Mrs. Hillbilly Mom spent Friday at the local junior college, with her pupil competitors in the science fair. Every year, like clockwork, she shows up at this event. Every year, like clockwork, she wonders how such a public institution can avoid complying with the ADA.
For such a large facility, you would think there would be more restrooms. And at least one restroom that can accommodate the differently abled. But no. Three stalls here. Three stalls there. Tiny, tiny stalls. So tiny that today, a colleague even commented to Mrs. HM, "I could hardly pull my pants up and buckle my belt. Those stalls are SMALL! You can barely get the door open to get out. I don't know why they have to open IN."
"Don't I know it! And the toilets are so LOW! They're hard to plop down on, and hard to get up from. With my knees, it takes me forever." Let the record show that Mrs. HM has been troubled since around Christmas time by swelling, grinding, painful knees. Not sure what's going on there. But sometimes, she can hardly walk when she gets out of bed. Same when standing up from sitting a while. She has to let the joint fluid redisperse or something. To loosen up for walking.
Well. Good news of sorts. ONE of the two women's restrooms has been updated. And by updated, I mean it still has two tiny stalls, but now has one larger stall for the differently abled. With a door that also opens in, but with room for a wheelchair or walker. And with a gripping bar on the wall. Let the record show that Mrs. HM had no qualms about using this stall. It's not like the supple youth competing in the science fair were going to need it.
The restroom updates include self-flushing toilets. Not that these are newfangled and scary to Mrs. HM, who experienced such modern technology way back when she did her student teaching, at the rich high school in her college town.
So...I was hoisting myself up from doing my business, waiting for that toilet to self-flush, when the most disturbing grinding noise sounded throughout the stall. "Great! What have I done to my knee now? That CAN'T be good for it!" It almost made my stomach churn, I tell you.
And then I was fully standing, not moving my knee, and realized that the grinding was still coming from the new toilet just before the self-flush.
Mrs. Hillbilly Mom is not the only one who needs to work out some kinks.