A few months ago, Maddie decided she wanted to see if my glasses were made of play-dough, so she grabbed the earpiece in one hand, the lenses in the other and wrenched them apart.
And just like that, I was out a pair of glasses. Fortunately most of the time I wear contacts.
Last week I finally visited my optometrist who informed me that (a) they couldn’t be repaired; (b) the frames had been discontinued and couldn’t be ordered; and (c) I could buy replacement frames to fit my existing lenses for the low, low price of $180.
I hemmed and hawed about it, tried on frames, found some cute Vera Wang ones that didn’t fit my lenses (of course), and deliberated some more.
While I tried to make up my mind, the lady who was helping me quietly said, “you know, there is a repair guy…down off of Independence Road…you should look him up.” So I took my sad sad broken glasses, thanked her profusely, packed up the children and hot-footed it outta there.
Yesterday I visited “the guy.”
It was quite a trip… a long trip down a tree-lined street in Plaza Midwood, one of my favorite neighborhoods in Charlotte, clearing speed bumps as I went. Then the “Dead End” signs started popping up. The GPS told me to go on, so I forged ahead. Quite randomly, at the end of the neighborhood street, there is an industrial park. It looks like it’s deserted. After a little exploration, I came across a series of tiny storefronts. Each is about one room wide. “The guy” has a sign on his little window made of adhesive letters: “Dan’s Eyeglass Repair.”
I went in and found a man in his early 60’s wearing a black industrial apron with “Dan” embroidered in red on the front. He stood behind a counter in an area filled with equipment and tiny tools. He looked at the damage to my glasses, set them in a tray, and motioned to the chairs in the waiting area.
As the boys ran up and down the sidewalk outside, I sat with Maddie and talked with the older man who was also waiting. He shook his head and laughed at my situation, having four boys in a row. He said two boys were enough for him. Now he enjoys his grandchildren and sends them home when he gets tired.
After a little while, the boys got hot and sweaty and came into the air conditioning. They looked at nature magazines and Popular Mechanics while we waited.
Twenty minutes after I entered Dan’s Eyeglass Repair, I was happily walking out the door with a working pair of glasses, having spent only fifteen bucks.
Dan has a good business, from what I saw. Over the course of my brief visit, I saw four other people there.
It was worth the drive. You should visit him if you are in need of a repair.