Medical update: really good news. As I reported earlier I'm scheduled for cataract surgery on the 17th of this month, a 30 minute outpatient procedure. But the scheduling was tentative because the cataract that the opthamologist could see in my left eye was not large enough, with any certainty, to explain all of the vision loss. Hence, she was concerned that retinal damage might be much of the issue and that cataract surgery would be of insufficient help.
I have just concluded a visit to the retina specialist to whom she referred me. He seems very competent. and he seemed very sure that my retina is barely compromised at all for someone my age and does not explain the vision loss, and therefore he is very optimistic that the cataract surgery will give me very functional, near excellent, vision for as many years as the rest of my body holds together.
This is a far more optimistic outlook than I felt I had about a month ago.