Saturday, May 12, 2012

Where Paul Theroux Goes. . .so do we!

Paul Theroux, the prolific writer of travelogues and novels, is a favorite of ours. Through his books, we’ve followed him around the Mediterranean, India, England and Africa  . . . as he has travled on trains, ferries, and even on foot.

He inspires us to stretch ourselves until our comfort zones tingle . . .

It was after she strapped the mask over her mouth and eased on a pair of rubber gloves, that I started to feel nervous; about the time the reclining chair began elevating my feet higher than my head. 

“Paul Theroux did it, so can I,” I told myself.  But when she had me open my mouth and the instrument she held  began whirring, I thought, “Do I really need to do what Paul Theroux does?”

RivieraNayarit2012 054Our first stop in  Bucerias, Mexico was to have our teeth cleaned thanks to an article of his published in many U.S. newspapers that told of his walking into Nogales, Mexico. While its focus was on border crossings, among his experiences was returning with cleaner, whiter teeth.

Each of our cleanings took about an hour and included an exam by the dentist.  The total cost for both was $91US.  When compared to the cost of having it done at home, the savings had nearly paid the cost of one of our airline tickets.

We are not advocating an exodus to Mexico for dental work. We tried it and were so comfortable with our experience that a future cleaning might prompt our next visit south of the border.

While the article sparked the idea, we went to this dentist because he came recommended by gringo friends who’ve gone to him for years.  His web site explains his qualifications, has photos of his office that we reviewed prior to our trip.  (The waiting room was never empty and every patient was an American on the afternoon of our visit.)

There are hundreds of web sites citing both pros and cons of having dental work done in Mexico.  We didn’t research any of them prior to our trip simply because if Paul Theroux could do it, so could we.

What travel experiences have made your comfort zone stretch until it tingled?


  1. Well, is that called "dental tourism", then! It's a similar position here, too, so if you get here to Santiago some day, you could have a checkup, etc! Glad you're all white and gleaming!!!

  2. Yes, I guess we did fall into that category for at least two hours of our trip. I'll put Santiago on the bucket list under "Dentists" ;-)

  3. Because most medical tourists are more cautious than is the professionally impulsive Mr Theroux, our blog put together some advice on selecting a dentist.

    Our focus is on northern Baja California but the advice can be applied generally. For example, our watchdog against malpractice, the Comisión de Arbitraje Médico del Estado de Baja California, is operated by the state government but similar organizations can be found in the other states of Mexico as well as at our federal level. You can check a medical practitioner's credentials by contacting the appropriate C.A.M.E. -- the one here in Baja California will even respond in English by e-mail.

    1. Thanks much for your most informative comment. I took a look at your blog and I love the idea of a cooperative approach to a blog to promote an area.


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