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My Trip to New York City Was Full of Accessibility 'Hits' and 'Misses'

On August 30, 2015, my husband and I continued our “decade birthday” tradition for our siblings and spouses. This was my brother’s 60th birthday, so he chose the destination. Our flights from Australia and Florida landed all six of us in New York City for five days and a weekend with my brother’s daughter — who flew in from London.

Upon our arrival at LaGuardia airport, my husband and I — who both live with disabilities —appreciated the help of the airport taxi dispatcher and a driver willing to load two scooters into his vehicle. We assured the driver that our family would help him unload at our lodging. This was a better solution than scrambling to find an accessible taxi.

My brother’s wife had asked every conceivable question to ensure that our second-floor Airbnb loft had an elevator and no stairs. We planned to come and go independently like the rest of our crew. However, the booking agent overlooked the three-inch rise from the sidewalk into the building, and the elevator was a far cry from accessible. Still, we were thankful that one scooter at a time could squeak through the narrow door into the small elevator car.

We primarily navigated our way around Manhattan riding accessible city buses and the subway to stops that have elevators. This eliminated any parking problems — unless you count the perturbed parking attendant who did not appreciate my humor when I backed my scooter into a ground level space underneath a car on a second-tier hoist.

My brother’s birthday dinner was fine dining with great décor, toasts, and God’s blessing. His birthday gift from my sister — tickets to the opening night matches of the US Open at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Queens — proved to be the highlight of the

Family Citi Parke
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