The sound of church bells chiming wakes me up. Though it’s 6:40 am and they ring for 20 minutes, it’s a sound I enjoy.

Leon picks me up at 8:30 am after I check out of the Hostel. We get to the dentist’s office with time to spare.

Dentist Business Card

The doctor and his assistant start examining me by 9 am.

After a bit of deduction, the dentist discovers the problem. He does some laser treatment on 3 places on my face. He takes an xray. The filling must be replaced. He uses muscle testing to determine what materials to use for the filling. There are other times throughout my visit where muscle testing is done. After some drilling and filling my tooth is repaired. There is no use of that black paper they use to see how the bite is. He gets it just right.

Next he cleans and polishes my teeth. He shows me how my brushing along my teeth is wearing them away. Suggests I brush up and down. He also finds 2 cavities just starting that I’ll attend to next time because he’s run out of time.

Total cost for one filling, xray and cleaning over the course of 1 hour and 15 minutes is $68.

Leon takes me to the Bank of Ecuador where I am told the computer is not available and for me to check back Monday.

We go the Ministry office and I tell them what happened at the bank. Nothing can be done until I’ve received the paperwork from the bank.

Leon takes me to the Elite Tours van place and I’m off to Loja by noon.

About an hour of Cuenca and with my eyes closed, the driver slams on the brakes and we weave to a stop. We’re on a level straight away. The drivers side tie rod has broken. The driver makes some calls. About 20 minutes later another van arrives. It’s the 12:30 pm scheduled run and lucky for us there is exactly enough seats for us all while the driver stays behind with the crippled van.

I sit beside Rorrie from Malacatos, the valley just before Vilcabamba. He’s building a house there. Born in Ireland and living in England. We spend the rest of the trip conversing which makes the drive go by quite quick.

Rorrie shares a cab with me to Ruta De Mayo where he takes off to run some errands.

Within 10 minutes I am riding the front seat Vilcabamba bound.

Back at the meditation center I quickly unpack. 

Pat and I walk to Shanta’s where we both order the Filet Mignon. It comes out close to rare with fries and vegetables. A sprinkling of spice makes the meat taste even better. Still nowhere close to Hosteria Vilcabamba.

I meet up with Chaska at the entrance to Waterwoman where she gives me some of Vinaya’s homemade bread. Amalaa passes by on her way to Madre Tierra. Fran shows up. I book a haircut with Fran.

It’s time to hang out at home.