Saturday, 28 January 2017

Travel Gear

I've been having a lazy kind of day, a stay in bed day. It was supposed to be a day where I got up early, where I went out, where I was active. Instead I stayed up late last night, visited with my friend Anne, then watched A Clockwork Orange into the small hours of the morning. I have to get up, though. My friend David is coming in a bit. We are going to discuss and test the gear that I need to take with me on our upcoming road trip.

It used to be just me and a couple of suitcases. Then it became me and my cane, and a couple of suitcases. After that it was me and my wheelchair, and a couple of suitcases. Now it's me, my wheelchair, my commode chair, and a couple of suitcases. However I am thinking about taking my power wheelchair along with a portable lift. I already have the ramp in the back of the truck, and all this stuff will fit.

My need for the wheelchair is obvious. My truck is already well rigged for it; I've done thousands of miles with hand controls. The commode chair is not so obvious. The reality these days is that transfers on and off a toilet are problematic. I don't want to have to ask David to lift me every morning. The commode chair works well, whether at home or in a hotel. It also lets me shower independently, a good thing on a long road trip. All we need is the proper type of room, one with a roll in shower.

The power wheelchair has gone with me a couple of places, the most notable being my brother Jim's property north of Edmonton. I was able to wheel about pretty well in the power chair, except for getting stuck in the sand every now and again. I'm thinking it might be useful on the road so that David doesn't have to push me all over the place in my manual chair. The only issue is loading and unloading it from the truck. That takes practice. Hence today.

The most recent addition to my traveling equipment is the portable lift. I'm not completely sure how it will impact things. It is designed to lift me in an out of my truck, or to be used in any other places where a lift might be in order, perhaps in and out of bed and such. The only problem is I cannot use it independently. It has to have an operator. That means work for David, and I am not sure I like that. On the other hand, it can lift me into the passenger seat of the truck, something David might be in favour of. We'll have to discuss it.

Oh, and I still have a couple of suitcases, plus a couple of transfer boards, plus my wheelchair booster pad, plus, plus, plus. Traveling with me, especially on a road trip, has become quite the adventure, and not all in a good way.

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