Even being totally blind for over 20 years, the prospect of a guide dog was never persuasive. A warm, cuddly companion who could give me new freedom to roam was very attractive. I could bear the costs if the hound could put up with my busy, travelling work life.
The great problem was that dogs have to retire. This means that a blind person, having gained new freedom and independence courtesy of their hound, has to return to the old days of relying on a white cane. Guide Dogs can’t keep up with the demand so the people they seek to help face repeated long periods of being without their guides (www.ottl.org.uk.) It all becomes too unreliable and risky. One of my blind friends was in this difficult position: she tried to carry on with her previous “dog-enabled” lifestyle until she came a cropper, fell badly and ended up in A&E with a fracture.
I’ve stuck to my cane and very untrained human guides in preference to such unpredictable situations. I may have less independence some of the time but at least have a reasonably consistent level of risk!
Nice to have positive feedback on the cooking demos:
“Thank you so much for such a wonderful session yesterday. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and was so excited to hear about your bees, mead and making ratatouille and gazpacho soup. In the afternoon I was helping with the Volunteers in the local allotment, and one of the gardeners kindly gave me two of his famous cucumbers. They are so delicious, and I will use them with my tomatoes in the garden to make your gazpacho soup. I can’t wait to make it!” “Just to let you know that I have booked to go to The Eye Contact Exhibition in Southampton (details below), and I am so excited about meeting you and the rest of the Open Sight team in person.”
The next free on-line cooking demo features gluten-free frangipane, studded with fresh raspberries to serve with a scoop of the raspberry ice-cream. Quick, simple and delicious. Join us live at 10:30 on Monday 12 September, just sign up for free at: https://frangipane-dessert-baking-blind.eventbrite.co.uk
Hear about my prizewinning international cooking tour, swap tips and discover some useful kitchen equipment at 1415 on Wednesday 28 September at the free Open Sight Eye Contact exhibition.
The exhibition will be open 1000-1600 at St Mary’s Stadium, Southampton. Free parking at the stadium or book free transit from the station. Pre-register for the event at: