I last bought glasses at the beginning of 2009, when I was still at school. I reckoned that 18 months on, and about to go to university, I should go and get my eyes tested again ((How it actually happened: my Mum told me to go.)).
This time, I had my eyes tested at Boots, and it was much more modern and fun than my previous opticians.
To begin with I was subjected to some weird tests: the first one did something weird that I don’t remember ((I had to look at a house which would go in and out of focus.)), the second one tested my peripheral vision ((I had to stare at the centre of a grid and say how many dots were lit in the surrounding grid. It was ridiculously hard, but it was meant to be, and I passed the ones that it was important to pass.)) and the third was a photograph of my retina ((With my pupil fully dilated, a flash went off so that a photo could be taken. It was ridiculously bright, and I was dazed for a while, but it was supercool to see my retina: optic nerve, macular, blood vessels and all that stuff.)). My eyes are fine, it turns out.
After a short wait ((Whilst the after-image of the flash faded away.)), I had the proper eye exam. It was weird, but cool. At these exams, I’m used to wearing a peculiar glasses frame into which can be inserted various lenses, and through trial and error the correct lens is determined. But at Boots, the glasses frame is replaced by a huge plastic machine which sits in front of your eyes. You look through it during the tests, but instead of a human changing lenses, it’s all done by a machine. It’s fast.
I did great, or so the optician said. (She also said I was the first person she’d examined who could read the bottom line of the wall chart, but I think that was just flattery.)
It turned out that my eyes had not changed since my last exam, so I had no need to buy new glasses. Still, I was going to get some, as I’ve been wearing my current set of glasses for 18 months now, and they’re showing a bit of wear and tear. I was distraught to find out that I could no longer buy my beloved black plastic-framed cheap glasses. There were similar coloured glasses that had smaller lenses and a much higher price tag, or there were similarly priced, slightly larger glasses that were in a different colour. I opted for a pair of the cheap ones; after all, I don’t need new glasses – I’ll be able to wear my old black glasses again if I ever miss them – so there’s not much point in spending a lot.
I picked them up yesterday and I’m wearing them right now. They’re not bad, but I prefer my black ones. Apparently they pattern is called ‘tortoise shell’, but I call them leopard print. They’re a bit bigger but I doubt anyone will even notice that they’re new.
Will I replace the picture at the top of my blog? I doubt I’ll ever bother.