My Grumpy Day

Let's subtitle that "why country folk live longer that city folk".

Today was another dentist's appointment. That is, he said "come back Friday for the final impressions". So, a one hour walk, a one hour bus ride, a 10 minute cab ride and he's not there. I am told "He will be in the afternoon. We tried to call you but we don't have your phone number."

So, I got reminded that I live in Nicaragua. That time is unimportant. That having your business hours posted on your door (8-12AM, 2-6PM) doesn't matter. And, while you have an email address on your business card and you have my email address, that would not be a solution. Now, I hate telephones as much as I hate accounting but, still, it would seem that if you only had one communications option, you would use it.

I went on to explain that I am there in the morning because that's when I can be based on when buses run. She said "I don't know when you can come back". I said I didn't either.

So, why do country folk live longer? Things that come to mind are clean air, more likely to walk than travel in an exercise-free manner, diet with less/much less meat and lack of easy access to traditional medical care. The last is my opinion and will surely conflict with that of some but let's take just the dental part. You start out with a healthier lifestyle and then if your tooth rots off, no matter, you have lots of others. You don't travel to the city, wait in lines and, in general, get filled with chemicals and jerked around.

Unfortunately, I was a city person for 50 years so I didn't walk enough, ate too much crap, filled my body with air pollution and my teeth with city-like dental work with a limited lifespan. It my next life, maybe I will be luckier.

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Um, both my grandparents had false teeth by their late 40s

Ate like Nicaraguans, too: beans and corn and greens with meat as flavoring, more milk, though, maybe. I used to visit them as a child and don't remember ever not seeing the false teeth in the jars at night. Of my mother's people who were urban, only one uncle had false teeth, from being dosed with some mercury-formulary as a child which damaged his teeth.

Caries became more common in the Neolithic with more grain eating. Wikipedia says, "Skulls dating from a million years ago through the neolithic period show signs of caries, excepting those from the Paleolithic and Mesolithic ages." Vegetarian diets are rough on your teeth.

Most people now in the really developed urban cultures like Japan and Hong Kong live into their 80s as a matter of course. Monaco, which is pure city and the most densely populated country on the earth, has an average life span of 89, according to the CIA, apparently the healthiest place on the planet. All the highest life spans are from small city states: Macau, San Marino, Andorra. Andorra has only 2% agriculture and makes most of its money being a tax haven and tourist resort; San Marino is 20,000 people in 24 square miles, apparently no agriculture at all.

Rural people don't live longer; it just seems longer because it's so boring.

My Nicaraguan dental story is that my dentists' newly hired assistant accidentally threw away my first mold and they were rather relieved that I didn't pitch a typical gringo fit about it. We all had a laugh and they made a new impression and double-timed the thing to and from Managua.

Rebecca Brown

sorry you had a bad day Phil...

All the world's a stage and most of us are desperately unrehearsed. -Sean O'Casey

"Rural people don't live

"Rural people don't live longer; it just seems longer because it's so boring"

That made me laugh!

I thought it was because they don't move....

You keep seeing the same people in the same place at the same time of day so it looks like they have been there for years.

Pretty much every trip

to town is a grumpy day. If I have 4 or 5 things to do on my list, 2 or 3 will end up bad or half done.

It starts out with the potholes and insane traffic, sometimes added to by a fishing expedition roadblock, and then you get to the office were the ``responsable`` isn`t in during her scheduled hours, or the store that is out of a common item , or the hardware store clerk who is obviously annoyed that you interupted her day dream or have the audacity to want to buy more than 2 items.

3 times in the last couple months I have had to take the relatives to town to waste their afternoon fighting about the bills at Claro, the biggest scumbag outfit I have ever had to deal with. Same drill every time: wait in line 2 hours in the freezing office, show all your paperwork to the clueless sales rep who goes into the mysteriòus òther room` to talk to the `resposable` and eventually the clueless rep resolves the problem in our favor, but that is not a guarantee that they will not so the same thing again next month. Disnorte is much less a PITA. the other day they delivered outrapril and June bills for the first time. The May bill was paid when delivered. I payed tthe 2 new bills and so far no problems, no trip to town, no `responsable`, etc. Disnorte may be clueless, but they don`t rub your facein their errors.

The trade off here is that in exchange for a pleasant climate, a change of pace, and financial bargains on A FEW things, you get a general lowering of your quality of life. Your time is not your own to use wisely as you see fit; your time belongs to other people to squander as they see fit.

"You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality." Ayn Rand