Recently I have been challenging myself to take bigger steps toward independence. Last week I took the biggest step thus far in the form of a journey to Sophie’s house aided by my power chair and GPS.

The first problem I came upon was that of initially orientating myself such that I could follow the prescribed route. This was mostly hassle free, I established that I was going the correct way by watching the distance to the next waypoint decrease as I moved.

I continued to follow the route for some time without issue, until I was required to cross a busy street with no provisions for safety. Rather than take the risk, I decided the safest course of action was to continue along the road and allow the navigation system to calculate an alternate route.

This alternate route took me to an intersection with a pedestrian crossing. While this is a lot safer than attempting to cross a road without such facilities, I now had to contend with two rather large curbs.

The first of these curbs was at the edge of the crossing, it was only with the help of a courteous commuter that I was able to continue from this point. After making my crossing I was confronted by an even larger curb at the other side, thanks again to another commuter I was able to continue in my journey.

Having conquered these two obstacles, the rest of the journey was straightforward. It was a rewarding experience and I’m glad I made the effort and took the risk.


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