Well, sadly, that’s the end of Charlie, my wheelchair. He has finally given up the ghost and gone to that great big wheelchair heaven in the sky. I’ve been without Charlie for nearly a month now and have been cooped up indoors, slowly climbing the walls and developing a serious bout of cabin fever. Oh, it’s so sad and so hard to let him go after four long and faithful years.
Farewell, Charlie x
Introducing ‘Prince George’
I have now had to acquire a new wheelchair, although due to a serious lack of funds, he is somewhat, or should I say, considerably, inferior to Charlie. So, let me introduce ‘Prince George’, ordinarily known as George (and will possibly become Georgie if he behaves himself and endears himself to me a little more).
Today was my first full day of driving him and, oh boy, am I feeling it now?! Ouch! Prince George has so far shown himself to be very inconsiderate despite the deceiving ‘go faster stripes’ on either side of his back and his smart blue paintwork. I have noted the following points of comparison in the case against Prince George:
- His back is tough vinyl whereas Charlie was comfortably upholstered.
- George has four wheels, much more difficult to drive than Charlie’s well-balanced six wheels.
- Parking is a nightmare … Charlie could do a nifty three-point turn. George just about manages it in fifteen points, (give or take a few).
- Charlie had a neat, flip-up footplate whereas George has two very stiff footrests (I think he’s developed arthritis at an early age) .
- George feels every bump in the pavement and he feels like he’s climbing the humps on a Bactrian camel’s back.
- The armrests are plastic, as hard as cement which is tough on the elbows, as opposed to Charlie’s softly-cushioned arms.
- I came home today totally exhausted and with my back feeling like I’d run a marathon in stiletto heels.
However, I do have to say in defence of George:
- He has fitted LED headlights and rear lights for coming home on those chilly and dark winter nights when a starless sky is as black as coal.
- He even has left and right indicators although because the controls are completely different, I indicated to turn left when I was trying to turn the speed down and I ended up having a close encounter with a brick wall which had very conveniently placed itself in my way.
- George even has hazard warning lights – very useful in my case as the sheer effort of trying to keep him straight on a narrow footpath/cycleway renders him a hazard to anyone within a ten-metre radius.
- George’s ‘beep’ is a tad louder than Charlie’s which means, “excuse me, please remove yourself from the vicinity if I am coming towards you”. Alternately, if I’m really exhausted and ratty, this may come across as, “get out of the way you silly idiot” (or for silly idiot, read “%$#@/&*£*”)!
So there you have it; the case of Prince George versus Charlie, with Charlie winning outright. However, unfortunately, I’m stuck with arthritic George so I’ll just have to persevere and leave the stilettos at home in future.