Prior to moving from Erie, Pa. to Toledo, Oh. I had cataract surgery on both eyes (not simultaneously) and found a “deal” on two pairs of glasses, with blended bi-focal lenses, and had one of the two tinted to make them sunglasses. (I remember calling them “shades” as a smart-guy teen, even though “tinted windows” would have been much closer to the truth.) Well, in the hectic days before moving the dark glasses predictably disappeared. Left, I thought, somewhere in the old digs for the landlord’s crew to find and toss in the trash.
I spent the best part of the last 3 months trying to remember where I might have put the extra pair, hoping to find I’d actually had the wits to pack them with other must-haves to move with us. Now, at 72 and still getting older (thank God) I didn’t have a snowball’s chance of remembering where they were. I even went through boxes which we’ve still not emptied and found nothing. I gave myself a good talking-to about the folly of buying prescription sun glasses at my age. The EGO! The out-and-out self-indulgence of the thing began to weigh on me. And now they were gone, as if someone “up there” was teaching me a lesson.
Well, if you’ve ever moved to a new town in a new state you’ll realize the disruption it causes in everything you do. 3 1/2 months later we’ve come nowhere near settling in and finding a “normal” for ourselves (wife Marge and I) and almost every day I find myself changing a long-held practice to accommodate either the new apartment or the new geography I find myself in. (Yes, I know about that infinitive!) And that’s why yesterday, after grocery shopping, I decided to try my wife’s idea of putting the items in the trunk of the car instead of the back seat as usual.
As I put the first bags in,I noticed two things: First, the pocket on my golf bag where the shiny new white golf balls are kept (I don’t get to keep many of them long enough for them to get dirty), was partially open. Second, as I reached to close it I saw that there was something black showing through the opening: It was the eyeglass case I kept the tinted windows in! I’d actually put them in the place I’d need them the most – with my golf clubs. But in the turmoil of moving and adapting to a new world, I haven’t played golf this year! At all! And so sat the sunglasses, waiting patiently to be found. Sadly, it’s November 6th, with overcast skys predicted until some time in early May of next year. Dudley, my closest friend, thinks all of this is a scream. He laughed so hard when I told him that I had to loan him my handkerchief (yes, I carry one) to dab away the tears. “Serves you right for ever moving, ” he said. I should mention that Dud still resents my move, even though he pick-up and followed me to Toledo.
Oddly, the sunglasses aren’t the only “found” thing in my life right now. For some 23+ years I worked in the Pennsylvania Liquor stores. Not a career I’d recommend to anyone, but a career none-the-less. Well, it was clear from the start that I’d have to find work here in Toledo to make ends meet, so I dutifully filled out job applications on-line (they all seem to insist that you apply on line, and that opens up another can of worms which will undoubtedly be the subject of my next blog post.) And I was delighted Kroger called me for an interview. I was tentatively offered a “shopper’s” job, and asked about work history. The next day I received a training schedule in (you guessed it) the State Liquor store attached to (leased to) the Kroger store. After rejoicing some 11 years ago that I’d never deal with another drunk, or another obvious alcoholic with that specific attitude, here I am! I’m working 4 or 5 days a week part-time, doing the same old thing. I feel like the glasses: Free for a good long time, only to have my nemesis find me hiding and start the whole thing over again! Maybe I should have left the sunglasses where they were until next season!