I need new glasses.
Having been short-sighted all my life, I can barely remember a time when I haven't worn glasses to bring the hazy blur into pin-sharp focus. For many years I alternated contact lenses with glasses, but in recent years, since crossing the line from single vision to varifocal, I have found contact lenses to be impractical. My optician assures me that nowadays there are vastly improved varifocal contact lenses but I am not convinced.
A few weeks ago I had a routine sight test, which confirmed what I already knew. My eyesight has deteriorated further and I need new lenses, which means new frames too. As I wear glasses all day every day...they're the first thing I put on in the morning and the last thing I take off at night so they are subject to a fair amount of wear and tear. Especially as for the past few months I've had to take them off to do any close work. They invariably get lost in the mess on my desk and are subject to all manner of liquid drips and spills, from glue and paint, to white spirit and turps.
So I duly made an appointment at Specsavers, had a very extensive and professional sight test, and emerged blinking, clutching my new prescription to survey the display racks of frames.
Don't get me wrong.
I don't yearn for the days of huge owl-like frames. I had those for several years and looked unnervingly like Deirdre Barlow, complete with poodle perm.
However, as a wearer of varifocals, contemporary frames present a problem as the various fields of vision have to squeezed into a very narrow area, which means that I have to opt for top of the range technologically advanced lenses, which are, of course, frighteningly expensive.
Nevertheless, I browsed the range of frames on offer, enlisting PP's opinion on as many of them as I could until we both lost the will to live and gave up.
Since then I've checked out frames at several other opticians but can't find any I really, really like. And because I wear them day in, day out, I want to have a pair that at least I can live with.
However my need is now pressing, and I'm determined to get organised this week and find something suitable. Fortunately there was an ad in one of the Sunday newspaper colour supplements for frames I quite like in just the right colour so I'm planning a trip to the town tomorrow to try them out and hope my bank balance can cope with the financial hit.