Generally speaking, there really aren’t any, unless I pay $45 an hour (portal to portal) for an interpreter – and can get the one I understand the best.
This week my local bar association is (once again) meeting in a bar for a social. Not only don’t I drink, the hubbub creates white noise blotting out any chance of hearing anyone. I won’t be attending.
The last time I went to a local bar association “training” it was in a room off to the side of bar/pub and the noise was incredible. I sat on a stool just to the side of the speaker (a judge), tried my best to speech read, and heard about a third of what she had to say. Fortunately, there were printouts I could take back and read. My local bar association doesn’t charge much for association dues so the concept of asking for a terp at all events has never crossed my mind. It would bankrupt the association, unlike the state or Federal bar associations. Still, I find myself quite frustrated. I have not paid my dues this year and am pondering whether it is worth it to do so.
At hearings I can put in for Communication Access Real-Time Translation (CART) and I do fairly well in very small venues (administrative hearings, etc.) however as a long-time member of a 12-step program I find coping nightmarish except at the one Open AA meeting I found with interpreters. I figure a meeting is a meeting and the steps are the steps and as a non-drinker anyway I’m in a good place. :^)
Being Hard of Hearing can be very isolating. It is like being dropped into a foreign land where you don’t understand the language – although hearing dishes being banged together always seems to come through loud and clear. I find going to meetings online (chat rooms/typing) is the best method, but again, it is isolating because a part of fellowship is actually being in the presence of living, breathing people.
What to do, what to do… hmmmmmm