Saturday, 20 June 2009

Friday 19th June 09

Got up at a more normal time but Gill returned soon after taking out little one off to school... he cycles on the road with me, but on the pavement with Gill (I do not understand this) and as he was on the pavement, he crashed into a wall and banged his tummy on his handlebar stem and was quite traumatised and upset. So he didn't go to school today. I would have been a lot stricter, but Gill and I do have parenting differences and these days I usually back down instead of argue that my opinion is more valid or better.

I visited Country Fresh and picked up some fruit/veg shopping plus a good load of compostables.

A day or two ago, Ali had suggested that she might come to York today, so she got a train and arrived sometime after midday. I met her and her PA Kaisa off the train and spent the day as a tourist in York. We took a trip on one of the YorkBoats, two of which are wheelchair accessible, via a pontoon at Kings Staith. Kaisa didn't come on this, and had an hour free time (though still being paid!) but then came with us to a coffee shop which had WiFi, as Ali had some Uni work she had to send off, and hadn't had time back at home to do this. Then we went to find a place where we could meet again for tea (Slug and Lettuce) and Kaisa went again and Ali and I went to have a look at Artfulness on Goodramgate, but there was no access ramp available so we couldn't get in. The owner of the shop was very vague and not at all apologetic, and we had a similar response to the situation at Kyi-Po, the vegan shop where Ali would have bought some stuff, had it been easy to get in. I find this situation embarrassing and it makes me angry that shop owners don't think of wheelchair users who wish to get in 'under their own steam' as it were, and make a wooden ramp or have one made. Don't they realise that places with good access get more visits from the increasing numbers of people using wheelchairs (ageing population) and the shop makes more money? Duh! Is it rocket science? No, it's a £20 wooden ramp. And the lack of thought to provide a ramp is discrimination, and verging on illegal.

So we went to another shop which was lucky to have level access, and Ali bought herself something there. We met Jonathan and Charlotte in Kings Square, and chatted until it was time to go to the Slug and lettuce, where we ate for half price as Ali had found a coupon online, and printed it off. Filling and good company. I get on well with Kaisa too, despite her lack of English meaning some things go over her head or need explaining.

Then back to the station where they got the 8.30 train, and I was back home by 9, full and tired from lots of walking.

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