The Villain in my life!
by Vimala Ramu
It so happens that I don’t belong to a family where daughters are bought specs along with a wrist watch as part of their accessories in their teens along with jewellery, as a matter of routine. I never had to use specs till I reached the age of 40. This was necessitated when I took up an assignment as a maths teacher after finishing my B.Ed. I found that I could not see the powers in the algebraic quantities clearly in the text books. Earlier, I had had difficulty in threading a needle and in making out the cricket score on the TV screen, but going in for specs became imperative when my profession required it.
So, I prevailed upon my husband to take me to the optician on M.G.Road as he could also consult the doctor for his own problem.
The doctor made me duly read the letter chart in the mirror, tried different lenses on me. I could see that he was quite amused. He told me, “Your husband seems to have neglected his problem for quite sometime. But you seem to have come on the very first day you had trouble!” I tried to justify myself by explaining all my problems. He prescribed reading glasses for me which I was supposed to put on only while reading, a tedious process where teaching was concerned. The constant ‘taking off’ and ‘putting on’ not only bothered me but distracted the students also.
Next I had to get used to leaving the specs in a safe place, because, I found that the specs had a mind of their own. They were very fond of occupying my seat just before I chose to sit on a particular one. Thus with twisted and broken glasses the replacements had to be made quite frequently. Thank God for Ramu’s habit of buying 2 (pairs) of each purchase. I keep teasing him that ‘wife’ was the only commodity for which he didn’t buy a spare!
Slowly I graduated to the bifocal stage. One gratifying thing I discovered was that I had been equipped with a nose with a normal bridge and my two ears had been placed symmetrically on either side of the head. So, I did not need any custom made frames but could do with a general pair.
So now it was getting used to the two levels as presented by the bifocals. I would go goose stepping whenever I had to negotiate steps.
But what I enjoyed about the new specs was, what I thought was a splash of green colour on the trees was actually a set of clearly visible leaves. What was a blur in the book suddenly became a set of well printed individual letters. I could not only make out the cricket score in the corner of the TV screen but the weave of the player’s shoelace too!
But the blessing turned into a curse when what I thought was a lovely complexion with shiny black hair in the mirror was actually a mass of wrinkles and spots with shaggy pepper and salt (more of salt!)hair. The people around me who I thought were very handsome turned out to be hairy and rough skinned. The unkindest cut of all was on my weighing scales. What I had thought was 58 all along turned out to be 60 when I put on my specs. Surely, my specs couldn’t be weighing 2Kgs! What other explanation could I give for this sudden increase in my ‘slim’ body?
Thus my glasses which could reveal to me a beautiful set of discrete units of nature and fonts could become a villain too in my life. But, there was no way I could get rid of it except GROWING YOUNGER !