It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Fun*Run Time

It's ALREADY that time of year again: The ADAPT Fun*Run for Disability Rights is April 22nd 2012. Maryland's fundraising goal is $8,000 this year. Yes, that's right, $8,000

Donate $1! Donate $10! Donate $100! Donate $1,000! JUST DONATE so we can FREE OUR PEOPLE! I thank you very much for your support!

Monday, July 11, 2011

On Rolling In the Street: the Saga

Yet another horsey post. You're just going to have to put up with them, I can't help it! Lately I've been thinking about horses more then I think about botox, which is really hard to do, because when I think about Bentley I think about botox and how we can change it up so I can "get back in the saddle" again (I've been riding bareback) without feeling the need to cry. I wish I'd actually paid attention to "you have to stretch your adductors or you won't be able to ride a horse." They actually weren't kidding! But enough with the tangents...

Therapy Doc wrote a post yesterday that was very loosely about horses (and posted pictures like the one to the right that made me go OOOOO PONIES! and squeal a bit in my head, like I used to do out loud when I was 5) and a bit less loosely about riding her bike on the shoulder of a busy road.

Riding in the street and ponies: 2 things that are very closely related in my life. If I have the choice, of course I roll places on the sidewalk, but sometimes you are just completely stuck. Some scenarios: Say you get to the end of a block and a curb cut is either completely missing or being torn up by a construction crew. The one on the other side is fine. What do you do? Go home or roll back half a block to a driveway and then dash as fast as you can?

Snow is the worst because people tend to shovel snow into curb cuts and the amount of snaking back and forth between street and sidewalk is maddening. My mom lives in what could by some be considered a remote area, but really it touches one of the biggest cities in the state. So it's a little woodsy. I have no sympathy for you mom. I live in a more urban area compared to her, even though I'm not in the city. She once commented to me about how much easier it must be for me in the snow. I said "You have no idea. You have a car! People don't shovel sidewalks and bus stops!" The aftermath of snomagedden had me constantly praying for my life. The bus stop outside my building always gets cleared ASAP but when I got somewhere I'd discover their bus stop had 5ft of snow on it and so the bus couldn't pick me up to go home.

Some information: Paratransit will only drop you off within 0.75mi of "fixed route transit." That means a bus/light rail/subway/metro stop. It was designed to make accessible what is available to the able bodied and less disabled public. If somewhere isn't reasonably accessible to them (0.76mi, they're strict) paratransit won't go there.

Which brings me back to ponies. Ponies don't generally live close to bus routes. Can you imagine a horse trying to catch a bus? I was thinking of riding at ROSES but they're way out of range. Found this other place, called up twice and said "Can you tell me if you go to this address?" Twice I was told yes. But then I tried to book a ride. A no go. A google maps investigation revealed that they are 0.9mi from the closest bus stop. So I looked into getting a PA. He moved after a few weeks, which is just as well, because he had a thing for me and it was awkward. Must do a back post about that.

In the few weeks he was around, I stared at bus stops and buildings along the road. One day I spoke with a friend, a wheelchair user who likes to describe herself as being the size of an 8yo. "I think I found a place," I said, "but it is still 0.3mi up the road." I figured car drivers have a harder time seeing her, and if she would do it...

"You can't roll 0.3mi in your new chair?" was the response.

"Well there's no sidewalk, but the shoulder is really wide and the road isn't all that busy."

I would never roll in a lane. I'm nuts, but I'm not suicidal. I also would never do this in the dark, but this was May, or would never get dropped off at the closest place they would take me (0.1mi closer) because it is across the street, and I would never cross traffic in the middle of the road. This place is on the same side of the street, and it's actually next door. It borders on their hayfield. ARGH! They refuse to take me next door because although their property is well within limits, their driveway isn't!

"So what's the problem?" she asked.

"[I listed some people] will freak out."

"Well don't tell them."

Except how are the people at the barn not going to find out? They did freak out. But what would YOU do? Look for a new PA to pay $3o to drive you round trip or pay paratransit $3.70. You know what I'd do... We're trying to figure out how to get some sort of bubble placed around the place since their property is within limits. If it wasn't I'd let it go.

In the meantime I was convincing drivers to drop me where I was really going instead of next door, explaining the situation. Most of them were cool and understood to keep it on the down low. Until the last week of June when someone thought she was being helpful and called the address change into her supervisor. I'm lucky they didn't kick me off, but they're watching me, I'm on their radar.

So for now my trainer is picking me up from next door, but I'm still OK with rolling down the street. It's not rush hour, it's not busy, it's broad daylight, and the choice was pay a PA or get half hr massages, so I won't feel the need to cry [see 1st paragraph]. What would YOU do?


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