Onions (or Why My Eyewear Hates Me)

onionYesterday was chutney making day in our house. For some reason, I’d also decided it should be a rest day for my eyes and wore my glasses rather than my contact lenses, as my optician begs me to do as much as possible.

About half way through chopping half a kilo of strong onions, I realised that this had been a mistake. A big one. My contact lenses usually protect my eyes from the effect of onions; so much so that I always forget about it when I cut onions and I’m not wearing them. I struggled on and finished chopping the onions, with tears streaming down my face. I finished getting all the components of the chutney into the slow cooker and went to remedy the eye situation. It had become apparent that the onions were particularly strong, and everyone was suffering, no matter where in the house they were. I decided to forego the rest day and ditch the glasses.

Having washed my hands approximately 273 times, I thought I would be safe in putting in my lenses. I was wrong. It seems that nothing can shift onion juice and pickling vinegar. In a cruel twist of fate, this didn’t become obvious until both lenses were in my eyes and then…. Oh sweet Goddess, it burned. It burned so much that I couldn’t open my eyes, which meant that it continued to burn. On and on and on. And on.

When I finally managed to wrench my eyes open and remove my lenses, I looked like someone who has been on a 3 day bender. To add salt to the wound (and at this point, I’m not sure I would have noticed), the onions and vinegar were still really strong in the air, and I realised I would have to continue with my plan. Much hand and lens washing later, I faffed about trying to put my lenses in with whichever finger was least likely to have come into contact with the toxic onions. My little fingers are not made for contact lens popping in, but I succeeded. Eventually.

Next week, I think I’ll try chopping chillies and see how that goes ….

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