It seems like I have a host of stories from our cruise this past that I haven’t had the energy to blog about, but this one I have been purposefully holding back and you’ll quickly see why.

I’m getting a new chair!

I wrote a post a few months back about GI Joe! No wait…it was about knowing being half the battle…no wait…about how different a chair I’d have if I’d known more 3 years ago. That was it! Well go figure that just a short while later, events would conspire to let me prove that knowledge can be a great thing. To keep a long story short (TOO LATE!), on the return flight from the trip, my chair was damaged in cargo. Shannon met my chair as it was pulled from cargo and put on the ramp and she immediately started waving at me that something was wrong. Once I made it to the chair, it was obvious there were major issues. The backrest was bent out of alignment and the arch of the frame going from knees to front wheels had been bent inwards. It took a while to figure out, but basically the front wheels were several inches closer to the back wheels then they were supposed to be.

I could still use the old chair, but had to be very careful on hills or any kind of rough terrain. The mistake of the sizing that had my weight too high and far forward was now compounded by the damage.

Now as Shannon has often said, this isn’t specifically the fault of the airline we flew with, WestJet. They aren’t the ones who load the luggage, that’s whatever company is hired at any given airport, including Toronto Pearson.  We don’t know what caused the problem…all we can guess is that someone put something heavy against the chair and weight shifted midflight…all that mattered was the chair was damaged. We give full credit to WestJet on this, as they very quickly got us the information we needed to make a claim, and I heard from a rep at their head office within a day. The irony was that I was scheduled to go for a visit to a seating clinic at Lyndhurst Rehab Centre just two days after we got home. Before I even went to that appointment, Westjet was arranging for an assessment of the damage and starting the process for replacing it. They were open and honest and I give full credit to the rep, Lori, for all her help and support in pushing this through. It was complicated, a lot of paperwork had to be just right due to the value of the chair, but she helped guide it through and all is good.

With that, it meant we could start looking at a much better chair than my first, so the timing for the appointment with the seating clinic at Lyndhurst was perfect. Ironically, they took one look at the old chair and didn’t want to let me roll back out in it, given how bad the shape of it was. However, in short order I was being measured up in the ways I never got the first time around. Thorough and precise doesn’t even begin to cover how much better this time around was. We’re going with a different vendor, chair brand, everything except the seat cushion, where I am sticking with my Ride Forward cushion.

If you are curious, here’s the site of the chair vendor: and the exact chair model.

We are doing full Titanium this time, lighter weight and sturdier for travel. In fact, the picture is very close to how the chair is going to look, colour-wise, though with a different backrest and cushion. One of the techs for Motion Specialties (the company we are using to get the chair through) recommended that given how I use the chair, I should avoid a custom colour. Many of you might recall the post I did ages ago about the first chair and how proud I was to get it in my British Racing Green. Somehow I thought customizing the chair would make it more “mine”. In some ways this was true, but it also had the drawback that within six months I have scratched the paint job pretty badly. Going with the polished titanium means I can polish out scratches with a brillo pad if need be. I really had a debate on that one in my head, as the tilite website has some very cool tools for customizing colours, right down to even tattooing portions of the frame.

For once though, the 40 year old adult in me (see practical side) overcame the teenage geek that normally wins.

We made a few other changes that I’ll get into once we get the chair and I can illustrate them…but in the meantime, Motion Specialties has loaned me an older version of the chair that is leaps and bounds superior to my old Quickie Q7. It’s  amazing how a chair that is better measured works. We can’t wait for it to arrive and its due around the beginning of December. Yes, the irony that I am getting it just as winter is hitting isn’t lost to me BUT…there is a trip to Miami coming up, so it is going to get its travel wheels under it quite quickly.

There is my bragging for my first post in a while. Much more to come and I have been requested to post some videos of the chair in action…we’ll see what we can do.