View of Loja Central Park from the window of my hostel
Awoke yesterday and accomplished the following in under three hours… as a ‘walk-in’… no appointments:
1. Got my teeth cleaned. 2. Got a tetanus shot, a typhoid fever shot and script for anti malarial medications (a script is not necessary but I asked the doc to write it down for me to hand to the pharmacist)
Sign over the entry of Loja dentist’s office as seen from the sidewalk
There are six dentists (signs displayed on the outside of buildings, seen from the sidewalks) within a ten minute walk of my hostel. Not knowing any of them, I just took a chance and entered one with a sign that appealed to me. Walked up two flights of stairs and into the open door. There was a young man sitting behind a counter at a computer. I introduced myself and requested a cleaning. He said something in Spanish that I did not fully comprehend. He went on Google translate and typed it in. He wanted me to pay for a ‘consultation’ fee before the cleaning. Cut to the chase. I negotiated a price that included the ‘consult fee’.
Received excellent care. He’d been practicing for about 10 years. I was the sole client. He was his own secretary and staff. No one else in the office. He went right to work. There was a regular dental ‘couch’ with the built in ceramic spitoon attached. He used a water injector cleaning tool and the usual suction device. Had all the needed tools of the trade. Topped it off with an anti-caries preventative treatment. Total time from walk in to being back on the sidewalk… 50 minutes.
See the letters on the building… my Loja hostal
The doctors office where I got the two vaccinations is on the second floor of my hostel. Didn’t take long to find it. I explained to the doctor that I was planning to visit the jungle area. He positioned himself in front of his computer and asked me a few questions about when I received my previous vaccinations and what they were. He agreed with my determinations about what I thought I needed. Again, no secretary, no staff, he is it. No fancy machinery adorned his office. I have high confidence that this man is a qualified and competent physician. His diplomas and certifications (from a local medical school) were proudly displayed on the walls of his office. He administered the shots, gave me a script for the malaria pills and told me when they must be started and that I must take 1 pill per day while in the jungle. He gave me a printed copy of the dosages of the vaccinations and date received. I paid him. Done. Time between entering the office and departing for my room upstairs: 20 minutes.
Here are some statues that were scattered in the hallways of my hostal
If I were to settle in Loja I would not need a car or motorcycle to get around. All needs are to found within a comfortable walking distance. If I chose to venture further, buses and taxis are to be found everywhere. Everything is, at least at this point in time, a very good value.
Goodbye Loja, at least for now. This is a very nice town with good food and good people.
Next entry will be from Vilcabamba.