I discovered today that, while I love to spend money, I never enjoy spending it on anything that is a necessity rather than a luxury. There’s no joy in being compelled to spend it, even if I like what it results in.
The notion of a visit to the optician has flickered on and off my radar for months. A slight elevation in the number of headaches, tired eyes and the other various warning signs were noted and promptly ignored. But since shift work gives me time off in the week, I took advantage of this free afternoon to let a man with questionable dental hygiene shine a light in my eyes. I can’t help feeling I would have much the same experience if I gave one of the cats a MagLite.
No, it wasn’t entirely pointless, since it seems that my eyesight has decreased by a full point in each eye since my last test. So far, so good. I got to test drive my new contacts while selecting new frames. I am thoroughly over the rimless thing, since I always feel like they’re one nasty breeze away from blowing off my face. But smarmy salesguy masquerading as a junior optician well and truly got on my tits my insisting that every pair of frames over £400 looked perfect on me. I decided to ignore him (tempting though one pretty set were) and plumped for something decidedly nearer my price range, though not something that has pictures online, boo.
Much bureacracy and too much money later, I emerged unblinking into the high street. Jesus and the pink fluffy bunnies, I had no idea how utterly shit my eyesight had been until I saw the difference. Colours were brighter, nothing was fuzzy in the distance, and most importantly the contact lenses removed the slightly lopsided feeling my old glasses always managed to give me. The good people of suburbia may have thought that I was either high or newly arrived in the planet, such was my constant expression of wonder. Lines were sharp, focus was fabulous and I could tell which one was my bus from the second it turned the corner, instead of hedging my bets until the last minute. A modern day miracle, indeed.
It may be my girlfriend’s familial exile to the North (and seeing motorway signs saying simply “The North” never fails to make me smile, because that’s how it is, people. London, and everything above it) but I’m feeling distinctly broody. Perhaps the nesting instinct is natural in the face of a brand new home of our own, but partly it’s my peculiar hetero-envy. I may not run that way chemically (though sometimes I could fake it convincingly, cf. Steven Gerrard if he gets us past Chelsea tonight) but I am jealous of how easy it is to get married somewhere exotic, make a baby with a simple bit of wham!bam!thankyouPampers! I know I can have all those things, but it runs against my attraction to the simple life. Stupid biological imperative.