At my local movie multiplex, all the various theatres are wheelchair accessible. There are two very large halls, however, where you have to take a windy little hallway around the theatres and enter from the front rather than climb stairs and enter at the back. Both have accessible doors whereby you push a button and the door automatically swings open.
At theatre 8, where we usually go, the door opens and you enter and then have to make an immediate and hard turn left. Every time I go through it takes several back and forth adjustments in order for me to position the chair to easily turn. Going out is similarly difficult, it's just hard to manoeuvre through the door. It's all made more difficult by a door that stays open as if one is sailing through. It always closes on me before I've adjusted the chair and gone through.
Then, one day, Joe was going through the other of the two double doors and I just followed him through. No sharp turn, no trick driving, easy access. Ever since that's what we do.
There was nothing much on television tonight and I got some big news today (which I cannot share right yet) and was very hyper. We decided to slip out to see a movie to distract me from the 'buzz' of what happened (which I cannot share right now). We were just going to make the start of the film so once we'd bought a ticket and were headed in, Joe said he'd meet me in the theatre with the popcorn and drinks. This left me, for the first time, going alone with a theatre staff who walks me through the interior labyrinth to the theatre front.
When we got there I asked him to simply hold open the other door. He looked at me and blinked. I gave him a second to respond and instead of saying anything he just pointed to the disability button to open the door. I said, 'Yes, but I'd like to go through the other door ...' Before I could explain further he said, 'But wheelchair people are supposed to go through that door, not this door.' I said, 'Wheelchair people can go through whatever door they choose.'
He sputtered, I thought of explaining and decided not to. Really, do I have to explain why I wanted to go through that door? What if I just liked going through left doors rather than right doors? What if I like to match my doors to my politics - left please? Who cares why I wanted to go through the left door, who cares that I have a very good, very rational, very sound reason ...?
So I broke a rule today. I didn't go through the wheelchair people door. I went through the regular people door. I feel so scandalous, so rebellious, so, so, um, dirty.