The house of pain is never a particularly enjoyable experience, least of all when you're in a foreign country, two massive holes in your teeth with the broken off chips to prove it and the dentists voice on the phone mentioning something about a root canal.
Five days short of getting on a plane back down under, the pain and fear of flying with extreme toothache overtook my desire to get to the high ropes course in Lauterbrunnen and I made an appointment - an experience in itself. 'Bonjour, (insert long sentence on french here)' 'Uhhh Bonjour, parlez vous anglais?' .... 'and does the dentist speak english?'
Next day arrived at dentist feeling slightly nauseated at what was to come. At reception was presented with two forms to complete - in French. Stumbled through most of the questions (including do you have syphillis??) with my basic French knowledge but came to a few at the end which I has to ask about...upon this was presented with the same form...in English!
Into the torture chamber, very flash and modern with shiny new equipment - it's all part of the distraction tactic...After being sorted with a bib by the assistant I was left to ponder my fate for 5 minutes before the dentist arrived. She started off on a bit of a spiel en francais before I politely interrupted 'en anglais s'il vous plait?' to which she replied 'Oh sorry....I am the dentist'. After a quick examination, which involved attacking injured teeth with cotton bud sprayed with liquid nitrogen (OUCH!) and X-ray of the war zone that is my mouth she decided on some root work on the really bad tooth and three temporary fillings to get me home as pain free as possible. One cavity was so big it was touching the nerve, hence the pain! Very naughty. So out comes the giant but super skinny anesthesia needle and into both gums, inside AND outside on the bad side. Much grinding, scraping and drilling later one temporary filling is in. Focus switches to the bad side - dentist tests out whether anesthetic has worked by blowing cold air onto raw nerve - b****, still hurts. Another injection into outside of gum....still not numb. Another into the inside of gum, getting tongue on it's way past - tongue now numb, tooth still can feel cold air. Last injection straight down through the hole in my tooth - that should do it!
Drill, poke, prod, clean, scrape for what seemed an eternity when suddenly something bursts right above my mouth! Whatever it was goes all over me, including my face and in my mouth. Dentist was very apologetic and assures me it's not dangerous - just some cleaning product - and I wouldn't question her there...tasted like I was drinking bleach! Unable to use the lovely pink water to gargle it away as mouth was full of various clamps and tongue restricting devices, was left with it burning slightly in the back of my throat.
Another eternity passes before I am allowed access to the pink water and everything is done. Due to the earlier altercation between my tongue and the anesthetic needle, speaking was a bit of a challenge so had to communicate with the dentist by a combination of gesturing and mumbling. Upon getting out of dentists chair, noticed some red/orange splashes on my black top. Immediate thought was that the sneaky dentist had yanked a tooth out without me knowing - this was quickly dismissed and instead blamed on the mysterious cleaning product explosion earlier. Again she was very apologetic about t-shirt and said if it didn't come out in the wash she'd arrange compensation for a new t-shirt - dude, bleach does not come out in the wash!!
Thank god my credit card worked and feeling very numb and sorry for myself, yet glad I was temporarily fixed, headed back to the station to meet Aim.
On the way back to the station bumped into Kirk! Very random. Shame I couldn't have spent more time with him but had a chat, got a photo and off to catch the train to Lauterbrunnen.
I know it's a big call and one I've made many times already but seriously....most amazingly beautiful place I've seen. Huge jagged cliffs, snowy mountains, green everywhere, waterfalls, lakes....ahhh gorgeous. But freeeezing, first time in i dont know how long we've been able to see our breath! Sadly only one night here but no worries - it's top of the list for places to come back to. That high ropes course is waiting for me. Heart Switzerland xo