Right now I'm sitting here in New Glasgow fuming. My blood is boiling. And I'm mostly mad at another nameless, faceless disabled guy. I checked into the hotel, assured myself that the room was accessible and then got to a room with NOT ONE ADAPTION for someone with a disability. NOT ONE. The door to the tiny bathroom is too narrow for a chair, there are no grip bars by the toilet or grab bars on the shower, and the toilet was made, I'm sure for kindergarten kids. NOT ONE ADAPTION.
Now, you don't need to know this but I have to tell you for the story to make sense, I need an accessible toilet. It's manditory.
So I call the front desk and say, 'There is a mistake, I need an accessible room."
"That is our accessible room," I'm told.
"What?" I exclaim.
"There are no stairs, it's accessible," she says.
"But, but, I splutter, there is nothing in the washroom to make it accessible."
"Another guy who used a wheelchair stayed there and didn't complain." She says to me.
I guess I'm the ungrateful crip who wants to actually use the washroom at least once, maybe twice during my stay. I guess I'm not grateful for the fact that there are no stairs to get into the room. I wonder why they don't call all the rooms on the main floor accessible then but forget to ask because I'm upset.
So, I call every other hotel in town and they are all full.
Angry. At the hotel for booking me an accessible room even though they don't have it.
Furious. At the guy who stayed here before and was polite - he coulda thought of me and any other disabled person that would want to be able to stay.
Well they know now. They know that this is one angry crip in their hotel. And that's not ok.
Just as I'm finishing this the front desk calls, "Do you want us to go to the drug store and get an insert for the toilet so you can use it?"
"Um, yes," I say, "But don't ask me to be grateful or say thanks, cause that I can't do."
"No, no, we'll get it to you around six."
So the room has a tiny adaption. I feel like I've done my job for the next guy. They promise to 'explain' the room to anyone else who books it with a disability. Uh, huh, I'm sure.
But at least they will be able to go to the washroom.
And it's over. I'll spend the night and get out of here.
Funnily, I'm more exhausted by this exchange than I was from the days work.
Lifting yourself up from 'lesser' to 'equal' in the eyes of another takes a lot of energy and mental muscles that can't ever be left to atrophy.