Adventures in a Wheel Chair

Mt. Pilatus, Lucerne :accessible by tiny red train.
Monte St. Michel: settle for cafe at the bottom.

Mt. Pilatus at 7,000 feet is accessible by a small train, a cable car, and chair lift.  We used them all.  The train was the scariest!

The much smaller Mt. St. Michel defeated us when my husband and son, emboldened by a couple of beers, tried together to run pushing me up the cobblestone road.  The rubber rim of my right wheel went flying off about a fourth of the way up.

I settled for coffee in a sidewalk cafe at the bottom.  My son and husband were gone so long, the waiters were huffily removing my cup and setting my table for the next meal.  I resorted to writing a note in French saying my son and husband would be back soon to join me for dinner.

Under threat of abandonment by my French speaking son, I am not allowed to attempt to speak French in France.  The French are very proud of the beauty of their language.  He thinks deportation is a serious possibility, if I do my usual “language deaf” mangling of even a foreign language that I have actually studied.

I must admit, I think that’s a real possibility in Paris.  They are nasty to everyone, even non-Parisian Frenchmen, who often asked my son for help with the Metro and directions.   And I helped young Japanese women finally get service in a cafe in Paris by besieging the waiters with written notes.  I think the waiters feared I would fill the room with notes like confetti.

If you do not know French, at least carry a written note asking, “Where are the bathrooms?”  But, beware, in Paris many of them are ecumenical.


About Eileen

Mother of five, grandmother of eleven, great-grandmother of five. 1955 -1959 Rice University in Houston, TX. Taught primary grades; Was Associate Post Director of Religious Education at Ft. Campbell, KY; Consultant on the Myers/Briggs Type Indicator; Presently part time Administrative Assistant/Bookkeeper for Architect husband of fifty-nine years.

Posted on February 21, 2013, in Humor, Travel and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Ha! Breaking my own rules, I have no thoughtful, value-adding comment to leave… but I love this. Terrific post!

  2. Reblogged this on Laughter: Carbonated Grace and commented:

    About twenty years ago on one of thirteen trips to Europe, about nine of which were made with the challenge of being in a wheel chair.

  3. Eileen, Thank you for sharing your adventures. Your zest lights up the page. xo

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