It was a long week, lots to be done, lots to be accomplished all mixed in with unexpected surprises, some good, some not so good. Today is a transition day. We prepare for a week long trip to Saskatoon. On the one hand, we both love Saskatoon. On the other hand, we've got to get there. That means airplanes and airports - always a gamble at best. Sunday, early morning, we begin the process of 'getting there.'
This is where it is clear that the physical aspects of travel are not the problem. We know what to do, we know how to make it work. Trouble is, we need some assistance to get it done. This shouldn't be a problem because their are people who's job it is to help us with this. You'd think that, as their jobs depend on people with disabilities travelling they'd want people with disabilities travelling.
And many do.
Some greet us.
Some ask us what type of assistance we need.
Some help us because it's what they like to do.
But some don't.
Some seem to think it's their job to look helpful - not actually be helpful.
Some seem to think that their training gives them the right to look at us and determine, from a professional 'once over' scan what it is we need ~ and give us that, rather than what we need.
Some seem to think that their certificate in 'airport' helping out gives them medical expertise and the right to ask intrusive questions about things that are none of their business.
Some seem to be bothered that we've interrupted their conversation on their cell phone.
The process of travel involves the process of putting one's self at the mercy, first of chance, then of another's 'care'. That gets harder and harder for me to do. Joe, too, said yesterday, "I wonder who the Airport God's, in their infinite mercy, are going to send to help us?" Again, it's not the disability. It's not the mechanics of the trip. It's the attitudes and the personalities of those we will encounter from arrival at the desk to being seated on the plane. That's the issue.
So we've decided to go see a little film out of Norway called Kon Tiki just to remember that, whatever happens, we'll be in a seat on a plane, not strapped to a balsa wood raft. We're assuming a better trip.