Sunday, 6 August 2017

Bus trip?

Birthday outing?
A group I belong to is turning 30 and some members decided that they needed to make a fuss about it. There was discussion. Ideas were raised, considered, discarded as "too long a day", "too expensive", "not really", "people won't want to do that", and more.
I did not participate in these discussions. It is not my place to participate. If I could participate in what they eventually decided to do well and good. If I couldn't then - too bad.
The matter was raised again in the meeting yesterday. The committee had made a decision. The membership listened with no great enthusiasm - which must have made the committee wonder why they were bothering. 
A bus trip to visit an alpaca farm. The farm charges for visits so I am assuming it is the alpaca farm with the very small mill. People will get a tour of the farm and the mill and have the process explained to them. Yes, it could be interesting - if people listen. 
I won't be able to go but I hoped other people would like the idea.
But, as I was leaving the meeting yesterday, someone raised an issue with me,
     "Cat, have you any idea how accessible that place is going to be?"
The answer had to be, "No idea at all."
It had gone through my mind. I suppose I should have said something. The group has some older members - one is over 90 and mentally as  sharp as sharp. She would no doubt love to go but she uses a wheeled walker. At least two other members use them too. There are several others who would find rough ground or steps a challenge. 
It's a farm. There may be distances to walk as well. After the visit to the farm they plan to go to a nearby town which has an art and craft sort of reputation. That involves a bit of walking too.
And, is the bus accessible? Will people be able to get on and off easily?
What seemed like a good idea suddenly had potential issues for some members of the group. Yes, it had gone through my mind. I should have said something but I didn't.
It's time other people thought of those things too. The person who asked me can say something instead.

2 comments:

Melodye Traupel said...

It seems that most people don't think about accessibility until it becomes their issue or a loved one's issue.
Big Sister Cat

Jodiebodie said...

Why should you be the one who always has to provide the "teachable moment" or raise issues?

I was horrified to find out about another group for older people which liked to take regular bus trips to interesting places. The group seems to be enthusiastic about going out and adventuring but one of the places recently offering to provide an interesting outing had not thought about the potential audience: a group of senior citizens.

The host decided to hold a presentation in an area which was cold, draughty and no seats were provided. This caused great discomfort and dissatisfaction for the group because they were forced to stand at length. It put a dampener on what should have been a pleasant day out.

It's about time people start thinking of the needs of others and start showing some respect. I fear the urge to think of anyone but oneself is less prolific in society these days which makes me sad.

At least the group in your story are raising the questions.