I don’t really know what is the general feelings from those having to use a wheel chair but in France they tend to keep at home. Not that they are ashamed or anyhting but due to how old is our country and the pavement and everything it is often really hard to get out. nothing is really made for them. I mean we are making efforts but there are things we just can’t do like broaden the streets and sidewalks everywhere. It has been done where it is possible and we still have to make much efforts but there will always be places where it is just impossible
Anyway I have been living in St-Etienne for 10 years now and there is a guy that I see anytime I go grocery shopping. Probably because the mall (malls always have a grocery store in France) is one of the few wide enough place for him.
He is young and obviously he got there because of a car accident. One of his leg look like it is stuck because somehitng happen, not because of a disease.
He is extremly fast with his wheel chair and don’t look at all like he is just hanging around. He always look like he knows where he is going and why. I always tend to look at him anytime he is around and I know my look can be disturbing when I really don’t intend to. I got often in trouble because of it. and I have been sorry for the past ten years eveytime I see him and look at him thinking that I really hope I don’t mean anything rude.
I had my Aïkido class yesterday after work and as usual I took my weapons with my.
Now if you can picture this:
I am 5’2″
The jo is about 4’1″
And then there are the other weapons that are shorter but all are in the same bag. You can imagine how long is the bag and how ridiculous I look walking around with it. People really stare at me. The worse is at a red light, people are obviously not just looking at me. Sometimes then even point their finger at me.
Yesterday I saw wheel chair guy down town and I thought we had just exchanged looks (of course I felt guilty again about the way I may have been looking at him) and he went the opposite way. I stoped at an ATM machine when I heard someone talking to me.
I neither knew this voice nor did I really understand the question but I heard the word “hunt” and I knew someone asked me about my weapons because people always think it is a gun (this alone let’s you know how unfamiliar we are with firearms).
and when I turned around wheel chair guy was there with a big smile.
I explained to him what it was and he asked me another question and we both went our way.
I am just happy about it.
First he talked to me and it made my day.
Second he does nto think that I give him bad looks or else he would not have talked to me.
I know it is stupid of me to fear it but I just don’t want to hurt people because of my looks specially if I can’t explain myself.
Yet I really don’t mind hurting people through what I say…
Ok it is not true. I don’t like it either.