A year ago we went to a party at a restaurant in Dallas. I went through the door in my Amigo scooter just fine, but then it was over. Steps down were the only way to get to the tables, and they were so close together my Amigo and I would not fit between them.
The staff was gracious as they directed me outside to the patio entrance. The patio was closed because it was a cold December evening, but the patio allowed me to get to the double doors leading to the dining room. Uh-oh, step up.
Luckily our party's table was the closest to the doors. Garry picked me up and carried me to the chair. The diners were all aware of my grand entrance, the food was delicious, and the staff remained attentive through the meal until I was lifted and escorted to the patio door.
Was that accessible? They certainly accommodated me. I was reminded of this outing when I read Donald Hayes' story in 360, the online disability magazine.
Hayes wanted to have his morning coffee with doughnuts from Dunkin' Donuts with a drive-up window. He could have gone to a near-by Dunkin' Donuts walk in if he didn't mind crossing busy snow-slick intersections in his power wheelchair.
Town by-laws restrict drive-up windows to motor vehicles, and Dunkin' Donuts said his wheelchair made him a pedestrian. Martin Ebel, general counsel for the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination offered a solution: Hayes could phone in his order and an employee would bring it out.
The restaurant is not accessible, but Donald Hayes would be accommodated.
The Dunkin' Donuts blog accepts comments, but I saw no mention of this story. The Obscure Store & Reading Room blog mentions the story and has many comments, pro and con.