Wednesday, October 12, 2011

My First Blind Shopping Experience at Macy's - 全盲でもデパートでお買物体験

As I entered the building, I immediately figured out where I am... by the smell of ladies' fregrances!
Me having absolutely no idea where to go, I just proceeded forward, clicking my tongue to avoid the booth. I am not interested in ladies' fragrances but men's clothing section.

Then, I hit something. Feels like a display of something... and heard some beeps that seems to be like from cash register.
I looked for Juan but he is not giving me any hint what I should do, so I am sort of panicked!

Then, I heard a lady asking me 'Are you looking for something?'
I told her I am looking for, though I can't see so I am not looking, men's clothes section, she called for someone who will take me to the area. It turns out that she is one of a person at fragrance section, watching me getting lost!

Then, we are in the right area.




Juan and me at Macy's

Then, a salesperson approached me, and started showing me some shirts.
He called himself Robert, and asked me what I am looking for.
I told him I want a short-sleeve, button-up shirt with distinctive colour and design that I can't find in Japan.

First, he is showing me some shirts at $20 to $40 range, but as we talk I came to America for learning echolocation training and I shop for shirts because my parents threw my shirts away, he asked me how many I am getting...
Then, he brought me some brand by Sean Paul, on clearance starting $9.95 to $14.95 range!
Moreover, he offered a deal that if I get more than 4, he would give a 2-4-$9.95 for $9.95 shirts!


Me trying on a yellow checked shirt

After all, I ended up getting 5 shirts in total, two green ones, two blue ones and one yellow one, all of them have distinctive design so I would stand out in Japan!

In Japan, salespersons usually do not spend time with shoppers to help choose items because they tend to run with minimal staff, so they expect a blind shopper to show up with a sighted guide or family. In addition, most blind people rely on sighted family members or sighted guide to choose clothes, so I might get biased choice. Furthermore, both salesperson and sighted guide in Japan worry too much about damaging items and displays if a blind person hits it, so they prefer not to bring blind shoppers inside shops... it's sort of discriminating!
Instead, I enjoyed shopping with a salesperson who describes the items, trying his best to offer the best bang for the bucks... something salespersons in Japan usually don't!
Oh well, I praise for America; no discrimination for blind shoppers like Japan!

I learned that a blind man can shop alone, with appropriate help!
And this is the moment I claimed the freedom, independence and responsibility through this shopping experience!



Juan Robert and me at Macy's

The photo below is what Juan insisted I should get a photo taken with...

Me shaking hands with a mannequin

1 comment:

  1. はじめまして。

    黄色とグレー?の格子柄のシャツ よくお似合いです。