things that make me go hmm

Glasses in Taiwan are CHEAP.  I love shopping for glasses here.  In fact, for the past 7 years all my glasses have come from Taiwan.  But, I have always used a prescription from the States.  And, in fact, my prescription hasn't changed in over 10 years--right at -3.50 for both eyes. 

(Oh, yeah, just FYI, here in Taiwan--everyone knows their eye glasses prescription.  It is often a small talk conversation starter.  They are always shocked that I am like "I don't know.  I don't care.  As long as my Doc knows it's all good.")

Anywho, for a few months now, I've been feeling like things are getting a little blurry in the distance.  I've just kinda blinked a few times, then ignored it.  But, these past two weeks it's gotten even more noticable.  My eyes are constantly adjusting while I am driving.  I can't read street signs until I pass them.  All neon signs (and trust me there are tons of those here) all have rough, blurry edges around them.  It's enough to give one a headache--oh right that's me--have had a headache for two weeks now.

21069048thmSo, Friday I quit ignoring it.  I went into an eye glasses shop.  The eye doc (we'll call him ED) uses a machine to find out what prescription I might need, then uses another machine to find out the strength of my current glasses.  ED puts the new prescription in those funny little eye doc glasses, "Is that more clear?"  I, of course, say "yes," but then I add "but still not clear enough."

ED changes a few of the lens, making it more clear.  He then proceeds to tell me that my new prescription is only slightly stronger than my old one, implying I am being over sensitive about my sight.  I tell him all my vision woes and that I really do think it is time for a new prescription.  This is the conversation that follows:

ED: "so, is this more clear?"
Me: "yes. it is."
ED: "so is more clear better?"
Me: (in my head "uhhh . . . duh!" but instead polietly say) "the clearer, the better"

He has me walk around the store and look out the window.  I tell him that things down the street are still not so clear in my left eye.  He changes a few more things, and we repeat the process two or three more times. 

Finally, when I am pleased with the clarity, we sit down to order the new lenses, he tells me something very complicated, and I don't get it.  So, I tell ED one of my favorite Chinese phrases "ting bu dong" (which means, "I hear you, but I don't understand you"). 
ED then tries again, I get the idea better, but am still not completely sure . . . But, I do know that my glasses will have different prescriptions on each lens--I am guessing becuase I have an astigmatism.  Anyway, because "[I] like to see clearly" he told me that he will do this for me.  I also got the point that ED doesn't usually do three different prescriptions on one lens for someone whose astigmatism is as low/small as mine, but again "since [I] want to see clearly" he is willing to do this for me. 

Uh, yeah.  Seeing clearly is important! 

No wonder all my students squint at the board even though they are wearing their glasses.  They must not have stressed to their own Mr. ED how important it was to them that they see clearly.  Hmmm.

**Addendum: Picked up my old glasses with my new lenses tonight!  Wow!  The world just looks better--crisp, shiny, and CLEAR!!!!  I love it.  Now, for my headaches and tired eyes to go away!


  1. yay for seeing better! =)
    yes, i also love how easy and inexpensive it is to get glasses in Taiwan (and how stylish the frames and thin the lenses are).


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