What to expect at the Invisible Exhibition
Words can’t describe how excited I was to partake in such a unique experience that I arrived 20 min early. I took a cab using the Taxify app and it dropped me off right in front of the Exhibition and Trade Center. I am glad I did arrive early because finding the entrance to the exhibition wasn’t easy.
Eventually, I made it, after 10 minutes of walking around. When I walked through the door of the building I went up to the receptionist to check in and pay. I put my belongings in a locker which was required and waited for the tour to begin.
When our guide came out she introduced herself and told us she was partially blind. We started the tour by learning about different tools blind people use daily. We even got to try out the tools for ourselves.
She taught us a bit of braille and then tested us on it and needless to say, the majority of us didn’t do very well.
After spending about 20 minutes messing around with all the devices our guide briefed us on what to expect, rules and safety for the actual exhibition
The tour finally began! We slowly conga lined into the first room. It took some time to get adjusted to the darkness and let me tell you, having bad balance didn’t help!
If I bump into things when I can see, imagine how bad it was in the dark.
After several minutes of uncontrolled giggling and bumping into items we all finally got used to the darkness. Our first order of business was figuring out where we were. We touched a couch, a sink, a television, a phone, and heard cars driving and beeping in the distance. It was an apartment!
Our guide explained what it’s like living in an apartment as a blind person and the different devices they have to use like talking clocks and, voice readers, basically everything talks.
She then gave us tasks like finding a seat, finding the bathroom and answering the phone. We all struggled a lot.
After we finished exploring the apartment we left to explore the outside world. Our first task was to cross a street. We heard the sounds of cars beeping and driving past. We were supposed to end up at a grocery store on the other side.
Eventually, we all made it safe and sound. Luckily, it was just a simulation otherwise we might not have been so lucky. Our next task was to go grocery shopping! Our guide told us to find an Orange. Oranges have a unique bumpy texture that many other fruits don’t, so finding one wasn’t too difficult.
Our next room was my favorite! We got to explore nature. It was definitely the most peaceful part of the exhibition. We started by crossing a bridge where we could hear the soft flow of water and take in the faint scent of pine wafting in the air.
We ended up in a log cabin which was the smallest room we visited so we were quite cozy. There wasn't too much to explore in the cabin so we spent the least amount of time there.
We then wandered into our second to last room – an art gallery! Our guide had us go around and touch the statues to try and figure out what famous works of art they were. Since I can’t touch figurines in a real art museum, this goody two shoes enjoyed that rebel life.
After guessing what statues we were touching (Some were right, but most were wrong).
We entered our next and final room – a buffet. As we entered we heard the faint chatter of diners, enjoying their meal. We found seats where we got to chill for a bit. Our guide gave us the option of ordering a drink and a snack.
I went with a beer and chocolate bar and I have to say, I felt less guilty about eating in the dark.
After we finished our drinks and snacks our tour ended and it was time to get back to the real world. It took a few seconds to adjust to the light but before long I could see again.