People on wheels
It’s not often that I can find anything remotely negative to say about Cyprus but I have to admit to being so very disappointed recently at the facilities in some of the areas here/taverns etc, for people who need to use wheelchairs.
I”m counting my blessings: nursing a nasty two fractures and bad bruising on my left knee, I currently need to use a wheelchair purely to take the strain of my recently repaired spine while the knee/leg repairs. This is a proverbial pain in the butt BUT I’m frustrated not for me but for the people who aren’t able to look forward to the day when they can discard the chair/crutches – which I can (and am eternally grateful for).
I’ve learned three very big lessons in the past few days:
- using a wheelchair makes you invisible to the majority of people. I’m not sure if they are simply scared of the speed at which you travel or frightened of ”catching ” whatever the illness it that you have which has put you there – but you are invisible
- What constitutes an accessibility ramp to some tavernas, is like hiking up the side of the steepest mountain to someone in a chair! And let’s not even get started on how difficult it is to come down the ramp – especially when it’s only meters away from a main road and there is no barrier to stop you! (or perhaps tony simply pushed me at high speed for a laugh?!).
- DON”T have roots! This is a very personal one. To be ignored is awful coz I love to chat. To not be able to get to the loo, is painful coz we all need to go – but to have horrible roots, to add to this and have the people looking down on you, looking down onto your roots, is plain embarrassing!
This is why I drink.
Which is why I fall.
Which is maybe a pattern forming BUT I stand firm that people on wheels are PEOPLE, with their own precious stories, humour, bad habits, needs and joys. Please, next time you see someone in a wheelchair, please smile at them/ask if you can help them , and be pleasant – or I’ll invent something to add to the wheels of a chair which REALLY hurt when the wheels run over your toes!
…and Cyprus, PLEASE do more to enable this beautiful island for ALL Visitors. Thank you.