Ian’s Law


“The cost of sunglasses is inversely related to the length of time you keep them without their being lost, broken or stolen.”

Why is it that my tortoiseshell sunspecs, bought at Aldi for £1.99 five years ago, have shown such a remarkable persistence and resilience, when more expensive sunglasses vanish without trace a few months after being bought?

We may never know.

My old Aldi’s have been true stalwart sunglasses. The lens on one side fell out about a year ago, but I managed to get it back in and it stayed there until Sunday. The frame around the glass split on a long journey to one of the bush camps to see a patient. I was in an open vehicle with no windscreen and needed to wear the specs to prevent insects and dust getting into my eyes.

I thought this was the end of the road for my sunnies, but Donna came to my rescue with some glue used for cementing on nail extensions. Within a few seconds, the frame was fixed. But I put the specs on too soon and my eyebrow hair (which can be profuse) became attached and had to be trimmed away.

I have been expecting to lose or break these glasses for the past four years. So whenever I am in UK and see Aldi or Lidl sunspecs on offer, I buy a spare pair. I must have four or five back at home. My daughters told me that I have been choosing ladies’ glasses, but I don’t care. I pick them for how they fit and the UV protection factor rather than for the style. However, I draw the line at huge glasses with diamante-encrusted frames.

At the end of this mission in Zambia, I am going to leave these battered glasses with their scratched lenses and broken frames behind in Africa, where they spent most of their life.

By Dr Alfred Prunesquallor

Maverick doctor with 40 years experience, I reduced my NHS commitment in 2013. I am now enjoying being free lance, working where I am needed overseas. Now I am working in the UK helping with the current coronavirus pandemic.


  1. Would love to see you in a pair of diamanté encrusted, Dame Edna-esque sun glasses. I’m sure you’d look fabulous. Mat

  2. Ian any chance I could get high resolution copies of your photos (wide angled panoramic) of Mathare Valley slum. I grew up there and am writing a book about my experiences in Kenya. Went to school in Eastleigh and played as a child in the valley.


    will credit if I use them, more than likely.

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