Tuesday, November 29, 2011

At the Dentist with Frank Sinatra
It was 8:45am when I stepped into the dentist office in Los Algodones,Mex. My appointment was for 9am. I was told that Dottore hadn't arrived yet so I placed myself in a chair with a view out the window. It seemed that everybody in town was going about their usual business. Girls went by, old buggers went the other direction. The cars going by were of all ages. some nice and new, others looked rather beaten up. A few guys were working on a roof a few houses down the street. A Military Humvee was passing with a grim looking soldier sitting on the truck bed. No police though.

From the reception desk came blaring Mexican music. The song played on an endless loop. Soon I would be able to sing it myself. After xxxxx times hearing that same tune the receptionist changed to another. I learned the second Mexican song as well. Then, at about 9:30 the Dottore came through the door. After another 10 minutes I was called into torture chamber.

After the preliminary procedure encompassing picture- taking, and explaining what to do and why, I gave my oral consent to go ahead. What I thought would be a single crown and maybe a root canal, turned out to a crown, two root canals and a bridge between two molars. Cavities were involved as well.

If there was already music out at the reception desk, here in the inner chamber was even more of it. Surprisingly not Mexican but rooted deep in the American great song era with Frank Sinatra and friends. Not enough with that, but the music was so enticing that both Dottore and that beautiful Mexican assistant were just picking up the tune and doing a nice duett. I was stetched out into the horisontal position, I had some rubber and stretch apparatus in my mouth, otherwise I would have loved to join the two. Matter of fact I was feeling a tad dumb being so absolutely defenseless without any ability to say neither OUCH nor STOP.

I have been in dentist chairs in other places and the most time I have spent during a single visit was 1 1/2hrs. And that was BAD. But it was nothing compared to today's session. Yep, I spent three (3) hours in that unfortunate position. Dottore asked me whether I wanted a break, but I figured that the suffering would just have been pro-longed, and that, I thought, was not desirable either. So I stood out with it and hoped for survival.

When all was over - no it wasn't yet. Dottore was mixing some concoction in a little bowl and it turned to a rubbery jelly. He put that stuff on a little metal form (you may imagine a baking form for X-mas cookies) and then he shoved that whole thingy in my mouth and pressed it down onto my gum. Holding it there seemed to take some strength. My mouth was aching and I must have slowly shut it, cause all-of-a-sudden Dottore withdrew one of his hands telling me that I should not bite into his finger. He started wailing about that just about everybody was biting into his fingers and why was that? Well, I kinda knew the reason, but didn't say nothing. I couldn't, as I had the mouth full of that rubber stuff. When he was done with the lower portion and had broken it free, I looked at it and it had changed color from strawberry red to a nasty looking yellow. He then took another rubber imprint from the upper mouth as well. Geez...

4 hrs after arriving in the morning I walked the street, numbed in parts of my mouth, and eager to leave this dentist town and get through the border back into the good old U.S.A. 
I have three more of those nice dates with Dottore to look forward to.


  1. oh wow you sure had a rough day...I had to chuckle when I saw the sign, dental and optical...get your choppers and your lookers taken care of in one shot...I can't resist but you could have had a twofer if necessary (no pun intended)...hope you feel better tomorrow! You sure had a significant amount of work done..that would have cost a fortune here at home...I'm assuming it wasn't too bad there where as you have 3 more dates with him..

  2. Ja Elaine, it IS cheaper than in Canada or the U.S. and it actually "pays" for the whole trip down here. And it's a given that I would have had to go to a dentist at home. Algodones has 450 (that's right: fourhundredfifty) dental offices and surly the same number of optometrists. The rest is booze, pharmacy and souvenirs. You gotto see it to believe it.

  3. I've had dental work done in Algodones and have had no problems--how long did it take you to wait in that line to cross back??? The longest we ever waited was 3 hours!

  4. Janna and Mike: The picture of the line is a stock pic. I had to wait maybe 5 minutes. The dottore we use is actually a good one. He did work on Bea 2 years ago and there are no problems.


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