As we progress through these uncertain times, this next blog post will not mention Covid or music. This is going to be about something completely different. Travelling Experiences using a wheelchair.
Travelling and gaining experiance
I would be happy to share with you tales of my travels around this small rock spinning in the vastness of space and time. There are a lot of blogs and travel websites written by people with various needs. They write to share information about their experiences, I guess, in the hope of encouraging and influencing others to do the same, which is fine. I don’t want to do this. If you want to read about how accessible a country is, there is information out there to gather, but you won’t find it here.
Fist time flyer, using a wheelchair
Travelling Experiences using a wheelchair. My first experience of flying was with the spinal injuries charity Back Up. I was lucky enough to fly to the US for one of their ski courses. It was interesting. I think there were eight or nine people with spinal cord injury (SCI), all on the same flight. This obviously took a while to get everyone on board and ready for take-off. I think it was sensible to be able to experience this form of travelling with an organised group. In fact, I had never left this green and pleasant land before. Apart from a wet week in Wales on Cub camp, I didn’t really enjoy it that much!
Spain here I come
Now I know I can fly, a couple of mates are having a joint stag do in Malaga. Yes, I can go; I know the drill of how to get on and off a plane. The morning of the flight arrives, and the minibus pulls up to pick me up. But there is a problem; there is no lift for my access. I have known most of the guys on this trip since primary school and have every trust and confidence in a number of them to carry me on and off the bus safely. I’m on, and suddenly we are on the motorway heading to the airport.
Malaga twice more
I visited Malaga the second time when courting my now wife. This time the journey to the airport from home was a lot easier involving a car. Arriving in Malaga, I assumed the area would be familiar, and I would know my way around. Alas no. I’m not sure how big Malaga is, but I didn’t recognise anything apart from the sea, which we all know waves….
A few years later and another flight to Spain sees me arrive back in Malaga with my now wife, and we meet with her family. We all stayed in the same complex, which was nice. Being now a regular to Malaga and thinking I must know the place pretty well, I am flabbergasted to realise I have no idea where I am; everything looks foreign to me……
As time moves on
Speed up by several years on this ball of rock we all call home. I can now confidently admit I have enough experience travelling abroad to know that flying is a pain. I have been to several countries, transatlantic 5 times now, South Africa and other European countries. With all the activities you can experience on holiday in a hot climate, I know sitting in the sun is not for me….. I couldn’t think of anything worse…. Vital wheelchair skills are the same in all the countries, but just the amount of times I need to use them is varied.
Coming up in the following weeks, further exploits around the Globe…