Parvinder Chawla was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis when she was 15. A young girl who played sports, and was a certified Kathak dancer was bogged down by her wheelchair. She couldn’t walk any more, but her dreams stayed alive. Today, at 46, the free spirited woman travels across the world alone in her wheelchair.
After facing all odds, Parvinder realised the importance of staying positive. She made good friends from across the world over the Internet, and always had her friends and family to support her. “I changed my attitude towards the disease. And I give the credit to people around me. My friends have been my most ardent fans. They encouraged me to get my front tooth fixed when the disease made it protrude, saying it did not suit my face. My mother kept encouraging me to walk. We left no stone unturned,” Parvinder told the Huffington Post.
Parvinder, with the encouragement of her father, a restaurant owner in Mumbai, decided to travel to London, where she had made friends with a couple over the Internet. When she went and stayed with them in London, they were very supportive and took her around. This was the beginning of many journeys to follow. Since then, the solo sojourner has traveled across 11 countries, including the USA, Jakarta, Bali, among other places.
In India, however, she has to think twice about her destination. In an interview published in Yahoo, she said, “While travelling in India, I always have to think twice and be sure of the place I choose to go. The government has to make serious efforts towards accessibility of the physically challenged people at tourist places.”
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