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.

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.