. But he did the form, and all is right with the world. I have a pass, and will have a permanent one soon.

But that afternoon’s travels were full of crazy loopy things that kept happening to me. First up, as I entered the clinic, I ran smack into a chick who was desperately afraid of dogs. I mean she started hyperventilating and totally freaking out. I felt horrible because I had nowhere to go. We were squished into a tiny space between two doors.

But she made me roll my eyes when I was finished at the clinic and went to leave. She was still there, and sat right by the door, ya know, the exit door. So as I approached it, she started freaking out again! Hello lady, I have to go that way. If you’re so afraid of dogs, move the hell away from the door! You’ve been warned!

On my way down to the clinic, Trix had to go poop. I picked it up, but had no idea where a garbage can was. So there I was with a bag of poop in my pocket. Total suck. But I had to chuckle as kid after kid was rushed into the bathroom at the clinic. I think the parents thought *their* kids were causing the stench! Although I was embarrassed about having a bag of dog doo, I couldn’t help but snicker.

And in my final piece of adventures from that day, I went into the grocery store in that plaza. It used to be called Price Chopper, now it’s Fresh Co. Whatever. I went in to buy two things. Seriously, two items. The girl helped me, and then said she talked to her manager and her manager said I really should call ahead if I’m going to want help.

I’m sorry, did I have a list as long as my arm? No. I wanted to buy two items. I do not think I have to call ahead for something that small. Hell, I pick up more things at a convenience store than that. I would totally call ahead if I was getting a whole heap of things and needed an escort around the store. But two things? Seriously?

They have kind of been difficult from time to time, constantly asking “are you done yet?” when I’ve had 4 things on my list, but this was pretty offensive. In future, I’ll probably just avoid that store. If I’m such a burden, they can do without my business.

But on a happier note, there’s a Tim Hortons that opened up pretty close to our house. Oh baby. I see danger on the horizon. Resist the urge for Timmie’s! The girl was really nice there, although when I said I was blind and couldn’t find the Tim’s, she didn’t think I literally meant blind. Oh boy, she’s going to have stories when she gets home. I kind of feel bad for getting a little annoyed with her, but there were no pedestrians on that stretch of sidewalk, so I called the place, told her I was blind and her immediate response was “Well can’t you see the sign?” Poor girl, she felt really sheepish after that. So the moral of the story, people, is never assume the person telling you they’re blind is speaking in metaphor. Chances are they *are* blind. Or do more people just say “I’m blind” when they say they’re lost? Am I just oblivious?

And in another piece of happy news, my ailing Trekker is on its way back to the land of the living!

Here’s the scoop. I finally went to a store that had the means to voltage test the charger. Then, to my shock and horror, they said the charger was fine. We eventually deduced that it was that piece on the end of the splitter that started breaking so long ago. So, because of that series of things, and the three-way splitter mess, I was hesitant to call up Humanware and ask for any more parts. So I tried charging the PDA using my sync cable. But because the battery had drained so low, when it asked for power, my computer said it was asking for too much power and would not allow. It did this on a couple of machines. At least I’m hoping that’s what the problem is.

Well, with the buses completely changing routes in January, I was getting desperate. I’ve come to realize that that piece is likely only sold by Humanware. So I bought a new one. But it wasn’t $60 like the guy claimed, it was $35. You’d think sales reps in Humanware could get their facts straight. Let’s hope when it arrives, it’s the right part. But if it is, at the end of the day, my Trekker should be back in business.

I think that’s about it for now at least in this post. I have other ideas that’s for sure.

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8 comments
  1. >Hahahahahaha ok the dog poop making parents think their kids pooped cracked me up hahahaha! And man you run into some clueless and rude people, wow! Maybe you're just out in a lot more different places than I am.

  2. >The more independent travelling you do, the more of that sort of thing you'll run into. but it's not all bad. You'll also meet some very nice, helpful people. But some of the things people have the nerve to say/do to a disabled person are unreal. The type of stuff that would likely get you your skull caved in if you did it to anybody else.

  3. >Maybe since I go door to door, meaning transportation to door and back, I don't run in to that stuff. Who knows. Maybe I've just been lucky?

  4. >Door to door transport definitely is a factor. Cuts out the people you meet while walking, busing, cabbing ETC. Where you're going is also important sometimes. For instance, I find malls to be a moron haven. I've had more than one person in a mall walk up behind me and grab me. I even punched one of them in the chest years ago without even thinking about it.

    Another thing to think about is that you really haven't been blind that long. Carin and I were both born that way, so have been blind for about as long as you've been alive. More time equals more potential for all sorts of experiences.

  5. >For your edification:

    http://www.crfg.org/pubs/ff/pawpaw.html

    As for the store, I become more vertically challenged as the years go by. Never has someone suggested I call ahead if I need help with the top shelf or with lifting something I can't manage (like the 20 lb sack of cat food). That woman was way out of line.

  6. >The folks in that store have been cross and out of line several times. Let's just say they're lucky they have proximity to our home on their side. Customer service certainly isn't. Well, unless you count asking a real live customer for help so that you can get any service at all.

  7. >I'm glad I'm not nuts. Every time I get a little mad, I always question if I'm out of line or not.

    And Ro, you've had some doozers. Remember that para driver that wouldn't stop talking to you about MS even though you gave him six zillion signs that you were not down with that? I think we always see what happens to someone else as worse than anything we ourselves go through.

  8. >You're not nuts. I've run into idiots too but seldom anyone who works at the store.

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