Thursday, April 21, 2005

My Astoria/36th Ave

The day started with my biking around Central Park. Then I made a walk-in appointment with a dentist down the street. I always claim I want dentists who don't do anything. My teeth are good. Please leave them that way. Well this guy was perhaps taking that to an extreme. Small place. Indian doc. One receptionist. No hygienist.

I got a simple cleaning. It cost $80, with my insurance picking up $50 of that. The dentist looked in my mouth and said, "Great teeth. No cavities." He used the whizzer machine a bit, scraped a little in the front, and said I was done. Needless to say, no pressure for x-rays or taking out my wisdom teeth. Just what I say I want. And yet somehow I feel strangely shortchanged.

So I was coming back from the Indian dentist and had just finished eating a Mexican Sandwich and having a beer. Delicio! Next to the Mexican place is a barber. So I stopped by, too lazy to buzz my own hair. Husband and wife team. I couldn't figure out where they were from, but I guessed Balkans. Their last name was something vaguely Slavic. I asked what language they were speaking. "Ve speak many languages," she answer, "but now ve are speeking Russian and Persian." How do you explain that?

Well, I'll tell you. Jews, ethnically Persian, living in what was once some form of greater Iran/Persia, and was then Russian and is now Uzbekistan. She figured her people had probably lived where they did for two hundred years or so. Most of her family is now in Israel. They were some of the first Jews to leave Russia when they could. As Yakov Smirnov says, "Vat a country!"

She also said Odessa is a very nice city and we shouldn't pass up a chance to go there.

I'm going to pack and head off to Amsterdam.

1 comment:

Zora said...

Was it then, or much later, that we found out that practically all Uzbek Jews are barbers?