I have always had a bit of a paronoya about my eyes. I shutter at the mear thought of touching them. I wear glasses and have never even considered getting contacts. The idea of intentionally putting something in my eyes is enough to give me heart palpatations. I wont even wear eye make-up, because I'm worried about getting some of it in my eye on accedent. But I have now lit my eyes on fire twice.
The first time I got fire in my eyes was January 31st, 1999. I opted to ring in the new melenium in the middle of nowhere - more spacifically at my college roommates ranch in eastern Montana. At midnight we decided to head out to one of the fields and spell out 2000 in sparklers left over from the prievious years 4th of July. The wind picked up as I circled my sparkler through the air. A spark was carried through the wind and lodged into my eye.
The ember was the size of a beebee and hurt like hell as it burt into my eyeball. I was raced back to the ranch house and my eyes were washed out in the bathtube. The next day I endured an hour drive into the nearest town so have a doctor put chemicals into my eye to make sure I hadn't burt the cornia. The ember hadn't had any negative effects on my vission and after a few days the event felt more like a humorous story than a painful memory.
Then last night, I caught my eye on fire again. This time the burning wasn't from a flaming ember, but instead from a hot chilli pepper. I chopped the peppers for last nights dinner before I started on the onions. When the onions caused me to cry, I didn't think about the lingering chilli oil on my fingers before wiping my eyes. The burning was sudden and overwellming. I screamed in pain before rushing to the bathroom and attempting to flush out my eye the way they always teach in chemestry lab.
The water only made it burn more, so my husband started reading up on the internet about how to deminish the pain from chilli's in the eye. The gave me a baking soda solution and told me to try and wash my eye with that. It stung even worse, so then my husband gave me vinigar to rinse my eye. Eventually I stopped accepting the home remedies he came up with and settled on tears as the best solution. After two hours of crying the fire had been estiguished and I was able to see again.
My eye is still a little itchy today, but like the fireworks, I don't think the chilli's had any perminate effect on my vission. Still I feel the need to give a public service announcement. Make sure you always wash your hands after cutting chilli's and never ever wipe your eyes with your fingers while cooking no mater how pungent the onions are!