The upshot of part one of my dental tales is that I decided not to go see the dentist in Saint-Aignan again. Asking around, we got a lot of negative information about her. Two of our neighbors told Walt that he should find a different dentist at any cost and not return to the one who had cleaned his teeth the last time.
One day, the woman who cuts my hair (now that Madame Barbier is no longer in the business) told me, at length and quite animatedly, a horror story about an experience she had had with that dentist, resulting in a trip to the emergency room at the hospital in Blois. She also said she had made many calls all around the region trying to find a decent dentist who was willing to take new patients, but with no luck. The situation was not looking good.
The one day back in June I happened to run into one of our neighbors at the supermarket. For some reason, she told me she had an appointment to see a dentist that day, because she had broken a tooth. She said the appointment was scheduled for 8: 30 p.m. and asked me if I had ever heard of a dentist keeping such hours.
I said no, I hadn't ever heard of an evening dental appointment, but that I needed to find a dentist myself — not because of any urgent problem but because I needed to be on a good dentist's patient roster. I just needed and exam and a cleaning to start with. (The Saint-Aignan dentist's x-ray all those months ago had showed no sign of a problem with my tingling tooth, and the tingling was only intermittent.)
The neighbor said she would ask her dentist if he would be willing take me on as a patient. I said thanks, and a couple of days later the neighbor stopped by the house and told me I was all set up with an 11:30 a.m. appointment on July 23. She said the man, whose practice is in a little town 12 miles west of here, really was an excellent dentist — she had been going to him for years.
Weeks later, when I showed up for my dental visit, I found no receptionist but just a small waiting room, where a man about my age was sitting. After the perfunctory bonjour, I took a seat and starting reading a magazine. I hoped I was in the right place.
To be continued...