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  1. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmw View Post
    Hahaha, right?!? I can only mention the smaller fancyish bag because it's exactly the kind of thing I've found myself lacking on previous trips myself.

    For the SK vs SE, it depends on what you generally carry in your bag. I have both, but I personally prefer the SK because it's still plenty small yet I can fit a full-size hair brush (the curse of bangs), regular pens standing up (not lying down), and I feel like I just have more room to access the stuff inside. I do use the SE sometimes, and I'm glad I have it, but with the stuff I carry, I always feel like I'm having to take things out to get to other things. Whereas with the SK, that little bit of extra room means I can just swoop in and grab something what I need more easily. (I'm also physically on the larger side, so the SK looks less weensy next to me. Smilie)

    If your date-night stuff is more minimal or smaller, though, the SE could totally work. Lots of people here love it!
    Thank you! I am a relatively small person. I'm 5 foot, and a bit curvy. I'll probably get the SK since I may need to carry some larger items, like my Epi pens :/

  2. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by kirbysgirl View Post
    Thank you! I am a relatively small person. I'm 5 foot, and a bit curvy. I'll probably get the SK since I may need to carry some larger items, like my Epi pens :/
    Side Kick definitely seems the better choice for quick access to an Epi pen since it has those taller upright pouches along the sides. (Pretty sure the pen slots are too narrow.)

    How tall is an Epi pen, kirbysgirl? I'm pretty sure heightwise they should fit standing up in a SK, but I can't remember the exact dimensions, and my Google kung-fu seems to be failing. I'd be happy to test something of similar height to be sure, though, if you can give me some guidance.

  3. #18
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    kirbysgirl, I traveled to Finland in a wheelchair last year. (I'd injured my legs earlier in the year. I traveled to England with two canes, ended up renting a wheelchair while in England, then traveled to Finland with the rented wheelchair after checking with the rental agency that that would be OK.)

    At that point in the trip I was using an Aeronaut 45 and small Yeoman Duffel, with a Co-Pilot crammed into one of the other two bags. In Finland my partner balanced one of my bags on his wheeled suitcase and I kept the other on my lap, but both bags were wide enough that I had real trouble moving my arms enough to propel the chair without making the bag slide forward and off my lap. I'm not very skilled at using a wheelchair, though; I don't know whether that would be as much of a problem for someone who is skilled at it.

    (Now I'm wondering whether we could have hung the Aeronaut on the back of the chair. That might have been a lot easier! I don't remember whether we considered it.)

    A final note about traveling to Finland with a wheelchair: the convention center I went to in Helsinki was the worst for wheelchair accessibility! It was full of things that looked accessible and weren't really. (For example, the door that would open automatically for a wheelchair user but had a high enough threshold that I had to grab the doorframe and pull myself through, because the chair couldn't get a purchase on it to wheel myself forward.) I don't know whether that's typical of Finland or if it was just that one convention center; dealing with getting around the convention center used up so much of my energy I didn't explore the rest of Helsinki at all. I hope your experience of Finland is much better than mine was, and I wish you a great visit with your friend-and-possible-romantic-interest!
    I have a bunch of great bags. Favorite color combos include Aubergine/Island, Navy/Solar, Forest/UV, Original Halcyon/Wasabi, Cloud/Viridian... and now also Seapine/UV!

    I've fulfilled my dream of palindromic-colored nested bags! Navy/Ultraviolet Pilot with Aubergine/Island Side Effect inside: blue purple purple blue. Forest/UV A45 with Aubergine/Wasabi Co-Pilot inside: green purple purple green.

  4. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by aedifica View Post
    kirbysgirl, I traveled to Finland in a wheelchair last year. (I'd injured my legs earlier in the year. I traveled to England with two canes, ended up renting a wheelchair while in England, then traveled to Finland with the rented wheelchair after checking with the rental agency that that would be OK.)

    At that point in the trip I was using an Aeronaut 45 and small Yeoman Duffel, with a Co-Pilot crammed into one of the other two bags. In Finland my partner balanced one of my bags on his wheeled suitcase and I kept the other on my lap, but both bags were wide enough that I had real trouble moving my arms enough to propel the chair without making the bag slide forward and off my lap. I'm not very skilled at using a wheelchair, though; I don't know whether that would be as much of a problem for someone who is skilled at it.

    (Now I'm wondering whether we could have hung the Aeronaut on the back of the chair. That might have been a lot easier! I don't remember whether we considered it.)

    A final note about traveling to Finland with a wheelchair: the convention center I went to in Helsinki was the worst for wheelchair accessibility! It was full of things that looked accessible and weren't really. (For example, the door that would open automatically for a wheelchair user but had a high enough threshold that I had to grab the doorframe and pull myself through, because the chair couldn't get a purchase on it to wheel myself forward.) I don't know whether that's typical of Finland or if it was just that one convention center; dealing with getting around the convention center used up so much of my energy I didn't explore the rest of Helsinki at all. I hope your experience of Finland is much better than mine was, and I wish you a great visit with your friend-and-possible-romantic-interest!
    @aedifica,

    Thank you so much for the advice. I'm quite skilled at using a wheelchair. Well I like to think I am. Did you have any issues with using bathrooms? I find that if I have a shoulder strap on my duffels and wear it like I would a cross-body bag and then put it on my lap the bag doesn't slide around hardly at all, especially if I have a backpack on my back and one of the straps is on top of the shoulder strap. Does that make sense?

    I know that won't help now, but you might find it helpful in the future! I find that rental wheelchairs are significantly more difficult to use than custom ones. mainly because the custom ones are made specifically for the person, and I use my chair every day so I get used to a new chair quite quickly.

    I am hoping that I will have my new chair at least a few weeks prior to my trip so I can figure out all of the quirks of the new chair and get it adjusted just right. I will be staying with a local family in Finland, so I'm sure that they will be able to point things out and help if needed. My friend is also really good about helping if I need it. I always try to figure things out on my own before I ask for help.

    Are the Finnish people helpful? I have a friend that is from there that also uses a chair and she said I wouldn't have many issues, except for public transport.

    Do you have any tips about how much money to bring, or what credit cards to bring (visa vs. mastercard)?

    Kirbysgirl

  5. #20
    Volunteer Moderator aedifica's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kirbysgirl View Post
    @aedifica,

    Thank you so much for the advice. I'm quite skilled at using a wheelchair. Well I like to think I am. Did you have any issues with using bathrooms?
    All the bathrooms I encountered (airport and convention center) were great! Bathrooms in general may have been the accessibility high point of the trip for me. Your mileage may vary significantly, though.

    I find that if I have a shoulder strap on my duffels and wear it like I would a cross-body bag and then put it on my lap the bag doesn't slide around hardly at all, especially if I have a backpack on my back and one of the straps is on top of the shoulder strap. Does that make sense?

    I know that won't help now, but you might find it helpful in the future! I find that rental wheelchairs are significantly more difficult to use than custom ones. mainly because the custom ones are made specifically for the person, and I use my chair every day so I get used to a new chair quite quickly.
    That does make sense about using the shoulder strap, and I had removed the strap for travel (I checked one of the bags) so it never occurred to me to try it that way. I'll keep that in mind, thank you! I've heard custom chairs are a lot easier to use, and I'm glad. :-)

    Are the Finnish people helpful? I have a friend that is from there that also uses a chair and she said I wouldn't have many issues, except for public transport.

    Do you have any tips about how much money to bring, or what credit cards to bring (visa vs. mastercard)?
    I didn't meet very many Finnish people because the convention I was there for was international (Worldcon, a science fiction convention that's held in a different place every year). The ones I did meet were pleasant to talk with, though. The guy I chatted with the most had an impressive vocabulary in English. I had learned a couple of very basic Finnish words and phrases before I went, but that was all; and everyone I encountered did speak English. Well, except for one of the servers at the hotel restaurant, who went and got one of their English-speaking colleagues to take our orders. :-)

    Unfortunately I don't have any tips about how much money to take or which credit cards, because the trip was more "I'm going to Worldcon" than "I'm going to Finland." And so much will depend on whether you're eating with the family or going out to eat, etc.
    I have a bunch of great bags. Favorite color combos include Aubergine/Island, Navy/Solar, Forest/UV, Original Halcyon/Wasabi, Cloud/Viridian... and now also Seapine/UV!

    I've fulfilled my dream of palindromic-colored nested bags! Navy/Ultraviolet Pilot with Aubergine/Island Side Effect inside: blue purple purple blue. Forest/UV A45 with Aubergine/Wasabi Co-Pilot inside: green purple purple green.

  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by aedifica View Post
    All the bathrooms I encountered (airport and convention center) were great! Bathrooms in general may have been the accessibility high point of the trip for me. Your mileage may vary significantly, though.



    That does make sense about using the shoulder strap, and I had removed the strap for travel (I checked one of the bags) so it never occurred to me to try it that way. I'll keep that in mind, thank you! I've heard custom chairs are a lot easier to use, and I'm glad. :-)



    I didn't meet very many Finnish people because the convention I was there for was international (Worldcon, a science fiction convention that's held in a different place every year). The ones I did meet were pleasant to talk with, though. The guy I chatted with the most had an impressive vocabulary in English. I had learned a couple of very basic Finnish words and phrases before I went, but that was all; and everyone I encountered did speak English. Well, except for one of the servers at the hotel restaurant, who went and got one of their English-speaking colleagues to take our orders. :-)

    Unfortunately I don't have any tips about how much money to take or which credit cards, because the trip was more "I'm going to Worldcon" than "I'm going to Finland." And so much will depend on whether you're eating with the family or going out to eat, etc.
    Custom chairs are easier because they are, well, custom and depending on your insurance you can get some awesome colors and accessories to make it work even better for you. The thing I appreciate about the custom chair process is that if you're lucky you work with a great wheelchair seating specialist that will explain your options and educate you about what would be better and the pros and cons of every choice. I've been really lucky with getting good people when it comes to chairs specialists. Not all people are so lucky.

    If you check your duffel bag next time you can take off the shoulder strap and put it in your carry-on for when you get off the plane and pick it up in baggage claim. I've found that works well.

    Thank you for the information on the bathrooms.

    Most people in Finland speak or at least write in English, they learn it in school.

    I have heard of Worldcon. I'm glad you enjoyed your trip, and had a wonderful time.

    kirbysgirl

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