The Adventures of Gimpy Girl

A journal of the trials and triumphs of another trip to unexplored territory.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Taking the wheels on the road

Preparing for another trip into the unknown.

It was last October when I set off for Mexico, not knowing what to expect. I am traveling alone and using a scooter. That was a liberating experience. I was scared as hell, like jumping into a black pool off a very high rock. I just had to jump for the experience of hitting the water, and swimming in the pool. That's what living is all about. Letting go of the reins and experiencing what life has to offer, despite all my 'limitations'.

So here I go again, jumping into a new pool called Japan. This time I want to share the experience as I go--so here I am with my first blog! Friends and family can see what I'm up to, but I am hoping this will also be useful for people who want to know more about traveling in Japan and doing it from a wheelchair or scooter. I know I have only dug up a little information on traveling from this position.

Less than two weeks to go! Yesterday I talked to the Japanese Consulate in San Francisco and they directed me to an excellent website: I finally have a glimpse of information about the accessibility of the trains. Thank goodness! I was pretty worried I'd buy a rail pass just to find out I couldn't get on the trains. I sent an email to them and now I've had several correspondences with a girl there who has been able to reassure me that I will be okay on the trains. Most trains are accessible and all the stops are documented on the site so I will be able to check ahead of time and not get off at a stop that I can't get out of. I'm feeling much better having a personal contact.

Time for some R & R. I'll keep you posted!