for the second consecutive day i had to get up early and get something medical done. this morning it was to the ophthalmic consultants of boston (OCB) to get my eyes checked. the last time i went to the eye doctor was over 3 years ago. i've been using the same pair of disposable contact lenses for the past few months (so i tell myself, i fear it might even be longer). they're so old that imagine mold growing on my eyeballs whenever i wear them. getting off of the charles/mgh stop, i saw my former coworker alex mcguire and i shouted his name as the train door closed between us.

i got to OCB by 8am, on the 6th floor of a large office building. the woman processing my appointment was openly sighing with disgust because one of my doctors had changed the schedule without first telling her. seeing her all worked up over something so trivial made me kind of glad that i don't have her problem. i was told to have a seat in their waiting area, which was basically everywhere, even seats lining the hallways. maybe i'm used to the hospital setting, but i figured i'd probably be waiting for a while, but before i even had time to settle down, i was called into one of the examination room. an assistant named tim did the preliminary check-up, put in some eye drops to test for glaucoma (they stung, but after going to the dentist yesterday, that pain was negligible), then some more drops to dilated my pupils and check my prescription. i don't like it when they tell me to read lines with one eye but then don't change the slide for the other eye. since i already know the sequence of letters and numbers, i'm tempted to just say it back again regardless if i can really read it or not. i went back out in the waiting room, then was called in by the contact lenses doctor. she didn't seem very nice, and was downright hostile when i told her i'd been wearing the same pair disposal contacts for the past few months. "well, you're really supposed to wear your contacts 2 hours before you come to your appointment," she told me, after first scolding me for wearing them at all in the first place. "i'm going to order you a new pair and you come back in a month," she said. i was sent back out in the waiting area one more time, before the normal eye doctor called me into her office. this woman was much nicer, she basically told me my prescription hasn't really changed, that my eyes were perfectly fine, and then checked me one more time for glaucoma (with the purple light probe that feels like she's going to poke me right in the eye), then said i was all set, it probably took 3 minutes total, and she finished off by putting a few drops to counteract the effects of the dilation. i paid my fees (the eye exam was free, covered by my insurance with the exception of the copayment, while the contact lense appointment is extra, but only $45), made by appointment for next week, then left OCB.

since it was still early, i decided to walk to the office, cutting through beacon hill in the process. since my pupils were still dilated, any direct glare from the sun made me wince, so i tried to stay in the shadows, like a vampire. walking by people with my squinting eyes, i wondered if anyone though i was on drugs. i went by the state house and through downtown crossing, stopping at a pastry shop in chinatown to get something to eat, before getting to the office at 9:30am. for the first one our two i couldn't really do any serious work because i couldn't focus on anything on my computer monitors.

the drama at work today was one of the loaner pc's we have died quite suddenly. i figured it was just the power supply, and i was able to do a brain transplant into another computer, which worked out fine. a catastrophe was narrowly avoided since the hard drive that i swapped in contained an exhibit that wasn't backup. i also set up my congress project for total testing, finally able to clear my desk of some equipment, no longer cramped tightly on a folding table with 4 monitors side by side.

i went out for lunch with no place in mind other than to do some exploring. it wasn't the brightest of ideas as my eyes were still sensitive to the light, although much better than they were this morning. i wanted to find some tiny out of the way food place where i could grab a quick bite, and tried going in the direction of the south end, but ended up walking more west than south, and before i knew it, i was in copley square, with the john hancock building looming high overhead. i had to take the subway back to work, i was too far away to just simply walk. after all that effort, i ended up getting a $2 vietnamese sandwich in neighboring chinatown.

it's no surprise that i was tired at work, i was yawning the whole day. i'd been up since 6am and worked until 7pm, a combination of coding, mp3 downloading, ichatting, and hardware setup. back at home, a bag of potato chips, a glass of cold homemade jasmine ice tea, and some soup from a can. even now, 16 hours after my eye exam, my pupils still feel dilated. i'm going to help a restful sleep, the first time since tuesday night where i didn't have to wake up early - i'll be able to sleep as late as 9am!