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Travel

The ObusForme Seat And Back

In 1992, Cait got an ObusForme Seat to ease back pain she was suffering from a poorly designed office chair. The ObusForme proved so beneficial she took it with her on planes, trains and in cars for the next 15 years, finally passing it on in 2007 to Marty, who now uses it when she works at the computer.

obusforme-lowback.pngGranted, our ObusForme has not been in use every day of the last 15 years, but it’s seen heavy-duty use, proved nearly indestructible and remains so comfortable that Marty often has to shoo a dog from her chair because they like to nap on the ObusForme.

The ObusForme Seat works independently or together with either the High Back or Low Back support for a seating system. They support your pelvis in a comfortably balanced position and evenly distribute body weight, easing pressure point problems. Lightweight, the seat and back fold easily when you need to pack it up and hit the road.obusforme-seat.png

The back rest includes a removable lumbar pad and the hypoallergenic, brushed nylon cover can be removed from the back and seat and sponge washed.

To our eyes, the design has changed little during the last 15 years, proving quality lasts. When it’s time to get a new one, we’ll go with the same model and donate this one to our dogs, who snore so happily when they get the chance to nap on it.

Bladder Matters: Public Toilets

When you have to go, you HAVE TO GO! But too often we’re out of luck in our cities when it comes to finding a clean, neat, safe, graffiti-free, working public restroom - with toilet paper.

Gimpy Girls’ Guru Jane Brody, of The New York Times, says Sydney, Australia, tops all when it comes to accessible public toilets. But if you can’t hold it till Sydney, click here to read Jane’s suggestions for finding decent restrooms closer to home.

As usual, Jane is informative and on-the-money about this being a public health issue too long overlooked in most cities.

Jane also found this great site called The Bathroom Diaries, which describes and rates restrooms in cities throughout the world, including China, Turkey or South Africa.

She suggests planning ahead for your next trip and printing out the Bathroom Diaries list of public facilities in the cities you plan to visit in the United States, Canada or some far more exotic location.

Doing Nothing On A Winter Escape

This delightful New York Times story is about doing nothing in winter at a lazy pace.

Read the story

Gimpy Girls’ Travel Tip

Always ask your hotel for the “handicapped” room - guaranteed to have a roomier bathroom, a bigger bedroom overall and it sometimes even costs less than a “regular” room.

These first-come first-serve Gimpy rooms are available to anyone with mobility, hearing or vision issues, not just wheelchair users. These rooms usually are nearer the front door of the hotel, so you don’t have so far to go to reach your car, a cab or a restaurant. For the deaf, these rooms have lights, in addition to alarms, to alert you to emergencies, such as a fire.

Cait asked for one at Disney World and got a huge corner suite with a bathroom that was the size of a regular hotel room. The bathroom had marble counters, a bathtub with a lift and a shower with grab bars galore.

Another time, while on the road, Cait pulled into Oxford, Miss., at 11:30 p.m. without reservations, ask for the “handicapped” room and got a lovely, well-appointed room larger than most of the rooms at the hotel.

The only drawback is the bed size. Sometimes the beds are doubles rather than queens or kings. So if bed size is important, ask before you take the room.

Eds Note: To see what The Gimpy Girls think about the word “Handicapped” click here.

Bumps For Boomers

The Gimpy Girls are not skiers. Our idea of a rousing day on the slopes is sitting by the lodge fireplace with a rum toddy, a good book and a pair of binoculars to watch the skiers.

But many of our friends are skiers, or rather were skiers before they grew averse to risk. Baby Boomers don’t want to end up in physical therapy and so fewer are taking to the slopes, and when they do it’s on flatter runs so crowded it takes the fun out of it.

Now, however, resorts are working to lure back the Boomers with pioneering programs such as “Bumps for Boomers” - which erases the fear and teaches Boomers to confidently ski - of all things - mogul runs! And to do it without needing quick reflexes or extraordinary agility.

“It’s not a gimmick,” Rose Ries, a 51-year-old psychiatrist from Philadelphia told Read the story. “I was the classic devoted skier who, nonetheless, had no chance in the moguls. Now, tree and mogul runs are the only place I go.”

click here

Making The Outdoors Gimpy Friendly

Wisconsin, Minnesota and Vermont are part of a nationwide effort called “Open the Outdoors,” designed to help people with disabilities find accessible cabins, trails, and hunting and fishing opportunities.

Vermont

In addition, the U.S. National Park Service soon plans to launch a Web site listing accessible trails and programs throughout the United States.

Click here to read more.