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Eye Of The Beholder November 7, 2007

Posted by Mitch in General.

I’ve had a gammy eye for the past week. I woke up last Tuesday and wasn’t able to open my eye properly. Leaving it a day to see if it developed and I was able to recognise it as a mosquito bite, I was a little shocked when I woke up the next day to find that it had worsened. Now, as much as I didn’t really want to have to go to a Japanese doctor whilst I was here (let’s face it – what were the chances of that happening?), I didn’t relish the thought of parading around school looking like Shrek. So I made my way down to the local practice. Unfortunately, no English speaking teachers were able to accompany me and so I left school, armed with a bit of paper stating my symptoms in Japanese and took my life in my hands. Assured that doctors in Japan are fluent in German and that communication with him would therefore be easy, I wasn’t fearful. In fact, I was quite thankful to my swollen eyelid for giving me a chance to have a chat in German.

But, nothing goes as planned in this country and it turned out that he could speak no more German than I can Japanese. After saying a few monosyllabic words to the effect of “You’ll have to wear a patch” and “Don’t rub it or you’ll go blind” (I’ve heard that one before), I was escorted to the pharmacy, sporting my new, fashionable eye patch. Not a cool one with a skull and crossbones on it; no, they’re reserved for the cool Nihonjin kids. I was given a charming white number which stretched across the entire width of my face. Needless to say, I looked hot. In fact, I’m now in talks with Dolce, Gucci and Primark over me being the new face for patches. Watch this space.

Luckily, the dude in the pharmacy was able to speak OK English and so was able to tell me the dosage I needed to take of each of the 413 different drugs I was given. I made my way, tentatively, home, hoping to dear God above that all my kids would be home by that point and therefore not in the street, waiting to jump out at me and ask me for money or food, as they’re so wont to do.

I got home safely and decided that the doctor was just exaggerating by telling me to wear the patch for 24 hours. So I wore it for 14, deciding that I’d prefer to take one of my few days of leave than venture into the lion’s den wearing The Monstrosity. I followed his advice and didn’t get it wet in the shower (my eye, that is. I took the patch off pre-shower), but was screwed if I wasn’t going to wash my hair, as he also suggested. Let’s just take a moment to examine the outcome, had I followed his instructions. I would have, firstly, worn a bright white, surgical patch to school. I would also not have had a shower or washed my hair either. Did he want me to be a minger for an entire day? Believe me, I have no trouble making myself look a twat at school – I really didn’t need any help in that matter.

Having taken most of my pills (I was supposed to finish the course of drugs on Monday, but I forgot to taken them a couple of times and so the ones I take after lunch today should be the last ones…unless I forget again) my eye has now returned to normal and I can blink properly, open my eye fully and even rub it when the feeling takes me. Life is once again OK.

This weekend just gone, I went to Shimonoseki, which, as I’m sure I’ve mentioned before, is the largest city in Yamaguchi. In fact, it is home to the only Starbucks in the prefecture (still haven’t tried it out, Starbucks being much of a muchness wherever you are in the world). A group of us were there to celebrate Phoebe’s birthday in style – okonomiyaki and karaoke: could we be more Japanese?

That said, this coming weekend will see a resurrection of Englishness. I’m hosting a Chav Party. My costume is finished, complete with earrings, bling and a cap. To be honest, I think the only thing that could make it hotter would be if I wore my patch…

Till next time!

Me and the Patch



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