When Ricky and I go somewhere we scope it out in advance. Are there stairs? Are the doors standard width? Do the elevators work? What’s parking like? When we started planning for this trip, we were a bit worried about the travel. How would the plane ride go? We’ve never flown together, and flying can be very stressful for someone with a disability. You have to give up your chair, and you are completely at the mercy of others. That would be like giving someone your legs and trusting that everything will be OK. However, the travel went fine. The trip went smoothly, and we hopped into our taxi to come to the hotel. I was reunited with my state teacher friends, and we all got comfy to go to the opening reception and the city tour. And then the buses came. Buses… with steps. We don’t do steps. I knew that everything would be taken care of in terms of the rest of the week, but I didn’t think to double check about the reception and tour. I was doing a million things to prepare, and I didn’t follow up. Of course he told me to go on. They called him a taxi. He said to go with my friends and he would catch up. I got on the bus, but I felt bad as he sat there. (No, he was not going to let me stay.) Other teachers offered to go back with me, but I thought he would catch up. I went to the reception. No Ricky. He couldn’t get a taxi there. It didn’t show. Then they called a shuttle. It didn’t show. So I attended the reception and the tour without him. It was bittersweet. I was glad to be with friends, but he
deserved to be there too. I did not enjoy today as I should have. I knew Ricky was back at the hotel ordering room service that he didn’t want. He was the one supporting me when I was going through this process. He’s a history buff and wanted to see the city today.
This week is about friends AND family.
Tomorrow, I have a day at the Smithsonian and then a reception with the Bidens. THEN, I’m going to see the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, The MLK Memorial, and the WWII Memorial all over again… with Ricky. I’ll post more pictures tomorrow.