Thursday, 5 June 2008

YOU TOUCH-A MA CAR..........

This is it folks - my new car! It's a Ford Focus Estate Automatic and has an electric hoist fitted in the back so I can get my buggy into the car. Keith just picks it up and in it goes but me....well! Can't say I'm wild about the colour. I chose it of course but it looked more green on the swatch I saw. I really do look like the Mad Woman from the Attic don't I???

Let's see if I can find a picture of me, full frontal. It'll come out at the top I should think, I can't figure out Photobucket at all - but that's another story! Yup, there's Bridget the Midget about to get in for an inaugural drive!

Keith had to drive it away from the garage on Tuesday because they are in the middle of a major expansion. Unfortunately, in order to expand they have to shrink first of all. They have less space because it is being built on but they have the same amount of cars for sale. You can hardly move around there. I usually drive away from the garage, not Keith! It doesn't feel like my new car if I don't have first go in it.

Tuesday was also a full day of torrential rain. It has rained an awful lot this past week in our bit of Lincolnshire and Tuesday was the worst of all. Well it would be, wouldn't it, as this new car business did not go smoothly. We arrived at mid-day, as instructed, but then had to wait there for 3½ hours because the bloke installing the hoist was 'having a bit of bother'. I ordered that car 4 months ago, the garage has had it for a month and they have to have the hoist installed the day I collect it! We were starving but couldn't go anywhere for lunch because we had already handed back our old car and it was raining too hard to walk (or go by chair, in my case). I was busting for the loo but the garage's was upstairs so I just had to think happy thoughts. I had to wait until Wednesday (yesterday) to drive the thing. It took the shine off it somewhat (not literally).

So anyway, there I was, looking forward to today so I could have a drive at leisure but - where is my car? At the chicken factory where Keith works. Just sitting there in the car park. Doing nothing. Oh bum!

I get the car through Motability. It's a wonderful organisation, that. In return for getting my Diability Living Allowance (Mobility element) every month they provide me with a new car every three years, they cover the road tax, insurance, RAC, servicing, the lot. All I have to do is put petrol in and love it! I don't know whether there is anything similar in any other country. As far as I know it's unique to Great Britain and yet it relies on charitable donations for its existence. They have an excellent website at and on its 'support us' page it states:

"We at Motability believe that everyone has the right to personal freedom and independence. We do everything we can to help disabled people realise their full potential by providing them with personal mobility. By supporting Motability, you can make a real difference to a disabled person’s life."

They can provide other means of getting around if a car is not for you. Electric scooters, power chairs, wheelchairs, wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAVs). They also pick up part of the bill for adaptations you might need to your ordinary car. I have a hoist in the boot (trunk) to lift my buggy in and out. I could have had an electric box on the car roof which can pick up and store my folded chair. Or left foot controlled pedals in an automatic car. Steering wheel turning devices if you only have one hand available. Many, even more sophisticated things to make life easier. You would be surprised how many bits of you can be missing and you still being able to drive! Good eyesight is de rigeur if you want to drive yourself but even blindness is no bar to having a car and nominating a friend or family member to drive you.

With Motability providing the means and us in 'gammy legs corner' providing the motive, suddenly being disabled isn't so bad! If somebody tries to sell you a raffle ticket, please buy one.


Raquel said...

Angie!!! How lovely to put a face to you! You are beautiful, girlfriend! I am so happy for you, a new car! We have nothing of the sort here in America, at least not that I have heard of. Hope that you have a great week! Don't drive too far!

Marie said...

OH Angie, I too must echo Raquel's feelings. It is soooo GOOD to be able to finally put a face to you! (((hugs))) You are beautiful my friend! Am love, Love, LOVING the new car! Lucky you!! There is no program like that in North America so yet again this is a blessing enjoyed by UK'ers that must never be taken for granted. This is the best country on earth, despite it's problems! They say there is naught so strong as a convert and I say there's naught so appreciative of a new country as an immigrant! I love this place, warts and all. It's the best place on earth to live!