Sir Braver had an appointment with a local optometrist this afternoon. He was to have a simple eye exam for the sole purpose of meeting the vision requirement for the DMV, for his driver’s license. You know, the one where you look into a machine, read six letters aloud and the person on the other side says “next.” This one didn’t go quite that way.
We arrived a few minutes early. The door to the office was locked but a masked employee promptly came to the door, unlocked it, and mumbled something. She then instructed us to “go to the back and wash your hands.” Unescorted. The back turned out to be a small hallway lined with 3 doors. So we played Let’s Make a Deal and guessed which door was the washroom. The tiny washroom had a sink and a toilet, nothing more. Not even a towel (cloth or paper) with which to dry our hands. After I shook my hands vigorously, Sir Braver got the same employee’s attention and asked for something with which to dry his hands. With difficulty, she entered the tiny room, unlocked the vanity below the sink, pointed, and quickly left. A still-wrapped package of paper towels was then in view. Vigorous shaking remained the chosen option, although Sir Braver found a facial tissue somewhere and used that.
The waiting room contained 6 chairs, all with seat cushions and bare metal decorative backs. Soooo uncomfortable, actually painful to lean back against. Soft music played – two notes. Only two notes – eight counts to each note repeated ad nauseum. Mood music, I guess. We sat and sat and sat and then a gentleman came to the door. He was allowed in and he took a seat. Apparently washing his hands was not necessary.
Sir Braver was finally directed to a small area where he was asked to peer into a machine so the machine could measure astigmatism. For his driver’s license vision test? While he was in there, another employee sitting across the room from me, about 15 feet away, said aloud “Address?” After a few minutes, she said “home address?” Apparently she was asking me, but for some odd reason I had no idea. Although I heard her, I assumed she was talking to someone on a phone. But finally employee 1 came out and she was then asked to get Sir Braver’s address, which she did (mid astigmatism exam).
Another gentleman knocked on the door. He was very casually dressed and not masked, and he was not asked to mask up or wash his hands. He pulled something from a bag, had a discussion with employee 1, handed her the hidden object, and a few minutes later exited the office.
A woman arrived and employee 2 unlocked the door to allow her to enter. She was instructed to wash her hands but did not know where to find the washroom. She was finally pointed in the general direction, after which she was given some information and left only moments later.
Finally the doctor, wearing an ill-fitting mask, emerged and asked Sir Braver to step into her office. She did whatever she needed to do in her own weird way. Finally after some craziness over paperwork and incoherent exchange of information, we were free to go – like stepping out of the twilight zone.