And suddenly that’s a whole week gone. I feel like a cut-rate sleeping beauty (albeit rather older and more cynical and with fewer bluebirds to do the washing up), who pricked his finger on a poison 2.25mm needle and fell asleep, forgotten by time, in an enchanted semi-detached castle in Wick.
Reader, I’ve had a chest infection. I felt as though God was squeezing my chest like a tube of toothpaste, and even now my chest froths and wheezes like the last slurp at the bottom of the milkshake and my coughing fits sound like someone unsuccessfully trying to kick-start an old motorbike.
As if that wasn’t enough, on Monday I had my hospital appointment to get my eyes sorted. I should have stayed in bed, but after not being able to see clearly for over nine months I wasn’t going to let the opportunity slip. So Margaret drove me the hundred miles to Inverness, a crisp, clear day, blue sky, sunlight glittering on the ocean, and the start of spring.
I had posterior capsule opacity, a film that can grow over the artificial lens they give you when you get cataract surgery, and which is easily burned off with a laser. First the doctor gave me eyedrops to dilate my pupils so big I resembled a very startled owl. Then she placed a contact lens in the eye to hold it steady and open, directed a very bright light at me that illuminated my skull like a Halloween lantern and began firing the laser much as Han Solo used to shoot down enemy fighters in Star Wars.
It wasn’t a lot of fun, and I think my eyes have only just about stopped watering now, but it was over in ten minutes—and then I could see again. Quite incredible. (You mean this is how the rest of you see the world? Sharp, clear and—in focus? Do you know how lucky you are?) The only problem was, my eyes remained dilated for several hours afterwards, so the drive home in bright sunshine was painful, to say the least, like a migraine hangover.
Only downside is, I can finally see how uneven my knitting really is. (Perhaps I should hold it further away?) Despite everything I’ve made some progress this week, still plugging away down the sleeve. I’ve completed the herringbone and have started the final pattern section which will carry me down the sleeve towards the cuff. (I won’t run the pattern all the way to the cuff, but will leave a few inches of plain knitting between the two, ending somewhere mid-forearm.)
It’s a bit of a shock being able to see my knitting at all, to be honest. I haven’t been able to identify individual stitches for several months now, but now I can see the single black thread running through the cream yarn I’m using. It’s like I’ve upgraded to a High Definition world. I have an urge to stop strangers in the street and read things out to them. I keep waking up and expecting to find it the way it was, and being pleasantly surprised.
In fact, if you’ll excuse me, I think I’ll go and find something to look at right now—just because I can…