An interesting consequence of wearing an eye-patch is that it polarizes people you pass.
Either they look straight at you with an expression of frank, alarm-tinged curiosity or avert their gaze with an exaggeratedly set jaw to watch their feet quicken pace.
This second group out-number the first ten to one, I reckon. The first is largely comprised of children who turn mouths towards their responsible adult but keep eyes fixed on the patch and wail “Muuuuuuum, hasn’t that lady got an eye; has she got a hole there?” or some such sensible-if-equally-unanswerable question.
But occasionally you pass a fellow pirate and the grin of wicked, empathic comprehension that passes between you is simply joyous.
Such was the case earlier. Swaying along the canal, waterways a-waterwayin’, moor hens hooting, fishermen muttering over tangled lines, there came chugging up-stream a narrow boat whose piratical cap’n caught one blink of me and grinned an ear to ear grin which might have split a gizzard at fifty paces. It was clear he was a pirate: on the water, breeze wafting a thin pony-tail, hand on the tiller and although he wasn’t sporting a patch, that I was, was meaningful to him.
There was in that suspended TARDIS of connection more joy-in-living than in all of Kate Aldridge’s ambitions [Archer’s reference, sorry] of teleological nirvana. Rapture.
I strongly encourage all who should don a patch to do so and revel in what transpires. [The wooden leg thing’d take faithfulness a step too far: but a parrot? Kinda appeals.]