Blogs » J.Q. Tomanek of Victoria » Check those shades


Over the weekend, while in Austin, we were walking back to the truck and I spotted some sunglasses hanging on a brace. Of course, my first inclination was the old childhood axiom, “Finder’s keepers.” Of course, I remember being taught by my parents that this was hogwash. But there they were, staring at me. My sunglasses are a couple of years old. I bought my first pair since high school about two years ago. I was a four eyed fellow since sixth grade.

I had problems with contacts, my eyes dried out too easily. I didn’t have a problem with glasses, but looked forward to the day I could afford Lasik. This procedure was accomplished a few years ago by Dr. Boozalis at the Victoria Eye Center. I was thoroughly impressed with the whole process. In fact, in graduate business school, I had to write a paper on healthcare service and this experience had become my example of what healthcare should aim for. Customer service, patient information, common courtesy and kindness to alleviate fears, and human interaction all mixed with visits to assure the quality of the care and procedure was exemplary. My eye sight went from horrible to 15/20 vision within a very short time frame, like hours or a day. Pain was pretty much non-existent and the minor difficulty was wearing the protective eye covers for awhile and sensitivity to light immediately after the surgery.

I was very sad to read in the Advocate a few months ago of a car accident that took the life of two of the Victoria Eye Center’s employees. One was a doctor, Dr. Wilson, who I visited for my pre-testing and post-surgery care. I was always impressed with his professionalism and customer consideration. The other passenger, Ms. Martha Salazar, I believe was the person that I originally met with that regarding the surgery. She also did a wonderful job of reassuring me of the procedure and answering the many questions I had.

Back to the shades. It is crazy how something so simple like seeing abandoned or lost and found sunglasses can recall a memory that brings so much gratitude; gratitude for the gift of being able to see with correctives and for how precious life is.

So there my wife and I were. I leaned over and pointed into the direction of the shades. “Hey Babe, look at those sunglasses.” In my mind, I am thinking “Hey free glasses!” They were obviously dropped in the parking garage and someone else hung them on a brace. My wife considers my words, and replies, “They are probably being videotaped to see if someone will take them.” I left them there, grateful for the experience to be tested in virtue and grateful for hidden camera shows, whether or not they were actually being recorded, for helping cure me of my selfish desires.

I don’t know if the owner of the shades ever found them. If he did, I am sure he was grateful for a stranger to place them in an area in which they could be easily found. There is another similar story here. It is a good reminder that there are plenty of people that are not always out for themselves and even when nobody may be looking, still do the right thing. I was encouraged not to take them because I feared I would show up on some hidden camera show, where this is not the perfect motive, I see the behavior of others that do it without even thinking of themselves at all and am truly impressed with their character.