It’s a beautiful brisbane morning. The sun is out, the birds are making their presence known through bird song and not a cloud can be seen in the beautiful blue sky. While sitting down to enjoy my morning coffee I received a call from a friend who was accepting an invite to lunch i had offered last night. After a few minutes chatting about where we would meet and what time i disconnected the call to get ready. I’m a minimalist in appearance. No makeup and very little hair styling is required to get ready for the day. While putting together my handbag I had been asked to provide a member of my family some assistance which i did. Somehow, in all my attempts to be prepared I forgot one very important tool. My white cane. It wasn’t until i got into the city where i would meet my friend that I realised this had happened so there was no chance of going back to get it. As i stood waiting for my friend I realised that this could make a good post. Here’s where i’ll explain how someone like me with very little useable vision managed to navigate the busy Brisbane Queen Street Mall without a cane.
What is this cane you speak of?
When many people think of a cane, the image that comes to mind is probably not the right one. My cane is unlike something used by the elderly. A cane is a tool that is also used by the blind. It is generally white in colour, although some people do opt to customize their cane in various colours. The body of the cane is a thin alluminium tube which covers a piece of elastic which comes out the top of the rubber handle. The handle is another aluminium piece which is covered by black ruber with the cane’s manufacturer written on it. At the tip of the cane is a rolling ball which can come in a few different shapes, sizes and colours. There are many types of canes out there, although the above description is mine.
How could you leave this important mobility aid at home?
How could you leave your phone or anything else at home? It happens to all of us, although this is the first time it has happened to me with this particular tool. It should be said that my moment of forgetfulness has taught me some things which i will come back to at a later point in this post.
How did the day go?
The day was an interesting one. My friend who is also blind and i worked together in a team to navigate the mall. She would provide me feedback which she would gather on her cane and I would take that feedback and pair it with what little vision i do have to get us from destination to destination. It was a rather successful adventure.
What was learned from today?
Today, i learned the importance of keeping a spare cane in my handbag. I generally only use the one bag which means that i often don’t think about my other handbags and the cane i may or may not need. I am definitely calling myself an idiot on my forgetfulness. One thing i can happily say is that not having a cane forced me to be more observant. It made me take note of my surroundings more. I am glad that i got to have this experience but do not think it is one that i will repeat as i am now left feeling slightly pained with a headache.
If you have any questions about the content of this post or blindness and mobility aids in general, i am happy to answer them. As always, thank you for reading my post. If you would like to support me, you can do so by Buying me a coffee.