The gas burner on the fridge has been giving us problems for the past week. It was getting worse, and yesterday I took it apart yet again when it got to the point that it wouldn't effectively keep the contents cold.
Yesterday morning, we left Sherman with lots of time to spare to get to Ruth's 10:00am root canal appointment. Once again into central Mazatlan. We've been there about five times now, which is amazing since we never planned to go there at all originally!
We got to the dentist office of Dr. Luis Gerardo Beltran Valdez (669-982-7928) at about 9:20am and he was sitting reading the newspaper. He got up and greeted us right away, and got Ruth into the chair for an inspection. He's a root canal specialist. Sure enough, Ruth needed a root canal. He took three different x-rays and explained what he was going to do, and that it would take between one and one and a half hours. If everything went smoothly, his part of the job would be done. If not, she might have to return the next day.
And everything went smoothly! The job took about an hour.
We hadn't asked in advance what the cost was. We figured that it wasn't something that we were going to shop around for, and given that Mazatlan has so many dentists we figured there must be pretty standardized pricing.
We went to pay the bill, and it was 2,500 pesos ($205 CDN, $180 USD). A little more than we thought it would be, but a whole lot cheaper than it would have been if we had to pay a dental crook in Canada or the United States. Looking online after the fact, I saw some Mazatlan dentists advertising prices around 3,200 pesos for a root canal.
A lot of gringos get dental work done in Mazatlan, so the prices are on par with what many of the border dentists charge. Had we been back at Hacienda Contreras near Valle de Juarez, it would have been cheaper. Oh well.
Dr. Valdez speaks good enough English, he was efficient, and the price was fair. And most importantly, Ruth says she has no pain this morning!
The job is not done yet though. Ruth has another appointment this morning to get a crown installed at a different dentist. I'm guessing that will be another 3,000 pesos ($250) or so...we'll see.
Back at Sherman, I once again tried to fix the fridge problem. There appears to be enough gas pressure. The flame lights right away. But within 5 seconds to 30 seconds, the flame snuffs itself out as if someone simply turns the gas off. But then as the system senses that there is in flame, you then hear the gas valve shut off. So, the flame is going out before the system shuts the gas off. Makes no sense. I thought maybe the flue is blocked, causing the flame to back pressure on itself, but when I hold a match above the flame, the flame from the burner goes out, yet the match stays lit. Enough so that it instantly relights the flame.
I'm starting to think that the orifice for the burner is worn enough that it's affecting the flame just enough to make in unstable, and yet I wouldn't have thought so. I'm stumped and it's very frustrating!
But despite dental problems and fridge problems, this is a pretty tough place to have a bad day!
Lots of people enjoying the beach.
The view from where we had lunch.
Having fun in the water.
This morning, we went to turn the water pump on. Nothing! Man, we have never had so many things go bad all at once. I'll look at it sometime today. This is Sherman's way of telling us not to leave him alone for so long again!
Looking out Sherman's front window, the Holland America Veendam pulled in to port. It's just a small ship with 1,350 passengers.
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