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  • Writer's pictureErin Clark

Signs of Spring

Signs of spring: tulips, sunshine, men solving my wheelchair problems (even ones I don’t have)!

10 degrees, no wind, is the bare minimum temperature I can get around outside freely in without my rims getting so cold my hands freeze off. When the temperature hit 15 this afternoon, I went grocery shopping like it was a holiday!

Grocery shopping is my favourite daily-routine activity. All winter I relied on a delivery service I am so thankful exists. But I missed everything about doing it myself —including asking the man passing by to reach the turbinado sugar on the top shelf.

The sidewalks between me and the store are missing chunks where some utility company has dug them up and left them raw. Knowing they were there, I headed one street up only those sidewalks were ripped up, too. A holiday Inn was in front of the worst sidewalk so I went in and asked the manager if he would help me by asking the city to either repave or require a plank of wood to be put over the seasonal mud pit. The city cares more about businesses than they do about me. He was happy to do it!

I led him outside, and as he crossed the threshold he went, “ahhhhh, it’s so nice out.” I was happy to be his excuse to enjoy the peak of pleasantness of the day.

He picked up face mask trash in the parking lot and I zoomed off to the store where I bought yellow

Tulips and Easter chocolate.

I am wearing a crop top, kids keep waving at me like they know me but I think they’re just as happy as I am for spring.

I took my tulips for a stroll in the park, and a neighbour who saw me detour into the street to avoid the spillover of a construction site said he called the city, too!

An older man rolls by on his longboard and offers to give me a ride because he’s faster than me. I like wheels and he’s so eager to preach wheels that I keep pace (on my own) and let him perform his expertise.

I wish I could say I was annoyed. I might have spring fever —I *definitely* have spring fever, let’s blame spring fever! because I was so amused. None of us have any social skills and he’s “really good at engineering” and we’re all just happy to be here. Let’s rejoice.

I was so happy when the video I set up to capture me eating Eggies the same colour as my flowers while I rolled and matched the sky also captured his whole monologue. I couldn't get instagram to upload it or put captions on it, and in case you don’t want to listen because it’s windy and you can’t even see my face or my butt anyway, it starts:

“Trust me! Im an electrical and mechanical engineer and I’m really good at engineering!”

Then in the middle he goes on to talk about the legacy of his wheelchair inventions that he hasn’t invented. And it ends with:

“What’s the biggest impediment to any wheelchair person?” We turn the corner and a downslope carries him ahead of me. He has to shout back to me as he answers his own question, “Anything with an angle! Once you conquer the angle…” as I slow down, his voice gets more distant, “the rest is easy.”

I couldn’t keep that gem to myself. Conquer the angles, my wheelchair friends!

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