And not all lost glasses . . . uh . . . stay lost forever, she wrote unmetrically, having returned in triumph from the Shoe Show store, where the glasses wearer, aged nine, had apparently thought that the boots would fit better with the glasses off . . . or that the boots would look better just slightly out of focus . . . or something . . .
Anyway, the same nice harried Shoe Show lady who had sold us the boots on Christmas Eve went spelunking under the counter and came up with the right pair of glasses. We'd been on our way to the optical shop with the other glasses wearer, aged almost nineteen, to get her new glasses, and I had been about to surrender and ask for another pair for the short person -- actually, I'd been about to burst into tears -- and I had said in tones of utter despondency that as long as we were over that way we might as well stop in though I really didn't think . . .
It is so very good to be wrong sometimes. Especially when the ship you've committed yourself to going down on is the Great Big Un-Love Boat of Despair. Of course, subsequently in the optical shop the shorter glasses-wearer had to endure being barked at by her big sister as well as me every time she tried on another pair of frames, which was approximately every sixteen seconds for about half an hour, while the elder of the junior girl glasses-wearers (I am the Senior, the Queen, the Empress-and-a-Half of Myopia) deliberated. In the end we didn't buy anything, because it's been less than a year since her last pair of glasses, and we wouldn't be buying a new pair at all except that she's going overseas for four months, and that would be when she sits on the glasses she has, or drops them out of a train, or has them nicked right off her face by some astigmatic pickpocket. Anyway, our insurance won't pay for another pair quite so soon; meanwhile, the little optical shop at the eye doctor's, which we'd initially written off as probably too expensive, is offering us a patients' discount, so on Monday we're going comparison-shopping.
Meanwhile, I have finally made an eye appointment for myself, with which it is to be hoped the insurance won't quibble, because the last time I had my eyes checked we didn't even have insurance, and that was . . . Well, let me put it this way. I took a picture of myself in my then-new glasses, and the ropy middle-aged appearance of my neck shocked me. That's how long it's been. Now I don't notice the ropy middle-aged appearance of my neck so much, but that may be because I can't see it very clearly any more. When I do get the new-new glasses, I probably still won't notice my neck, because I'll be too much preoccupied with how ugly the glasses almost certainly will be, if the frames I've seen so far are any indication. Truly. I know that there are people who look nice in 3-D glasses, all thick and rectangular and outer-spacey and everything, but those people are few and far between. The rest of us just look as though we've grown a sort of full-face uni-brow. At least, I think that's how I look, but I can't really tell, even with my nose to the mirror. And I'm thinking that I haven't appreciated my current non-uni-brow glasses nearly enough. The thought of parting with them kind of makes me weep a little.
Anyway, no, not all who wander are lost. Some of us just can't see where we're going, even though we know. Good thing the nine-year-old has found her glasses: And a little child shall lead them.