Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Let's Hear It for the ADA!

That's right folks, this post is a tribute to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) - keep reading, I promise it won't be too technical. We have just returned from our glorious 2 week jaunt to France and so as not to interfere with the glowing reports we have shared I am dispensing with the one less than bright spot of our entire fortnight in quite possibly the most wonderful place on the planet with its own post. For those looking for a little background, the ADA was signed into law by President Bush numero uno in 1990. The law includes 5 sections covering 1) Employment; 2) Public Services (and public transportation); 3) Public Accommodations (and Commercial Facilities); 4) Telecommunications; and 5) Miscellaneous Provisions. Generally speaking this law was passed in an effort to protect the civil rights of the disabled and to prevent discrimination as a result of said disability. Now back to the reason for this post...Paris is wonderful for so many reasons, not the least of which is that it is an extremely accessible city for residents and tourists alike. Nearly every point in the city is reachable by bus, train, metro or on foot. The first three modes of transportation can get you to almost any point in the city with very little effort on your part. Their timetables and destinations are varied, the trains and buses are clean and, here is the kicker, if you can get yourself on them, they can get you where you want to go. I say "if", because in 2 weeks of taking the train or metro almost everyday we encountered, wait for it, no more than 5 elevators or escalators. When we bought our stroller, we spared no expense, we plunked down the cash for super deluxe, super compatible, super light. And, our child is well below the curve on weight, at 20 months he still does not weigh 25 pounds. But, 5 and a half months pregnant or not, VERY quickly I was tired of either lugging him in the stroller of out of the stroller up the thousands (not an exaggeration) of stairs to get ourselves from one spectacular locale to another (for those who know, the stairs leading up to Sacre Coeur nearly killed me). And while walking was a far more aesthetically pleasing alternative, at some point the body begins to rebel (particularly since on the maps everything looks so much closer and flatter than it really is - in reality, Place de la Concorde is not just a hop skip and a jump from the Arc de Triomphe). In truth, all the walking we did was probably a good antidote for all the high calorie, high fat, high flavor, devil may care eating we did as well, but still, by the time we hauled ourselves, our child, his stroller and our carry-on baggage up/down the last set of staircases at Charles de Gaulle airport (seriously, no escalators in an airport!!??) I was DONE. On the other hand, all this lugging was rare good news for Lima. Never before having equated being pregnant with being disabled I am nonetheless grateful that in most parts of Lima that's exactly what being pregnant means and as such elevators, escalators and ramps abound, as do lines and parking spaces specifically for someone in my "condition", or GASP! with a child in tow, something completely disregarded by the French. Hooray for Lima, hooray for the ADA and once again, God bless America!


Anonymous said...

You have no comments.. - thats sad.

However I'm a rent-a-commenter. Write good posts and I comment. Easy.

Nate and Sina said...

I can't believe the ADA was signed into law in the 90's! I am forever grateful to the *progressives* who pushed that law into being.

BTW, holy active posting batman!! You have become a blogger, and more pictures of Caleb than we have seen in a year to boot!

Celia Fae said...

The funny thing is, I sent a copy of the Ross blog to my dad to forward to his friend, John Call. John is in his ward. I've been bugging him for years for a discount cards. I told him to tell John that if he doesn't give me one, I am going to write an anti-Ross and he will be sorry.

Nothing like a little extortion, huh?

Do you think Ilene is grateful fo rthe ADA?

Linsey said...

And, Paris Soul Mate, did you notice how I am now commenting on my comments too? I think this is the first time, maybe since I tried Pot, that I have actually caved to peer pressure, I hope you're proud. And, oh yeah, never actually tried Pot, I know you're shocked!

Celia Fae said...

A MAID? Please. You need to blog about that. I want pictures of the fresh juice.

Ilene said...

This Ilene is grateful for the ADA, Celia :)

Nothing like using those buttons to open the doors into buildings when using a stroller.

I remember at BYU those buttons were in constant use by all of us girls who never had a boy to open a door for us or by all the guys who didn't want to bother to open a door for the girl behind him.

Nate and Sina said...

Celia- does John Call live in Bountiful, UT and is he married to Carolyn?

And Linsey- love, love, love the are such the little blogger now!

Adrianne said...

amen to that.


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