to find Patti Singleton these days.

Phall Photo Friday; A Few Map Inches and 3 Counties



Or…between The Cascades and The Olympics.  Like the eyes on the portrait that follow your every move, these mountain ranges gaze down at you, no matter the direction you travel. You may not always even see them, but they are there… more Between Inlets and the Ocean photos on myPhall Photos blog here:

My regular dental clinic is only 40 minutes away, a beautiful drive through coastal forests and along Willipa Bay.  I spent my birthday yesterday traveling over 200 miles, to and from, a visit to the oral surgeon. From the Pacific Ocean, into Puget Sound and the Strait of Juan de Fuca, flow inlets, bays, canals, lakes and rivers. They flow over, through and around the luscious green forested lands of Western Washington. I did thoroughly enjoy the drive home across a few unknown map inches and three counties.

A Lesson: Let Go Of The Worry and Grab Onto The Good Stuff

My neighbor drove as I fretted and worried: Would the surgeon require I.V. sedation? How would I come up with the advance cash to pay for it? Could I convince him that I am just too afraid of general anesthesia (which I am)? Will luck be with me and the surgeon be a decent person? I was prepared to walk away if he was a stoic, judgmental creep, like some that have worked on my teeth.

How many dentists, dental students, assistants, and hygienists have had their fingers in my mouth over the years? Such an intimate thing, made clinical by necessity. Probe my ears, look up my nostrils, but please leave my other orifices to me.

I didn’t request one single photo stop on the way there; I was too busy worrying. What a waste of the beauty on the scenic route we traveled! After the two-and-a-half hour trip I was buzzing with negative energy. After pacing the waiting room floor for an hour…well, you may wonder if the dental surgeon even survived our meeting. 

The black-clad assistant led me to the consultation room. I studied the detailed tooth poster on the wall. I nervously eyed the instruments on the counter. The assistant displayed the panoramic x-ray of my mouth and jaw on a small screen next to me. She took my blood pressure (high, for me) and walked out the door, making promises about how soon the doctor would be in. 

Every one of the employees wore black tops and bottoms. Weird, after all the cheerful? bunnies and rainbows and colorful uniforms on personnel at the many hospitals and clinics I have been in. I kind of liked it. Sure, black may have been a bad choice for a place where clients are mostly afraid and nervous, but I liked the uniformity (pun?) of them all wearing the same color.

In walked Dr. Calm and I fell instantly, deeply in love. Not with the man, per se, but with the feeling he brought into the room with him. The atmosphere filled with calm, until there was no space available for my fear, anger, angst and worry. He spoke softly, he smiled, his movements were casual, he kept eye contact, and he laid aside every ounce of worry baggage that I had brought along with me. I gathered up that pile of worry and dropped it into the garbage can on my way out the door.

The drive home was spectacular.

Phall Photo Friday is a weekly feature here. Phall= P(atti) Hall.

Patti, the worry-less one (for now)

Author: Patti Singleton

Pursuits of happiness include gardening, walking the desert, reading, writing, photography, traveling and genealogy.

28 thoughts on “Phall Photo Friday; A Few Map Inches and 3 Counties

  1. Love the area, your photo, and the fact that all turned out well!

  2. Happy belated birthday!!!! xoxo

  3. Looks like an absolutely beautiful and peaceful place, though ugh I hate dentistries(sic) in general :S

  4. I’m so glad all was well Patti. Any chance you can ask him to pop over here when he has a free minute?
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

  5. I feel so conflicted Patti!! I love your photo’s as always but hate the fact that you have access to our Washington and we don’t!! lmao Girl…we so got to get your way and let you take us on a road trip around the Olympic Peninsula!! xo sharing now!! ❤

  6. but did he fix your teeth??????????????

  7. Your title drew me in, and the lesson too: Let Go Of The Worry and Grab Onto The Good Stuff. I guess we’ll find out about the dental follow-up on another post soon. Thanks, Patti.

  8. I lived out there in the late 70’s I have a similar picture but it’s tucked away. Thanks for the memory.

  9. The “ubiquitous gaze” of the mountains… I like that!

    A belated Happy Birthday too!

    Shall I presume that you will be making photo-stop requests, on your next pass through?? 😉

    Is there anything to fear, but fear it’s-self? Yes, perhaps the dentist… sometimes… and the fear of dentistry…


    • Alaska is like that too; everywhere you go, there are mountains peeking out. Unlike places like Oklahoma, where their tiny hills are called mountains, just so the word can be used 🙂
      Thanks for bday wish, M.
      Yes, we already plan on leaving very early to do photo stops, since I’m sure I will be pretty wiped out by the extractions—-no matter how great the dental surgeon is.
      Grief and fear get all stirred together…so I have managed to find things beyond fear to be afraid of.

  10. Beautiful photos as usual. Do you know what the flower/seedpod is, #23? I posted something similar on FB this morning but hadn’t identified it.

    Your title is always the best plan and you’re excellent at finding the good stuff. I love my dentist, but I’d still rather not spend time in his office. Fortunately, I haven’t had to for a few years.

    • Thanks, Elaine. I didn’t check close enough to know, but it was a dandelion-type plant with yellow flower. So many different names for those types.
      Focusing on the good stuff works well for me, unless I get derailed by some negative emotion.
      Lucky you, good dental care or good teeth genes 🙂 Maybe all three!

  11. I’m so glad your dental appointment turned out well. I’ve had my share of bad dentists. One even left me alone long enough for my Novocaine to wear off BEFORE the surgery was to start. Fortunately, the dentist that came in after him immediately responded to my tears with more anesthetic (and a lot of righteous anger on my behalf). Then one day I was referred to a new dentist who promptly told me that no one should ever experience pain. Like you, I fell in “love.” And happy belated birthday, sister 😉

  12. I’m amazed that the drive over did nothing to calm your nerves, though I can totally understand that kind of anxiety. The dentist is obviously one of the few who are really meant to do what they do. Glad you got to breathe easy and enjoy the scenery on the return visit.

    • I just let the stress get to me. I had been pretty much alone in the beach cave for a couple weeks and so being out among humans added to my stress. I have ventured out twice since then, so my hermit mode may be easing up a bit. Thank you for stopping by with kind thoughts, Alarna Rose 🙂

  13. How blessed to be living in such beautiful surroundings. 🙂

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