Since being with my partner R, I've been getting out and about in the wheelchair much more often. Edinburgh is hilly, cobbly, and has some truly exciting kerbs. Now that my PIP has come through, with a lovely backpayment after eight months of waiting, I'm thinking of buying a new wheelchair, one with attendant brakes (also called slowing brakes) to make going downhill a lot easier. This pretty much means the unfortunately-named manufacturer Karma, probably their Robin wheelchair, as the only other one that'll fit me (I'm only 4'11) is the Dove and that seems pretty weird. Right now I have an Invacare Zipper 2 on loan from the NHS, which I have slightly improved by putting blue hockey tape on the handrims and blue reflective tape on the wheels. Does anyone have any thoughts on what to look for? I'm thinking of perhaps getting a power assist thingy in the future, if things continue to go well, but they're pricey and weigh as much as the wheelchair, so not just yet. We actually got up Calton Hill yesterday, with some heroic efforts from R! Do you know, I've lived here 18 years and that was the first time I'd been up it? I am also, being me, thinking about how to smarten it up. Possibly red or red and orange for the handrim tape and reflective stickers, and I'm wondering about finding some sort of foam or cork tape to make it softer as well as warmer and easier to grip. You can get handlebar tape for bikes, that might do the trick, although I suspect I'd need loads. And would orange be better for visibility for the reflective strips, or is that not really going to help? I suppose dusk is the main time when that sort of thing will matter, when not everyone on the road has their lights on. At the same time, I think I need a better wheelchair blanket. At present I'm using a large piece of black fleece folded over four times, which just isn't warm enough. I've been chatting to a chap on a quilting forum about windproof layers and so forth, but if anyone has ideas, do let me know. I need to be able to remove it quickly, since I do end up standing from time to time, whether it's to let R carry the wheelchair up a couple of steps or to go to the loo. What else can be done with wheelchairs? It'll be a self-propelling wheelchair, although R pushes it, since it's occasionally useful for me to help a bit. I'd love for it to look snazzy, not young-child style of course, but neither do I want to look ninety-six in the shade, you know? You can get spoke reflectors for the wheels, but I'm not so sure about those.