Location: Whitby, Ontario, Canada

Born in Malta but in Canada since age 5. Has written three books and presently does several columns about wine and food for various magazines.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Discovering Azores Day 9: Trip to Povoacao, Dinner at Tony;s, Another Swim in the pool!

Trip To Povoacao
It was a back and froth type of thing! Do I go visit a doctor and get antibiotics or no? Is my tooth that bad and actually the aspirin are working-----most of the time but when it hurt it did come in waves and suppose there is something serious happening. I called my dentist in Canada and he gave me three questions and if I answered yes to just one of them then it was suggested to get to a doctor for antibiotics at once. I answered yes to all three.
We were off to the City of Povoacao not as tourists but as patients in need of a doctor. The trip was actually quite nice since there were some nice sites.
The directions we were given were quite accurate and soon we were in the heart of the city.
This city is located in the southeastern corner of the island of Sao Miguel in the Azores. Located some 22 kilometres from where we were staying in Furnas the drive would have been more enjoyable had I not had a painful tooth.  The winding road ascended up the volcanic hill until we reached the peak  and then started a sharp decline into the city.
Like Furnas, Povoacao is located within semi active volcano craters whose width stretches for kilometres. It was the first area to be colonized in 1427 and expanded in 1432. It became a Naval Shipyard in the 1700's and was made a municipality circa 1840!
The city was devastated in an earthquake in 1935.  .  
Centro de Saude de Povoacao 
What amazed me in seeking the urgent care facility was that while we were but a few metres from the medical centre many of those that we asked did not know anything about it or where it was. "Maybe", I said to myself, "they do not use the medical health care system as much as we do. Or maybe we use ours way too much!"
Regardless, I knew that I needed something and this was the place. We parked and went in. A lovely young lady greeted us and spoke excellent English as did many of the populous. I explained my situation and paid 55 Euros (about $75 CAD) and were told that the doctor would see us shortly.
Dr. Antonio was as I imagined he would be. Seemingly in his late 50's, sporting short thinning hair and a small mustache, he sat behind a desk looking authoritative. He had a kind face that exuded the patience of one who had seen it all. I explained my predicament.
He gently examined my teeth and was quick to react as soon as he saw the infected area. He prescribed an antibiotic Amoxicillin at a high dosage of 1000 mg three times a day plus game me Ibuprofen at a 600 mg/capsule at the same rate for pain. The pain I could handle but as soon as I knew that the infection was about to be checked I was already feeling better.
The drive back to Furnas was far more pleasant though we did encounter fog patches at the highest points of land.
The nickname of Sao Miguel is "The Green Island" because anywhere one goes is covered with greenery. When one looks at the copious amounts of rain and mist that abound during many months of the year this name is understandable. The average monthly rainfall is lowest in July at roughly 33 mm and highest in January at roughly 135 mm.
Temps fluctuate from a daytime high of 16 degrees Centigrade in February to a daytime high of 25 degrees Centigrade in August. Low temperatures at night range from 10 degrees Centigrade in February to 18 degrees Centigrade in August. Temperature patterns can vary in various districts ranging from various highs and lows but usually above freezing.
We got to Furnas just in time to head to a well known Furnas restaurant called Tony's. The fish (Abrotea) and vegetables I had was good and filled the hunger gap while the chicken and veggies pleased my partner. With our stomachs full it was back to the hotel Terra Nostra and another swim in the huge sulphur pool. It was a relaxing ending to an eventful and very busy day!
End of Day Nine