I (Annie) traveled from Tucson to Yuma for a quick overnight trip to have a filling replaced in Los Algodones. Or so I thought. Four days later, I was headed back home with 2 new crowns and a filling.
I chose Sani-Dental based on online reviews. They do a huge amount of business but are very organized and efficient. I spent parts of three days there and was treated well. I feel like I received quality care and man, you just can't beat the prices. Full x-rays, two crowns and a filling all for $360, and the work is guaranteed for 2 years. For perspective, a single crown back in NY after my insurance covered its part was over $400 out of pocket. Insanity.
My dentist, Esteban, was very nice but didn't speak much English so his assistant translated for him. Through her, he told me that if my hair were still black that I'd look seventeen. Mind you, this was when I was laying back in the dentist chair so that all of my wrinkles were smoothed out. Lord help us all if I were leaning forward facing down. He'd be all, "Grandma! You still have your teeth?"
Let me tell you about Antonio, my street vendor boyfriend. My guess is that he does well because he's an excellent read of his clientele, and a real sweetheart to boot. He recognized quickly that I was not a woman who likes a lot of jewelry myself but that I might have someone waiting back home who's a fan. He helped me find some most excellent presents for Roxanne, then he hugged me. Twice.
The next day he saw me, he picked out all of his inventory that was similar to what I bought the first day. As we haggled, I told him I was going to give him free advertising on the blog and couldn't he give me a break and he replied that he was giving me a good deal on the merchandise and couldn't I give him a tip. Sigh, our first fight.
If you're in Los Algodones and looking for some jewelry, stop in to see my guy Antonio at the corner of 2nd and "B" streets. He really is a very sweet man plus he gives great hugs.
|Me amigo, Antonio|
Monday afternoon, I stood in line for two hours waiting to get back across the border. Behind me were three teenaged girls. Man, talk about getting attention, the jewelry vendors were all over them. But the best was when one of the vendors who makes cloth bracelets with your name sewn in offered a free bracelet to one of the girls … in exchange for a kiss. I'm all, "I'll take that offer!"
Unrelated: Some Mexican men can run really fast. Also unrelated: some Mexican men need to talk to the dentist who thinks middle aged women look seventeen.
A woman waiting in the border line near me had bought one of those huge plaster tortoises and lugged it from resting place to resting place as the line moved forward. For 2 hours she lugged it through the line. Finally, we'd made it through the turnstiles and were about to enter the building to show our passports when CRASH! Tortoise bits all over. The crowd gave a collective gasp. Her husband asked what happened. "I dropped my turtle!" He replied, "I didn't like the damned thing anyway."
That was Mexico but the highlight of the trip was absolutely meeting up with Su! We used to belong to the same RVing email list and I'm so glad I wrote to tell her I was in Yuma. She is an absolute gem and we had a blast. I can't tell you unless you've experienced it for yourself how wonderful it is to meet up with a kindred spirit and know you've got a lifelong friend.
|The most awesome Su|
Su took me sightseeing just across the border into California where there's a little known section of desert devoted to memorials. People use the area rocks to write out names and dates and stuff. It's really a huge area, I can't remember if Su said it was 2 or 5 miles long but these rock memorials are just all over out there and some are decades old. It's really a very cool and touching place.
|One of many rock memorials|