One of Mary and my favorite post ALS onset yet pre covid activities was the St Louis Speaker Series, held at the Powell Symphony Hall in downtown St. Louis. This series of lectures features interesting people such as David Cameron, PM of Britain, Bill Clinton, Jeb Bush plus a host of non political figures. Occurring about seven times a year, this was one of the new gems we had found in our transition to a different way of life.

It was a warm fall night so we decided to have dinner at an interesting restaurant in a motorcycle museum about a half mile away and then walk, or roll in an electric wheelchair in my case, to the lecture. I fit right in as homeless and handicapped people in wheelchairs are a common sight on these downtown streets.

It was date night! Though it’s hard to look terribly sharp in my condition, Mary was in her best black dress and shiny black heels. After the event was over, we started our late night walk back to the car. A problem arose about halfway there as the heels were starting to cut into Mary’s feet. Finally, I can see an upside to being in an electric wheelchair. Mary sits on my lap and we both go rolling down the sidewalk, with Mary holding her shiny heels just off the ground.

I was an instant celebrity! The homeless and semi homeless men, some of them in wheelchairs, were in awe. “Wow, look at that” some of them said. “Way to go man” another said. One gentleman even gave me a high five. It was a proud moment.