Friday, May 6, 2016

Sense the Darkness at A Dialogue in the Dark

A while back I had heard that there are restaurants where you dine in a pitch black room. Since you can’t see what you are eating, your other senses get enhanced and the flavors hit you in full effect. You can combine it with a date with someone you’ve never seen before to make sure that you do not judge that person based on their looks and instead you will get a feeling if you like the date or not based on your personalities.
Even though I’ve never tried one of those restaurants (and never even been on a blind date), I heard of a museum with more or less the same concept. “Dialogue in the Dark” lets the visitors experience how around 1.5 hours in the life of a completely blind person is. After leaving your valuables in a locker, you are ushered into an elevator and then a room with dim lights where you get instructions and a white cane to use to navigate the museum. The next room is where the whole experience starts.
 In total darkness, you are greeted by a new, smooth voice of a guide who will take you around the museum. After getting acquainted with the voices and smells (on this hot April day!) of the other visitors, you’ll start following the wall until the ground and the wall change shapes. During the trip, you will cross unstable bridges, listen to birds chirping in the park, being overwhelmed by boat motor and marketplace sounds, identify groceries with only your hands and sense of smell, and finally visit a café to relax after an intense journey.
The experience really puts into perspective how we take our sight for granted and you begin to understand how it is to live and function in society as a blind person. Because only seeing how a blind person walks and acts on the street is nowhere close to the understanding that “Dialogue in the Dark” provides. 

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