I am not sure about other Deaf-Blind people, but for me Snow is a bad word!
Hey, Deaf-Blind peeps! What is your opinion of snow?
I recently read an article posted on CBC.ca about snow and persons with mobility disabilities. In the article, a law student with mobility challenges, she uses a wheelchair due to Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, discusses her inability to get around campus when it is properly cleared of snow! There is also a short video of her being pushed through the snow. As usual, I’ll add the link at the bottom of this blog. Want you to read my well-crafted blog before you zoom out! Winks!
With mobility devices, I do know that getting around in the snow can be a huge problem. Be it manual wheelchairs, or power chairs, scooters or walkers, or even simple canes, there are many situations that are problematic. Pushing through even an inch or three of snow can increase your bicep strength, but lower you energy level!
For individuals who are Deaf-Blind, blind or low vision, there are other issues that impact walking in snow.
- Snow can be incredibly bright, even when cloudy sky. Sunglasses are mandatory.
- Snow, being uniformly white, is impossible to see how high it is, or how deep it is. If it is fresh snow, then it is usually smooth or earth-conforming and soft and powdery. Easy to walk through right? But, if it is a day old, it becomes hard to see the piles that have been made by shovels, kids, cars and snowblowers.
- Snow leads to ice, and ice cannot be seen. And for me that is worse. Why? A normal person can, usually, react lightening quick to right themselves when falling. However, with my ataxia, my coordination is zip, so I usually topple over!
- Snow at the curb: oh yes, the sidewalks are usually free of snow, (say thank you!) yet, it is common for the plowed snow to be pushed onto the curb, or the ramp, and left there. These piles are blocking access to the sidewalk, and because of the aforementioned inability to see the depth or height of snow, one can overstep, misstep or slip and fall these piles of snow! You need to be very agile to get over some of these piles!
Those are the most common problems with snow for ME!
I have lived in both Sudbury & Toronto where snow happens as early as November and can stick around until March. I’ve walked through blizzards just to get a bus. I can tell you I have stood in 2 feet of snow waiting for a cab. And, yes, I have pushed a stroller with a baby and essentials to Zellers with a spotless sidewalk, yet three feet of snowbanks on both sides!
And, I must admit, when it snowed, I spent more time falling over, getting back up, losing my balance, my glasses, my patience, my toque, than actually walking!
I am not a fan of snow!
I like to see cherry blossoms in February! Say thank you!
Here is the CBC.ca article!
Thank you for reading!