Four things, he says to the eye doctor, and reads off his (mental) list as doctors fluster him.
Ok, she says.
Thing one: it turns out he does not need new glasses. He just hates trifocals.
Trifocal – sounds like a magazine for old Buddhists.
Thing two: she prescribes him a salve and recommends eye drops.
Thing three: actually, the eye drops were for thing three.
Thing four: she shines a bright light into his eyes while his chin is rested on a thing and his forehead pressed up against a related thing. She says, Look at my right ear. Then, she says, Look at my left ear. She said that last time, he recalls. She must have said it thousands of times.
He wonders if she has had plastic surgery.
He isn’t sure. Hard to say, without his glasses. Maybe she’s just in great shape and aging super, super well.
She shines a bright, vertical, white light into his eyes. Cool, I can see the blood vessels in my eyes, he says. Uh huh, she says.
He loves the blood vessels in his eyes.
He loves the pattern they make, which reminds him of the wall paper in an early 19th-century bordello. Although he doubts they actually had such patterns, eye blood vessel patterns, he thinks it would not look out of place on flocked red wall paper in the sort of bordello he used to have dreams about until, in the final dream, it went out of business.
The blood vessels look black and branch efficiently although not perfectly symmetrically against a sepia background.
He just loves them.