I am the only person I know who has three separate dental specialists attending to what I regard as standard dental care: the surgeon, the endodontist and the regular guy who does everything else. If I was in phase one of dental care when I first came to America as a little kid, I am now in the senior phase of picking up where my childhood tooth doctor left off.
In addition to accumulating a drawerful of dentist stories, I am accumulating unfilled prescriptions for painkillers. I believe in a glass of rosé wine as a good cure-all.
Today’s endodontist asked what I do for a living (they all ask that; interesting, isn’t it? how much can we milk her for…) and he removed all instruments so that I could give a clear and unambiguous answer. When I told him of my affiliation with the law school, he relaxed. He then listed various colleagues of mine and assured me that they were his friends. I wasn’t certain if they were friends in the same way that I was now his “friend” or if they were really truly buddies, but it felt intrusive to ask and so I just grunted admiration for the wide circumference of his social circle.
After a long spell on his chair I decided a treat was in order and so I hurried to La Baguette to pick up bread and a chocolate croissant.
Both the bakery and the café part were absolutely hopping and that, along with their free samples of the new Baujolais (2008 est arrivée!) made my heart sing.
I listened to the French behind the counter, chatted with Madame as to the true meaning of la poissonerie and all worries receded.
It’s good to have happy spots to retreat to when the weather stays cold and your only scheduled meeting for the day is with a dentist.