neyronrose (neyronrose) wrote,

challenging travel

Got up, got ready to go to physical therapy.  The power had apparently been out that morning, and went out again when I was on the computer.  I decided I might as well leave the computer off.  The cleaning lady, S., came, and we talked while I ate breakfast and listened for the paratransit bus.

I wheeled the wheelchair over to the stairs between kitchen and family room, only I wheeled a bit too far, and the wheelchair started to go over, too.  If I hadn't already been sort of standing, and been able to put weight on my right leg, I would have fallen over and broken something else.  I got onto the walker and pushed the wheelchair back up into the kitchen.

I was on my walker, in the family room, when the paratransit driver rang the doorbell.  S. talked to her while I gathered my things and opened the garage door.  The driver refused to take her bus up the driveway.  "I can't walk down to the bus on my walker," I said.  The tile folks' truck pulled up behind the paratransit bus, which was blocking the bottom of the driveway.  She still didn't want to take her bus up the driveway.

I asked S. if she could bring my wheelchair out.  The driver took my walker, and S. pushed me down the driveway.  The driver lowered the lift, which bridged the bumps and dips between driveway, gutter and street.  I finally got in, and we headed off, so the tile folks could get up the driveway.  I hope that the younger guy I had asked about moving the van last time got a good look at how difficult mobility is for me.

Physical therapy was kind of busy, but I made various calls while I had the hot pack on my ankle.  I called the GLBT organization office at [local university].  I identified myself, and asked who I was talking to.  "This is L.," she said.

"Oh, you're the historian this year.  Do you guys know I need a ride to the reunion tomorrow?"

"We know," she said.  "Somebody will come pick you up."  I didn't get a specific name, and S. is the only student currently at the university who knows how to get to my house.  They have my street address somewhere, though, I'm sure.  I called E.M. from the bookstore.  Saturday's a day when the bookstore sells all the books you can fit into a bag at a special price.  They're smallish bags, but people manage to pack a surprising amount of books into them.  She called back later, and we arranged for her to pick me up and take me to the bookstore Saturday afternoon.  The bookstore is right down the street from [local university].  If the kids crap out on me, I can just have E. drop me off at the university when we're done helping out at the bookstore.

It would be nice to see some of the alums again, but it's more the kids I'd like to see.  I missed them horribly over the summer, and these two months into the semester.  H. is doing a semester in Norway, so I wouldn't have seen her anyway, but it's M.'s last semester, and there are other students I really want to say hi to, and get to working with regularly again.

I fired S. as my secret love child because I didn't hear from him all summer.  I still maintain that I would have heard from him frequently if I was another twenty-year-old guy.  As I haven't heard from him, I don't know if he fired me as his fag hag.  He knows I would have been there for shopping or road trips or whatever.  I think he was afraid to get my reactions about the kind of guys he dates.  I try not to be judgmental, but I'm very fond of S., and was horrified to hear that a boyfriend of his had threatened him with a crowbar.  He knows I think that he should be dating men who will treat him well.  I just don't think he believes he deserves to be treated well.  I'm not his mother, but all the other students of the GLBT group who are friendly with him were also concerned about his choices in men.  We were unanimous in worrying about his safety.  I make judgments fast enough if it's someone's physical and mental well-being at risk.

Back to the present day, I remembered most of my own exercises for physical therapy, which was good, as there were four or five patients and just K. there as therapist.  I heard the one patient speaking on the phone, and recognized that she was speaking German.  I was understanding words here and there.  I told K. that I'd have to catch up on my soap operas.  When the young woman was done on the phone, K. said, "Katja, here's someone who's learning German," or that I was a fan of German soap operas, or some such.  I explained that I watched Verbotene Liebe for Christian and Olli, and Alles was zahlt for Deniz and Roman, but that I'd gotten into watching the whole shows.  She said she wasn't into soap operas.  It was a pity, because I totally would have snagged her as a translator.

I told her that I'd learned words about what was going on with the characters and how they felt: "verliebt," "trennt," "angst," "sauer," "peinlich," and so on.  She looked like she understood the words I was saying, unlike D.S. from garden club, who can't figure out what the heck I'm trying to pronounce.  I was telling the therapist that I just told D. to close her eyes during some parts of the Verbotene Liebe scenes.  I said it had been Christian and Olli, but it was actually those Olli and Tom clips she translated for me, the ones where Henriette first came to town.

After physical therapy, while I was waiting in the lobby, I called S.M. from garden club, who reminded me that garden club was next Thursday.  I had scheduled a physical therapy appointment for then, so I changed it back to Friday.  We're still not clear on whether Dad will take that day off after all, since Mom has to work.  Grandma's S.'s birthday party is on the Saturday.  Mom has to work that Sunday, too.  I hope Aunt A. will be able to make it to the party.  Probably Aunt L. will take her, or Aunt P.S. or Aunt P.T.

I was done physical therapy at 3:00.  I went back to change my appointment at 3:30, then went outside.  I listened to my iPod, periodically questioned by passersby heading to the doctors' offices as to whether I needed help, or had a ride.  "Paratransit will come anytime," I said to them.  At 4:15, I called the paratransit company.

"You're scheduled for a 4:15 pick-up," the woman said.  It had been 4:00, actually, but they do their schedules a little differently than they tell the riders, apparently.  "Your driver should be there in five or ten minutes."  He showed at 4:30.  The woman driving that morning had put in my walker and wheelchair without strapping either down.  I'd transferred to a seat, and put the seatbelt on, but most of the drivers still secure the equipment.  She actually put the walker between the seat next to me and the seat in front of that.  I put it across the aisle, between those seats, as I didn't want to have it constantly banging into me.

This afternoon's driver attached a strap to one of the legs of the wheelchair, but didn't tie down the walker at all.  He must have been well into his seventies, and was having issues with some of the other drivers on the road, one of whom tried to pass him on the shoulder as he was attempting to turn into the other passenger's development.  To be fair, I would have had issues with that, as well.  We got back to my house in one piece, the bus in one piece as well.

I got into the house, then realized I had no way to get into the kitchen, as the wheelchair was in the garage.  At least I could get to the bathroom.  Mom said she'd stopped at a Wal-Mart between work and home.  I said I wanted to get into the kitchen to get a painkiller and possibly something for anxiety.  She said I'd figure out a way if I wanted to badly enough, and that the captain's chair was in the kitchen.  "It's on the other side of the kitchen," I said.  If I have a chair that doesn't roll, or has brakes which are set, I can get up into the chair and pull the walker up after me.  There just weren't any chairs in reach.  I got on the laptop and caught up on things until Mom got home.

I've definitely had better days.  At least I finally got my painkiller.  I have hours and hours of soap opera to catch up on.  I want to go over my latest editing job, by S. Michael, and do the formatting and spelling checks.  It's pretty typical in style, with those one-word sentences, and the ways the characters talk and think.  It's m/f, which is different.  I like S.'s work, which is why I asked for it to edit.  I hope I have a more relaxed evening than the day was.

Tags: family, medical, rambling

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