I am driving from Exmouth to Plymouth, solo, unsupported, in a wheelchair, but I am NOT a wheelchair user. Anyone who thinks I should have taken a person who uses a wheelchair for whatever reason, should have done the last stage of the trip in the wheelchair.
I managed another 17 kms, and again only a fairly minimal travel in the desired direction, but I am still trying to get from Exmouth to Exeter. This is the killing stage of the trip. Obama and I are out of practice with traffic, or at least the level of traffic awareness you need for this sort of “adventure”. Unusually, a motorcycle rode deliberately at Obama and I. Most bikers are stunningly well behaved, and like boy racers, they may shift a bit, but their road awareness and road sense are pretty good. The 6″tail pipe Subaru’s come down to a restrained burble as they trickle past, and the custom bikes, especially the fluorescent pink Kwak lowrider in Exmouth and the assorted sports bikes cruise past with a smile, but this pillock decided to chop up Obama at high speed.
After this, I actually obeyed the Highway Code and just walked, in a restrained fashion, leading Obama from the danger side. Anyone who thinks they can drive a vehicle into my pony without going through me, can get stuffed. The downside of doing it legal is that on a road like the Exmouth to Exeter road, the traffic is totally blocked. My apologies to the bride, I hope she wasn’t too late, but I couldn’t take the risk of letting the cars go past as there seem to be more than enough idiots, mostly driving expensive late model cars, who will drive deliberately fast and close.
On the way back I led Obama on the pavement, facing the traffic. Three cars chose to play chicken, driving at me at speed and trying to clip my elbow with their wing mirror. They all learned that I don’t move. I have Obama to consider, and he doesn’t like it if I flinch. So, when you hit me, I will be grinning, and telling you exactly what sort of gutless pathetic pillock I think you are.
I don’t like this game, and I can only get away with it because Obama doesn’t understand the risks. Anyone who thinks I should take a person in a wheelchair to play high speed chicken, can try getting volunteers themselves. This trip isn’t about someone in a wheelchair camping, or demonstrating that they are happy to function on no food or drink breaks for 5 hours, which is my norm. Obama has regular food and drink breaks but since I don’t drink out of puddles or eat grass, I go without.
The good bits of the trip are the views, and learning just how good it is to travel with a pony. But most importantly, proving a point, that wheelchairs can go anywhere. Sure, you need a pony. Well the people who were trying to kill me on the road appear to need a ton, of high speed metal, spewing toxic chemicals, capable of 140mph, and accelerating from 0-60 in something really stupid to do a trip that anyone who can walk, could walk. So wheelchair users may need a pony to do the trip. So what. Shoes are mobility aids, and you all use them.