I never want to write about poo again.
I never want to have to talk to a stranger about pooing again.
However, for me as a wheelchair user, I find myself talking about poo with disturbing frequency. We stayed at a hotel downtown yesterday because we couldn't get into the hotel where we are staying the rest of the week due to their accessible rooms being fully booked. We decided that we wanted to come a day early to acclimatize to the time zone and just generally relax and get ready for a busy week.
The hotel downtown said, in answer to my question about accessibility that "yep, sure, no problem" the room would meet my needs.
I was lulled into a sense of trust by the peephole in the door. That usually means we're going to be OK. So, foolishly, or maybe because I was tired, I didn't look in the bathroom. By the time I did, it was too late to look for somewhere else. There was problem after problem after problem with the room. I could pee but not poo. I couldn't shave. I couldn't shower. My response was automatic and, in the situation, really appropriate: oh shit!
My bowels are well trained. They know what to do and when. So, early in the morning, I had to wake Joe up, we had to get dressed, we had to go down to the lobby, into the bar, push several chairs, which were blocking the washroom, out of the way and finally we made it to where I could poo. Then, we made our way back upstairs. Now wide awake. Now with no hope of going back to sleep.
Did I complain?
Of course I did.
Did they respond?
Yes, they did.
But, really, I'm as upset about having to talk about pooing with yet another stranger as I am about everything else. I wonder if non-disabled folk understand what an incredible privilege it is to just know that where ever they go, they will be able to poo when they want to. I wonder.
Because for me the sudden intrusion into what's essentially a private thing is becoming routine. Regular. I'm losing a bit of my embarrassment about this particular discussion. I get, now, why so many people with intellectual disabilities have no boundaries regarding what are appropriate topics of conversation. When you have private things discussed, private becomes public ...
So, I want a whole year or two without ever having cause to write a blog about poo or pooing. I want to never have to talk to another manager of anything anywhere about ca ca or ca ca-ing.
I'm in my new hotel now, I've already tested the toilet, on and off ... I'm good.
I want every hotel to have, in their discussion of serving the needs of disabled travellers a sign that says.
Couldn't be clearer could it?