Guest article written by Connie Jones, blogger for So I’m Legally Blind.
If you’re visually-impaired like I am, getting from place to place can be quite an undertaking, especially after the holiday season. Seriously! Most people have a few gifts to return and sales to catch, and that is not the easiest thing to do when you use public transit. All those bags! First, you have to get up the steps to pay for your ticket. What an ordeal of dropped bags, apologies to the driver for not having the exact change at the ready and if you weigh more than 100 lbs, yikes! Then you make the turn to find a seat, and so it begins. You apologize profusely to the other passengers as you bump into them with your bags, you search for two empty seats, one for you and one for the bags, all the while avoiding the eyes of the other passengers who are looking away from you as if to say, please don’t sit by me!
You’ve just gotta laugh! If you don’t have a good sense of humor and patience, it can get very frustrating. I’ve been through this before. Oh, I had big plans, made the list of things I needed to return, stores to return to or buy something on sale, the directions, etc. The first few bags aren’t so bad, people are very nice, accommodating, move out of your way. It’s when you begin to look like a pack mule, a Sherpa, that things begin to go entertainingly (for the other passengers) downhill. You either drop something, get stuck between the walkway with passengers or you can’t seem to get all of your bags around you as you sit down.
Personally, I didn’t like annoying my fellow passengers, doesn’t make for good karma. Although, most people could appreciate my dilemma; between carrying my school bags, and shopping bags with gifts to return, it could get pretty comical. Even during the holidays when people try to show more patience and kindness, that doesn’t mean people want all of your things spread around them and taking up their space. For me, the best way to go about my holiday returns was to break it down like a military operation. I’d do a little bit each week or on my way here or there and before you knew it, I was done. Now, I can get it all done so much faster because of the new sbX, the Access bus and other public transit options that I didn’t have before.