The other day I pulled into a parking space, one of two permit spaces, each with its own access aisle. Another car pulled in next to me at almost the same second. I opened my car door, leaned my seat back. The driver of the other car, a 20-something man, did the same. I pulled the wheelchair frame over me and put it on the street. So did he. I pulled out a wheel, put it on, pulled out the other wheel, put it on. So did he. I said something stupid and mindless like, “That’s the first time I’ve ever done synchronized wheelchair unloading.” He looked at me like a scalded cat and left as quickly as possible.
Saturday night I went to an ASTER concert. Another synchronized parking and wheelchair unloading performance (not really, the other person drives a van, hobbles out of her seat and pulls her folding chair out of the back). I know her slightly. There’s a line waiting outside the auditorium. We get in line together. We chat about our kids (both have just graduated from high school). At some point she says, “This is so nice, standing in line talking to you and not getting a crick in my neck.”