So, I being the trusting fool I am .. decided that since I ran out of my contacts that I brought from the states and I had not had a new eye exam since I have been here.  I would still to my old prescription and get these cool, interesting and cheap contacts that are available in China.   I already wore colored contacts so this cannot be much different.   I asked around the school and of course one of my students, had a friend of a friend that had a shop that sold the contacts in Shanghai.  After telling her my power strength she surprised me with a new free pair of brown, enlarge your pupil contacts.  I tried them on and they were a good fit… and I actually even looked good.   I was saved.
Or was I.   After 4 months of daily wearing of the contacts, I got a very bad eye infection.  It was so bad I had to put a bandage on it to go to school.   It looked too ugly for people to look at… my entire eye was a deep blood-red.. you could not even see my pupil of my eye.. and it was running constantly.  I looked horrible.. and it was very painful.  I attempted to wear one contact and have the other eye covered.. but of course my depth perception was off and I could not determine the distance of the cars when crossing the street and almost killed myself.  This was not going to work.   After a horrible day trying to teach, answering everyone’s question about what is wrong with my eye and being asked if I went to the hospital to get an IV (chinese hospital’s answer to every sickness) .. and told to drink hot water… Chinese people’s answer to every sickness .. I decided to go home early.
When Michael got home he had brought me some antibiotics and pain killers… to help me to sleep and told me I needed to stop wearing the contacts and buy some glasses.  I agreed.  No matter how much I hated glasses…( since I was 16 years old.. I had worn contacts..) I was a little afraid that something was seriously wrong and decided my eye sight was more important than my vanity.
So, today my eye was clearing up almost back to normal.  After going two days without contacts or glasses.. just wandering blindly around China.. I went to the eye glasses shop to see what I could find.  I was very surprised at cleanliness and the the efficiency. (China is not known for its sanitary)  The shop looked similar to a Pearl Vision… but had all the glasses in glass cases .. not on the wall so you could try.  I had to ask the lady to get pairs for me to try so I could view them.  I decided on a titanium frame that had invisible handles… (that is what they called them) … they look like the glasses are floating on my face.  Pretty cool and more fashionable than the cat-eye black rimmed glasses I use to wear.. or the big .. upside 80s glasses I thought I looked good in.   Then came the eye exam.  Nothing spectacular… one machine. The one where you look at the little farm-house until it is clear.    Then I got up and put on some old fashion Ben Franklin glasses, while he shoved glass slides into them.   I had to read the chart… which wasn’t letters .. but symbols… point up, point down, point right  or point left.    I guess  did not realize that most Chinese don’t know the English alphabet so they use these symbols.  Interesting.
After using my improving Chinese language skills  to talk to them about lens, and negotiate the price.. I ended up with the invisible titanium frames and nonscratch lens .. for 700rmb  ($108).  I did not know how to say tinted in Chinese .. so I left them clear. ( need to work on my vocab more)   Not bad though… and I walked out with them .. 1.5 hours later.

I can see again… and just in time.  I was started to get headaches and not be able to see my computer… and that just cannot happen.   Will I give up contacts….?  nay.. I am too vain… but I will narrow down the time I wear them and wear my new glasses 80% of the time…  I do need to look good at the club, you know!!!

until next time….

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