The mountains of Colorado are beautiful at any time of the year, but in the fall the colors are fabulous. As we drove closer to the parking area, I began to get very excited about our camping trip. I had recently began dating Heather, and when I found out that Heather, and her best friend Michelle had planned on a camping trip in the Rocky Mountains together, I talked Michelle’s boyfriend Tom into making the trip a foursome. So, here we were, the four of us, loaded with enough food for a week in the wilderness.
We parked the car, and put our backpacks on. Tom and I each got to carry a bit more than the girls, but I suppose that that is only fair, as we are a bit stronger. I snapped some pictures of the others as they struggled with their packs, and they got a good laugh at my choice of camera. I am a professional photographer, but for this trip I had only brought along a lightweight 35mm, with a minimal number of lenses, along with 3 disposable cameras, and they were laughing at me using one of the disposables. Funny thing though - I have discovered that these throw a ways can take a fairly nice picture.
Tom and I got on each end of the cooler, and off we went into the woods and mountains. Our destination was a series of campsites, about an hour’s hike away from the car park. By the time we had reached the site, Tom and I were wondering why we had brought along as much beer as we had, as the cooler was darned heavy.
We set up the two tents at the site the rangers had assigned us, and built a small fire. The woods were under a fire protection act, and the fire was restricted to cooking purposes only, so as it got dark we cooked supper, and dampened down the fire. This spoiled a bit of the fun, as we had to set up a lantern so we could see after it got dark. We did resurrect the fire a bit later on, so that we could roast some marshmallows, but then put it out for the night.
Of course, when you drink beer, you don’t own it - you just rent it for a while, so I took a flashlight and went off to a private area to rid myself of the beer surplus. After I finished, I turned around to walk back to the campsite, and the flashlight picked up a glint of something metal off to the side of the path. I investigated, and found a pair of gold-rimmed eyeglasses. One lens was completely shattered, and the other, while broken at one corner, was still in the frame. I put the lens up to my eye, and noticed that this lens was very strong. Unless the owner of these glasses had had another pair, there was going to be a very nearsighted lady in a lot of trouble somewhere.
I took the glasses back to the campsite, and showed them to the others. Heather held the one lens up to her eye, and exclaimed that they were almost as strong as her glasses, and she was absolutely blind without hers. I hadn’t known that about Heather, and I was very excited about this. I am strongly attracted to girls that wear very strong glasses, and while I knew that Heather wore contact lenses, I hadn’t been dating her long enough to question her about her vision.
Just before going to sleep for the night, I thought I heard a voice in the distance, being carried by the wind, but it was so indistinct that I couldn’t be sure of what it said. When I woke up the next morning, the voice haunted me, and I asked the other’s if any of them had heard it. Michelle said that she thought she had heard someone saying “help me, please help me,” but she thought it was the wind playing tricks on her.
I watched Heather as she carefully washed her hands in water that she had heated on the fire. With a mirror in front of her I watched her clean her left lens with solution, and pop it into her eye. She then did the other lens, and inserted it as well. She poured the water out, and turned around to face us.
“There, now I can see again” she said.
“Why didn’t you bring glasses to wear for this trip,” I asked.
“They are too thick and strong. They make me look blind and ugly” was her reply.
I knew better than to take this any further. My previous girlfriend and I had gone for a holiday together to Florida. On the second morning, while eating her cornflakes, Jill had had a lens pop out. It landed on her spoon, and she had swallowed the spoonful of cornflakes, and her right lens before she even realized that she had lost it. Of course she didn’t have a spare lens, so she was forced to wear her glasses for the rest of the week. Jill was considered a high myope, but to me she was on the low end, with a prescription of only -7.50 or -8.00D. When I saw her wearing glasses I remarked on how nice she looked, and that I really liked girls that wore glasses. I suppose I came on a bit too strong, as shortly after our return, she replaced her contact, and I didn’t see her in glasses again. When I started to pressure her to wear her glasses for me, she began to find other things that she had to do when I called to ask her out. So, this attraction to glasses was something I was going to keep to myself from now on.
I kept thinking about the voice Michelle and I had heard on the wind the previous evening. I fantasized about a beautiful young lady, lost, and helpless in the mountains without her glasses. Finally I could take it no longer. I got my cell phone out of my pack, and called the ranger station. After explaining to the ranger on duty that I had found a broken pair of strong glasses, and that we might have heard a voice in the night, the ranger asked me for my number, and told me he would check it out, and call me back.
About an hour later my phone rang. The ranger had discovered that indeed there was someone missing. A schoolteacher from Illinois named Kim Jones had been reported missing by her boyfriend just last night. In her description was a notation that she wore strong glasses, and that she might have lost or broken them. The area that they had been camping in was the same area that we were in, and the ranger asked me if we would assist in the search. Of course I agreed.
I explained to the others that we had been recruited to find a missing person. The ranger had advised me that they would be over the area in a helicopter very shortly, and that they would attempt to spot the missing schoolteacher from the air. However, the area was so dense that they would be unable to land. So, he asked me to keep my phone turned on, and they would call me to direct me to the area if they should find her.
The chopper appeared over us, and began flying what I assumed was a grid pattern. This went on for a couple of hours, and as the chopper got further and further away from us, I began to fear that they would never find Ms. Kim Jones. Just then my phone rang. The pilot was on the line, and he advised me that they had found someone. He told me that they were going to drop a locator balloon, and asked us if we could head for the balloon.
I took a compass reading, and we started off. It wasn’t easy going, but after 2 hours we reached a bit of a clearing. There, directly below the balloon, lay a person on the ground. We called out to her, and she stirred and sat up.
“Are you all right,” I asked.
“I’ve sprained my ankle, and I lost my glasses, so I can’t see anything,” she replied.
As we drew closer I could see that she was a very pretty lady. Her hair, long, and blond, was tied back in a ponytail. I looked at her eyes as I got closer, and realized that she was indeed very nearsighted. A person that is a low myope will attempt to focus by squinting their eyes, but a very high myope doesn’t even bother to do this, as they know that it won’t make any difference to what they see.
We took turns helping her hobble back to our campsite. Locating and rescuing Kim had pretty well killed the whole day, and by the time we reached the site, darkness had set in. I had been asked to phone the rangers with an update when I reached our camp, so I did. Since Kim’s injuries were minor, and since we had plenty of food, the rangers asked her if she minded waiting until morning for them to pick her up. She replied that she was fine, and morning was all right with her.
I showed Kim her broken glasses, and as she put them on the remaining lens slipped out and broke on the rocks. She had been elated with the thought that she would be able to see again, and this was a crushing disappointment to her.
I thought about it for a while. I had finished the film in the first disposable the day before, and it was with our carry out garbage. I retrieved it, and tore it apart. I got the small viewfinder lens out, and gave it to Kim. She put it up to her eye, and told me that she could almost see with it. So, I took the partially finished film out of the other camera, and ripped it apart as well. Using a piece of copper wire I had used to wire the tent together, I fashioned a holder for the lenses. With only a minimal amount of wire, I formed it around each small lens, leaving the wire loose enough to make 4 points, which I did by twisting the wire with a pair of pliers I had brought. I then trimmed the 4 points so that each lens was fairly near the center of each of Kim’s eyes, and using these 4 points as the holder, I forced this contraption into the frame of her broken glasses. I handed Kim the finished contraption, she put them on, and was delighted to have some vision again. Everyone else laughed at my ingenuity, and they all started calling me Mac’Giver (after a television show from the early 80’s).
Before we retired for the evening, in conversation we discovered that Kim had very sensitive eyes, and was unable to tolerate contact lenses. It turned out that her prescription was actually stronger than Heather’s, and that she wore hi index glass lenses so that her lenses were not as thick and ugly looking as they might have been if they had been made in regular plastic. We also discovered that she had had a fight with her boyfriend, and that the reason that she had lost, and broken her glasses was that he had hit her. He then left her there, knowing that she was blind, and helpless without her glasses. She had tried to walk in the direction that she thought that the car park was, but had gotten totally lost, and had eventually sprained her ankle, not far from where we found her. The sight of her, as blind as she was, trying to find her way back to civilization did not make us feel very charitable towards her ex boyfriend.
The next morning the rangers showed up to take Kim back to somewhere that she could get her ankle looked at, and to her luggage that her ex boyfriend was waiting with at the ranger station so she could get her spare glasses. The four of us continued our holiday, and had a great time. The Rockies are just such a fabulous place to be.
Heather and I continued to date, and even lived together for a while, but she wouldn’t think about getting herself a pair of glasses to wear at home in the evening. Then, she went and spent the money for laser surgery, so I decided that it was time for me to move on.
I have since gotten married to a wonderful, extremely nearsighted lady, who does not wear contact lenses and who has totally accepted my appreciation of ladies wearing thick glasses. Every once in a while for old times sake she puts on a very special pair of glasses for me to enjoy during our times of lovemaking. Since her vision has deteriorated even more over the past few years, she can no longer see very well with them, but the wire still works to hold the lenses in place.
With special thanks to Andy for the story idea, and to A.J. my proofreader