Journal #1

My name is Kunho Kim. As you may have known, three of my friends and i planned to do a road trip this summer to publish a wheelchair accessible cross continental road trip guide book.

Cynthia (Cyn) Cheung, who is a student at Bath University, and I arrived at San Francisco Airport a few days earlier to prepare for the trip. The actual trip begins on the 10th of July.

Prior to the arrival, our plan was that Cyn would arrive in LA on the 7th and meet with her friends at LA, but because of the rental car issue, she had to come to SFO by July 7th 1PM. Fortunately, her flight was not scheduled to arrive in LA on the 7th night, but it was going to arrive on the 6th night. Cyn had barely enough time to arrive at SFO.

Despite the four hour delay of the bus from LA to SF, I saw her at the rental car place at SFO. I arrived at SFO at 12:30PM from Seoul, South Korea. It was not a terrible flight. I usually fly to New York City for my school in Boston, but this flight to San Francisco was substantially shorter. I was escorted to the rental place by a employee of SFO. One good thing about airport is that they always have wheelchair assistance program. The assistant always help disabled or physically challenged persons to pick up their luggages. One excellent aspect of this service is that these assistants know all the shortcuts and fastest way to get to one place to another. Being with them is like being next to the magic genie who we can ask anything and get a best answer ASAP. Anyways, with his help I quickly arrived at the rental car place.

A day before the start of my journey, I noticed that a hand control was not requested for our minivan rental. We asked Hertz whether they could have a hand control set up, but the response we received was that a hand control could not be installed in a mini van. I was very frustrated because without a hand control, I could not drive a car. It would mean a big problem for the project. I quickly contacted Hertz but was not able to receive any responses from the representative. I just hoped for the best and left Seoul.

At the rental place, we were very lucky to meet with a very responsive manager who were understanding of our problem and promptly solved the problem. We were able to get the GMC Yukon XL with a sponsorship from Hertz. They were also able to help us load our luggages!

Well, I spent a night to upload pictures, but I guess the internet is not fast enough to upload these photos. I will try if I get a better connection from other places. 

We went straight to hotel after getting our car. It took us about thirty minutes to get from the airport to the Good Nite Inn Redwood City. The hand control was a bit different from the one that I used in Korea. However, I am getting used to it. 

The hotel did not give us a room with a roll-in bathroom even if we asked for it a few months ago. I was a bit disappointed by the service but they were able to switch the room with the roll-in bathroom on the other day with the customer who stayed at the room. They told me they only had two rooms with roll-in bathroom, but one of which was in repair. 

There is a 24/7 IHOP right next to the hotel and the customers of the hotel can get 10 percent discount from IHOP. 

I am writing this blog on July 10th 7:19 AM. Today the other guys from St. Louis and New York are arriving. Hope everything goes smoothly today 🙂 

~Kunho 

 

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