As I wrote out the prescription, the child had wandered back to a wall with display pieces. He took off his new glasses and reached up to the full extent that he could to unmount the black soda frame. Having done so without dropping them, he quickly put them on his face and ran to the mirror. He let a muffled giggle slip through in excitement, distracting his mother from her hunt for a pair of sunglasses.
“What are you doing, Raj!” she said. It wasn’t a question. “Don’t you understand? I have already bought a pair for you. You don’t even have a black shirt to wear with it!” she squealed. “Don’t embarrass me!”
“Then let’s buy a black shirt! I want a black shirt for my birthday!” wailed the child.
“Don’t be stupid. Your father has already given you a gift. Stay put now. Go sit on that chair until I pay the eye doctor.”
With disappointment pouring from his gait, the child slumped onto the singular chair next to the billing table. Some minutes passed as I waited for the bill to be printed from the age old machine. The child had taken a liking to the rubber band ball and kept himself occupied in the meantime. “Here’s the bill and prescription” I said to her. The woman walked up to me with the pair of sunglasses she had most recently taken off the shelf. It was a bright-yellow retro style frame complemented with dark brown glass. Then again, she herself was much more flamboyant than the poor pair. “I’ll take these too” she chimed in her high voice.
“You don’t have a yellow shirt, mom!” said the kid. “Yeah, I do, Raj.” “No you don’t, but I guess it doesn’t matter, they’ll match your undies”
“What did you say?” she flushed.
“The yellow undies you wore today, mom. Remember?” That left her dazed, the pink visible under the twenty feet of makeup on her face as she stared at mine expressionlessly. A slight grin broke across my face and I quickly regretted it. She attempted recovery, fishing for cash in her purse and then thrusting it in my face. “Just his one pair a’ glasses” she barked, and reached for the door, her legendary undies visible for a moment under her white pants, or I could have just imagined that part. She then scurried out the door, managing to stomp her feet at the same time. The 8-year-old followed, trailing behind her, completely unaware of what he had done. He still had the rubber band ball, but I decided against stopping them for that. Maybe he knew what color underwear I was wearing too.