Prepare to enter the wild and wooly world of an adult with Aspergers Syndrome, a form of autism characterized by intellignce, quirks, social difficulties and downright strange and oddish behaviours.

People with Aspergers generally are high functioning in everyday life but have great difficulty connecting with others due to the inability to read faces, body language and subtle verbal clues. They also tend to take words literally and have a hard time multi-tasking.

Oversensitivity to touch (clothing has to be soft and often the tags removed), light (do not leave home without the sunglasses), sound (loud noises and noisey places are avoided), taste (many Aspies have quite a limited diet and are frequently very picky eaters) and smells makes the everyday existence more of a challenge.

Fasten your seatbelts and come on in...
To find out more about what Aspergers is..please check out my earliest blog entries

Monday, February 13, 2017

What To Expect Moving to Oregon, Things they don't tell you

There are two major issues about moving to Oregon that throw this Multiple Autistic for a loop.
One is that homeless people are everywhere; sleeping on park picnic tables, examining cracks in sidewalks, rooting through dumpsters and holding signs in front of stores and businesses. I never know what to expect as I pass a "sign flyer", the polite name for beggars. Most of the time they say nothing but you never know when a complete stranger will ask you for spare change, "anything will help." It's unnerving for me, as their behavior is completely unpredictable. I avoid popular begging spots whenever possible.
You will see tents under bridges, in the woods, alongside streams and within busy parks. Expect to pass downtrodden people as you walk anywhere downtown. Don't be surprised to see people pushing shopping carts full of all their earthly possessions.
One of the oddest things is that a substantial percentage of homeless have dogs, personal pets. I even saw one young man walking along the highway with a large macaw parrot on his shoulder.
I'd never seen such sights, hailing from a small, northern Michigan city of 7,000.
The other big unexpected, which sends this autistic running out the door, is the large volume of service dogs that can be found in stores...all types of stores, any stores. I recently turned a corner at a favorite thrift store, only to find a large Doberman taking up half the aisle. Did I mention he was Big? It was quite clear that his owner had a disability, thus the dog was perfectly legal, yet...it frightened me. Maybe it's because dogs in shops are outside my scope of what to normally expect inside buildings. Maybe it's because the dog was huge. All I know is that I felt scared, shaken and unsettled. I left immediately to eliminate the risk of turning a corner and coming face-to-face with it again.
Expect to see dogs of all sizes, shapes and temperaments at local shopping places.
I'm still glad I moved. Overall, Oregon is a Great place to live. Just wanted to throw out a warning for the few things that I have yet to get used to.
Just sayin'

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