May 28, 2020

On the Road & My Apologies

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On-the-Road Experience.

Being visually impaired in the road is challenging too.

And my sincere apologies.

And at his point, I also want to apologize to all the drivers who slow down and give me a sign to cross the road - Sorry guys, I don't see you in your car….


At some point, there was that alarming moment. Being a passenger in a car, I rubbed my "healthier" eye, i.e., watching the street with the worse eye only, and suddenly a truck driving in front of us was "gone".

Ooops – that's not so funny anymore, even though I tried to take it with humor: "I'll always have a clear run".

Over time, vision also deteriorated in my other eye. Just that instead of a "blind spot" it rather was a "blind circle". This circle had a kind of a "hole" to look through. And also, there was still space to look through between the blind spot of one eye and the blind circle of the other eye. But again, overtime, spot and circle became "thicker". The effect was, that this "blind circle" and the "blind spot" of the initially more affected eye superimposed. Similar to a lunar or solar eclipse. So maybe you can imagine that for me suddenly part of the whole picture was just gone.

Stop driving

This was the reason why, more than 10 years ago, I had to get acquainted with the idea that I had to reduce driving a car. In the beginning, I still could drive shorter distances with less pace. 
Eventually, my speed was so bad, that probably most bicycles were faster than me (sigh). Therefor I had to give up driving. That was really hard for me. I loved driving and was used to take my car everywhere.

It had taken me a while to realize that. Roadsides, oncoming cars were becoming harder to recognize, and even when looking in the wing mirror, I was  under a delusion more and more often. 

Illusion? Yes, I really mean that. My brain seems to play - not always funny – tricks on me. That's how it tricked me over a longer period of time by filling in the "gaps" in the recognizable picture with a "presumable picture". 
"Beg your pardon?" would be the question right now for sure. Find the answer with respect to the "tricky brain" in another post, because it's a lengthy one. It seems, the brain then just fills the "empty" areas with the "presumable" picture.

Actually quite clever. At least you always seem to have a "complete picture" - but with a small flaw.

It is dangerous!

Attention! When the road looks clear (because everything is evenly gray in the street, or the meadow is green), that does not mean that it actually IS clear. This also means: First LISTEN before crossing the street. It could well be that the clear road was a "deception". 

You will notice that not lather than when you hear the emergency braking, when running in front of the second car, because you have seen only the first and the third. 
But watch out - the next time you move, the picture will shift. That's a bit like playing "Memory". You have to remember what you saw a second ago.

But there is another problem when listening to the traffic: Bicycles and electocars. Harder to hear and estimate the distance ….

Well, now i am not going to drive anymore. I walk. But even that is not necessarily safe. And jobbing or running speeds are not really recommended either. 


About this text

Jutta's Story texts were originally written in 2016-2017.
end of 2018 I am officially legally blind..
And I am proud to be a member of the Malta Society of the Blind.