Rips Country Inn Review

Rips Country Inn

Most review the food, but since there are a lot of food reviews, I am reviewing the place itself, but from an accessibility stand point.

I am in a wheel chair, have been for some years now, and while many places are, or are supposed to be, accessible, they meet the minimum standards for accessibility, which are not always comfortable from a realistic view.

I’ll start with the parking lot. Though there are the required handicapped spaces in front, if I arrived at a time the spaces were taken it was ok, while there is ample parking, the spaces on the corners of parking rows are actually Hash lined to prevent parking, the effect makes the spaces next to them handicap van accessible, so a ramp can be deployed.

The walk way into the building is set flush with the parking lot, so you needn’t find a ramp, but Just a space between two cars. The walkway itself is paved with tiny stones, so it is not difficult to roll even a manual wheelchair up it.

The outer door is not heavy so it is easy for a person in a wheelchair to open the door and slide into the front lobby, the inner door is just as light, but usually there is someone there to open the door for you.

While much of the restaurant has tables with booths, there is a section of the dining room that is all freestanding tables, this is usually where groups go and what is easiest for persons in wheelchairs. The hosts do ask if your party wants a chair removed so it is easy for you, in the wheelchair, to get up to the table. (They didn’t mention the wheelchair I just threw that in).

This dining room is not crowded so it is easy to wheel around there and get to your table. The table itself is tall enough to get fully under the table while your feet are still on the wheelchair pads, and without hitting or scraping your knees.

The bathroom here, is decently spacious inside, and ADA compliant. The sink has enough space underneath of it so that a person in a wheelchair can roll up to the sink, and use the faucet.

In all, I give it 5 placards out of 5 for comfort and ease of getting around.

Nando’s Peri Peri Review

Edit: It was suggested that I develop a rating system for my reviews. If you’ve already read this review before, scroll down to the bottom for my rating.

This is my accessibility review of Nando’s Peri Peri which is a Peruvian/South African restaurant.

Most review the food, but since there are a lot of food reviews, I am reviewing the place itself, but from an accessibility stand point.

I am in a wheel chair, have been for some years now, and while many places are, or are supposed to be, accessible, they meet the minimum standards for accessibility, which are not always comfortable from a realistic view.

While the entrance has two doors, they are not heavy as to give a lone wheelchair user a struggle, and the inside door is far enough from the outside door that it gives a sort of “landing” between the doors that they aren’t in your way. But even so, there is always a greeter who is happy to open the door for the disabled and abled alike.

Once inside, the run up to the counter to order, which is at the, relative, back of the restaurant is comparatively short, and wide enough that you (in the chair) can approach the counter with, and next to, a companion.

From the order counter it is an easy wheel around to the dining room. You don’t have to worry about taking your food with you as they begin making it to order and will bring it out to you.

The dining room is not congested, so wheeling around takes little effort, and once at the table it is easy to move a chair out of the way to wheel under and sit comfortably.

The bathroom is standard and has an easily accessible, and private handicapped stall. The only issue is that it’s the only toilet in the bathroom. In the men’s room there is a urinal. My wife did not go in the lady’s room.

In all, the only thing I needed to concern myself with was the level of capsaicin in the food I wanted to deal with.

I give Nando’s Peri Peri ♿️♿️♿️ Handicapped Placards out of 5.

Apple’s New Floating Keyboard

iOS 13 has this new keyboard you can use. If you hold the keyboard icon

Keyboard Icon

You can select the Floating keyboard which will shrink the keyboard down to one side so you can more easily type with one thumb on the iPad (especially the Pro models).Floating KeyboardBy default it comes in on the left side, but it can be moved anywhere on your screen. The iPad will remember the position so when you need the keyboard, it comes back into position.

It’s fine for regular peck typing, but it allows for swipe typing that many users report as a faster and highly intuitive method of typing.

The ability to move the keyboard, and be able to access it using one thumb, is allowing me start writing again.

I am losing dexterity in my left hand, so it is difficult to use my left hand and thumb to type, and typing with just my right hand on an iPad Pro is slow and tedious.

Granted I was overcoming my limitations with the large keyboard by using the dictate function, but it was a little annoying as I needed to have an environment without other talking or sounds. If it picked up another voice, I’d get erroneous text in my writing.

If I were in a public space, I don’t necessarily want everyone hearing what I’m saying.

Also, when dictating, I’d have to go back and edit out my filler words (um, uh…etc.) I use when thinking of the next thing to say. This got frustrating, or I had to be careful of my speech pattern.

The swipe is fairly accurate in predicting the word you mean to type. In the few (and far between) incidents where it picked up a different word, in the predictive text area will be three other words that could have been the word you meant to type and, by selecting one of those words, you can replace the mistaken word.

Even if both of your hands work fine, so accessibility is not as much of a concern, the smaller keyboard would be useful for anyone, but it’s especially useful from an accessibility standpoint.

With NaNoWriMo coming up next month (it’s October as of this writing) more people can now participate, those for whom writing has become difficult and a chore.

Floor Broken and Pipes Laid

When they started work, Booth Construction broke through my basement floor and laid the pipes to the sewer. This work was done very quickly and efficiently.

Pipes laid and connected

They had to dig my front yard to take and bury the pipes to connect to my sewer line.

Front yard dug

Once all of the pipes and lines were connected, they filled in the trenches cut in the floor and prepared to pour concrete.

Covered, Mesh

This is were the bulk of the higher price is. The other estimate had a mulching toilet listed on the work. This means he didn’t have plans on burying the pipes. I am much happier with buried pipes even though it cost me more. Booth was also sure to have this work county inspected. He also he estimated in time frames for all the different inspections that will need to be done (framing, plumbing, electrical, etc.)

Accessible Garage Conversion

My home is an older (built 1963) 2 story house. My mobility went down dramatically about 3 years ago and I have not been able to climb our stairs to go into the master bedroom upstairs. So we turned our dining room into our master bedroom. The half-bath on the main floor is not big enough for me to drive my wheelchair into so it is with a bit of difficulty that I get in there. This situation has reached to limit of tolerable.

3 months ago we started shopping out contractors and getting estimates on converting the one car garage into an accessible bathroom and bedroom suite. As with any contractor work you’ll want done, we got multiple estimates.

The first guy had a decent price and a good write up of what he was going to do. Sent a contract detailing the work he was going to do.

The second guy I met with, listened to his idea, thought about it for a few days, and fired him right off. After thinking about it, I realized I was not as comfortable with him as I’d like. Not that I felt unsafe, but he kinda felt like when you have a friend with a cousin who can do the work and give you a good price. This would need to be a well done job.

The third guy we met with, estimated about 3 times as much. He also gave is a write up with his estimate.

The decision seemed clear…Then I scrutinized the two estimates and write ups side-by-side. The difference was clear.

The first guy, it seemed, was NOT going to take care of all of the checks and balances that would make this conversion resalable with the house…Oh. My. God!

So, with another cut, we now had to determine whether to look some more or go with this rock solid submission.

He lives and has done work in Bowie, MD and his company has been in business since the 70s (over 40 years). We went around the neighborhood, to houses he had done work for and talked to the people about his work. Not only did they have good thing to say, but I also did my research on the company and also found just good things. So, regardless of the greater price, we went with Booth Construction, 301-464-1256.

So why pay for the more expensive renovation? The saying is, “The cheap comes out expensive.” My grandmother always said, “A good thing’s not cheap, and a cheap thing’s not good.” Basically, the money we spend now, will not cost us later.