You Meet the Nicest People Going to the Dentist in Mexico
About nine years ago, I started going to Los Algodones, Baja, Mexico, for dental work. I knew I needed crowns, so I asked my Palm Springs Neighborhood Group on Facebook what place they would recommend.
When seven people recommended Sani Dental, I took the leap and made a reservation. A friend also needed to get work done, so she agreed to take this three-hour road trip with me. See my blog What do you Expect on Dental Adventure to Mexico.
Sani Dental has two hotels connected with their organization. I have always stayed at the hotel mentioned in my blog but decided I wanted to make this trip an adventure, so I chose to go to the Hacienda Los Algodones, a four-block walk from the dental office.
Fast forward to this past week. I decided to go by myself for I thought I might need a crown, which would require me to stay two nights, and friends couldn’t get away.
I arrived a half-hour ahead of time (Los Algodones is Arizona time). The dental office happily stored my suitcase, and I was off to the routine procedures. It turns out; I just needed a deep cleaning of a molar because of a slight nagging ache and a small filling.
Previously, I learned that it is best to have a good book with you, for there are often long waiting times between seeing specialized doctors. However, I was done and could still head home if I wanted this time. Instead, a sense of disappointment filled my consciousness, and I didn’t want to go home yet. I love this town, its people and admittedly the food.
I reclaimed my suitcase and sat down in the newly remodeled waiting room to check messages. Instead struck up a conversation with a couple waiting to start the process. They were lovely, and I found out they were staying at the same hotel I would be if I stayed. They had flown in from North Dakota and were first-time visitors, wanting to be assured they had made the right decision to come here.
I enjoyed our conversation. It was then I decided I was going to stay. Well, I did want some of the coconut shrimp from my favorite restaurant and Chile Rellenos.
Lunch in Los Algodones
I was not going to leave without having coconut shrimp at my favorite restaurant Mi Casa es Su Casa. I walked in and smiled as I was greeted by the same staff that has been there for years. Stephanie escorted me to the outdoor balcony.
A young woman was sitting there working on her computer. I greeted her, and we were deep into discussions before we knew it. She and her boyfriend were from Phoenix; he was having work done at Sani Dental while she worked on her website promoting her organic deodorant.
Her boyfriend, who recently arrived from Germany, joined us about an hour later. After his girlfriend introduced me, he said, I need to share something with you. I sat in the dental chair, looked up at the wall. There were the credentials of the dentist who would be working on me. His credentials were from the best dental school in Germany. The next thing we knew, we pulled out photos and showed each other places from our hometowns. And now, I have no pain anymore on top of all of that.
They were a lovely couple and great fun to meet. However, I want to point out the dentists at Sani Dental are credentialed from some of the best institutions in the world, many of them in the USA. In addition, Sani Dental is part of the American Dental Association.
Checking into my Hotel
The clinic runs a shuttle between the two offices and the two hotels. So, the shuttled was called, and I was indeed on a new adventure. The turn into the hotel was down a dirt road, with The Wall looming in the distance. We turned the corner, and I broke into a smile--lying before me was a cheerful yellow hotel, with a courtyard complete with a tall three-tiered Mexican fountain.
Check-in was smooth, and I was led up the stairs inlaid with tiny elongated gray stones to my second-floor room. My room was immaculate, and the bathroom had a large corner shower. I was no longer questioning my decision to stay.
Drinks in the Courtyard
I unpacked a bit. Then I peered through my window and saw the people enjoying animated conversations in the courtyard. I grabbed my sweater just in case the evening turned cooler and headed down the stairs.
Sitting together were three women drinking wine. I asked them where they got the wine, and they pointed me in the direction of the onsite restaurant. Since I was in Mexico, I ordered a margarita delivered to my table.
The couple I had met in the dental office arrived, and I invited them to join me. The conversation went from dental work to a discussion about racism in the United States to the joys and attractions in the area.
Before we knew it, we were talking to the women at the adjacent table--two sisters supporting their sister having implants. One of the sisters was from Goodyear, Arizona, Kansas City, Missouri, and San Felipe, Mexico.
Then I noticed one woman had the shirt on with a heart and the initials KC, my initials. I asked what it stood for—she replied Kansas City. Then I told her they were my initials. That was the end of that conversation, and we moved on to other topics.
I smiled as I went up to my room and was surprised there were English-speaking programs on TV. I settled in but opted to turn the TV off and read my engrossing novel on my Kindle.
A Fresh New Day
I had decided I would leave that morning but would detour to Yuma six miles away to get the lay of the land. Hopefully, next trip, I could stay and explore their attractions.
As I went down the stairs, I noticed two women I met the night before having breakfast. One of them called me over. She said, Kathy, I would like you to have this. It was the t-shirt she had worn the night before with my KC initials. I just stood there in absolute amazement and was thrilled to have it.
When I started writing this blog, I said, you meet the nicest people in Los Algodones. Now I know they will even give you the shirt off their back. In addition, I have been invited to San Felipe, Mexico. Stay tuned, for I intend to visit this community near to the US border in the future.
Kathy Condon is a freelance journalist and travel writer. She is the Founder of the Palm Springs Insider Guide. Her book It Doesn't Hurt to Ask: It's All About Communication was named Best Book Finalist By USA Book News Kathy@kathycondon.net 760-902-3094 www.PalmSpringInsiderGuide.com