'I'm always looking for the Hows and the Whys and the Whats,' said Muskrat, 'That is why I speak as I do. You've heard of Muskrat's Much-in-Little, of course?'
'No,' said the child. 'What is it?'
- The Mouse and his Child. Russell Hoban.

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Wednesday, 9 June 2010

My Eye.



Under about ten years old, I was an extremely shy and retiring sort of person. I mean, really. You have no idea. When I was ten, my English-born parents had saved up enough for them and my sister and I to take a trip to England - big ships each way - and we travelled around in a campervan, visiting relatives for six months. The trip was wonderful, and just what I needed to give me a bit of confidence, which continued to develop until now I am the woman you see before you.

But even in my Very Shy years, I was always rather vain about my eyes. I remember looking at myself in the mirror for the first time (as one does) and thinking the colours were wonderful. Sort of a greeny-gold with burnt sienna specks. (I knew about burnt sienna from my paint-box). I learnt in due course that other people had interesting eye colours too. Gazing into men's eyes has always been an interest of mine.

However when it came time to get my first passport, and I had to write down the colour of my eyes, I was surprised to find that you couldn't describe your eyes in detail. There was a very limited choice, and I felt quite cheated that mine were just put into the category 'hazel'. What kind of a one-size-fits-all type of thing is that? Hrumph! You could be green, blue, brown or hazel. And worse still, 'hazel' wasn't a particular colour, it just meant 'a mixture of colours'. So I was lumped in with 'blue with specks of brown', 'greyish-blue', and all the other flotsam and jetsam. Sigh.

It's so very hard to be humble when you have beautiful eyes.

13 comments:

  1. I have a similiar eye colour and I always write green. I mean I have never heard of the colour hazel.(other than for eyes) and hazel always reminded me of an elderly housekeeper....

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  2. Emily Bronte called eyes "the windows of the soul". Don't worry, my eyes are hazel too. We hazels should unite and fight back against the oppressive blue and brown eyed despots. Freedom for The Hazels!

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  3. Hmmm, well, perhaps hazel should be re-named 'creative' eye- colour.

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  4. Elizabeth11.6.10

    They certainly are very beautiful eyes, Katherine. Photographing them in such close-up really shows the spectacular colours and the pattern reminds me of a dandelion clock.
    My eyes are almost black and have very little variation of colour, but they are very dramatic in certain lights. x

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  5. My eyes look the same (at least they did last time I looked at them!). But I call them green. I always think of hazel as, well, kinda dull murky brown. Green is so much more...you know...exotic.

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  6. This may be my favorite of your musings. Much-to-do-about-nothing, yet charming and insightful. Rambling but great segues. I'm more jealous of the 10-year-old traveling around England than the pretty eyes.

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  7. Robert. I have never seen an eye-colour that it didn't find beautiful, and fascinating in its detail. The whole post was tongue-in-cheek, I hope you understand. Well, most of it. Well, certainly the bit about other eye colours being flotsam and jetsam.

    Susan, I write green now too. And I know exactly what you mean about the house-keeper.

    Elizabeth, I suspect that, from my (an artist's) point of view, yours may be likened to those wonderful deep, rich, renaissance glazes that intrigue and invite the viewer in!

    Big Mama Frog - Welcome to TLVD! And I agree whole-heartedly. Exotic. That's what I want to be known as, too!

    Judy, thank you. I also find myself drawn to the purely personal posts of other's... Much more interesting than someone rabbitting on about some fruit they ate :-)
    Have you read Robert's Billy Ray Barnwell here?

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  8. My eyes and the eyes of two of my three children are green, and may I just say to Katherine and those of you have hazel-colo(u)red eyes:

    Hazel is nothing like green.

    Sorry to burst your bubble(s). Most hazels are closer to brown or gold, in my opinion.

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  9. Aw, Alright then. Hazel it is.

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  10. Thanks for the plug (he said sheepishly). But you didn't include <a href="http://billyraybarnwellhere.blogspot.com>a link</a>...

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  11. I too have hazel eyes and, coincidentally, Catriona raised the subject last evening (before I read this blog) and, not having ever heard of 'hazel' as an eye colour she decided mine were green. I've always been very poud to have had hazel eyes and was a tad put out that anyone should think they were green.

    And, yes, I think eyes are very important when getting to know someone.

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