Monday, January 28, 2019

The Limits of Nostalgia

What strange creatures we are! Today I went to a dentist appointment. Same dentist I’ve had since 1977, but a new location from the one I’ve gone to since 1989. And I felt nostalgic for the old place!

You have to understand that I like Bob, my dentist, and taught three of his kids. His wife Linda is my dental hygienist and for the first five minutes of every appointment, I enjoy chatting and catching up. But after that comes the pain. Sometimes the physical pain, certainly the financial pain and generally the emotional pain of paying back a bad inheritance from my parents. For though I have dutifully dental flossed since 1972 and eat a generally healthy diet, bad teeth have been my personal cross to bear. A trip through my mouth is an obstacle course of bridges and crowns and root canals and none of it was exactly my fault. 

So there should not be a single pleasant association with entering their building, walking down the long hallway, entering the inviting waiting room and then sitting in the chair looking out at a lovely view of Twin Peaks, sometimes with Linda’s dog nestled on my lap. And yes, sometimes the nitrous oxide during vigorous cleaning takes me back to the 60’s, so by no means is it all unpleasant. But generally, this home away from home was not something worth being nostalgic about.

And yet I was. The new office is a block down, Linda’s space had no window, Bob’s looked on the wall of another house and it just was weird to be with them there. I missed the old place!

But hey, that’s me. I was also unhappy when the computer fellow at school updated my operating system and some things looked just different enough that I noticed. I always survive and get through it and move on, but not casually so. 

So there you have it. Nostalgic for my old dentist office. Go figure.

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