My Summer Trip at Sea with iLevel

While I have been experiencing the warmth and what I call “endless summer” in Florida, it is starting to get warmer up in the north. So naturally, when I speak with my friends from New York, We are making some summer plans. If you know me, you know that I love the outdoors. So last week me and my friends had a big video call about our yearly guy trip. Sometimes, we go to Las Vegas or the Caribbean. With all the restrictions due to COVID, we are unsure about what might be open and to what degree. So, for this summer, we have decided to do a boating trip.

Planning Our Trip

One of my friends has a boat that can accommodate 15 people. We figured this would be the best and safest way we can all hang out with each other. Currently, our plan is to depart from New York and take the boat to the Carolinas. Then, we camp in the Carolinas on the beach and then sail back up to New York. Our trips are usually 5-6 days when we go, so we figured this will allow plenty of time to travel. We won’t have to worry about flying or restrictions. It’ll be safe for us and we’ll get to spend time together.

I’m actually looking forward to the trip this year. It’s more of an adventure. My friends are always very accommodating of my physical needs and my friend’s boat is big enough that I can take my Edge® 3 Power Wheelchair. We usually take my buddy’s boat out every year on the Hudson River and normally I leave my power wheelchair at the marina because we return the same day. This year will be the first year where my friends will be lifting my motorized wheelchair on to the boat to bring with us. Normally when I board the boat, one or two of my friends just pick me up and carry me onto the boat and put me on the couch or the outdoor table. Obviously, I cannot move from that spot once I’m there, but my friends are really good about bringing me drinks and food. Since we are bringing my motorized wheelchair on the boat this time, I’ll be more independent and can move around the boat whenever I want.

Having a Backup Plan

When I told my parents our plans for this year’s guys trip, they thought It was risky because of loading and unloading my motorized wheelchair onto the boat. So, to put myself at ease, I will also bring my Go-Go® mobility scooter just to have as a backup if we want to go to shore for something. I wonder if this will be the first time iLevel® technology will be sailing on a privately owned boat. I know a lot of Quantum® power wheelchairs have been on cruises. Still, I have yet to see one on a privately owned boat sailing the ocean.

Talking it Out

I’m looking forward to the trip but in my mind, I always think of the worst case scenarios. So, I have made a list of things that I’m concerned about. Before we depart on our trip, I will sit down with the guys and let them know all my concerns, so we are on the same page. I will not let my disability stop me or hold me back from this trip. There is always a way to make what you want to do a reality. I’m thankful that I have friends who understand.

About Josh McDermott: Josh is a brand ambassador for Quantum Rehab®. He is a public speaker and has served as a goodwill ambassador for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Josh lives in New York and loves to travel. Click here to learn more about Josh.


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