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Mixed Feelings from Sweden

November 19th, 2012

I have just been attending the Swedish national dental exhibition in Göteborg.

In my humble opinion, this is one of the best examples of a successful expo, combined with dentists’ conference.

Had one not been aware of the fact that there was a conference running parallel to the exhibition, one would not have noticed.

The expo floors were usually busy. Yes, one hall was better-attended than another, but that often happens.

However, over the 2 1/ 2days, most exhibitors were very satisfied with the attendance, the interest paid by the visitors, and the sales, especially so, considering the overall economical climate.

Attached to the exhibition halls and congress centre is the Gothia Towers hotel complex, full of the usual conference rooms, restaurants, meeting areas and terrific, yet rather noisy sky-bar on the 23rd floor.

From there, one could view the neighbouring luna park, occasionally lit up by fireworks, the giant Ferris wheel constantly illuminated –

The expo was full of celebrations, parties, noisy singers, percussion groups. Here’s an early morning view of one of the halls, a view of me grabbing one of my customer’s ‘thousands’ of bottles of sparkling wine (their 65th year in the business, and the launch of their new composite) – just look at the display – and those pralines…

There was also a sad side. Many of you will know the name ‘Sverker Toreskog’. He is Sweden’s most beloved dentist. A giant of a man. Their greatest lecturer, orator, singer.

Nobody has done more for advancing the joy of dentistry in Sweden and abroad than this man. No one has done more for the colour “RED” than this man. No one has brought more smiles to those around him – no one has earned and received more hugs.

I have had the honour and pleasure of meeting him several times in my dental life.

Earlier this year, in my capacity as friend and president of the DBU – Dental Buddies of the Universe – I spent a weekend with him, with Agneta, his wonderful wife, and a hoard of dental friends, celebrating his 75th birthday on a Swedish golfing weekend. I interviewed him for the DBU Den-Tales magazine.

He was then ill; we all knew this was difficult time for him. Of course, all, especially Sverker himself, oozed positiveness. All would be OK. How could there not be a Sverker.

Now the news is not good. Sverker is in a Göteborg hospice. The prognosis is bad.

I was considering taking time off from the exhibition to visit Sverker. But there he was, being pushed along the aisles by Agneta. He wanted to see and be seen. He wanted pictures to be taken with and of. He wanted to hug and be hugged, to smile and bring smiles – knowing that some will show tears. (The lady on her knees lost her beloved husband 2 years ago. She knew what this couple were now going through…) –

I have a request to ask of you all: write to Sverker. His email address is sverker@toreskog.com. (Check-out his website if you want to know more about his lovely main. And, when I get the website updated, check-out the April edition of Den-Tales, which will soon be found on the website, www.dentalbuddies.com).

Whether you know than man or not, I want him to know that your prayers are with him, and that you wish there were more like him in this World.

Tell your friends…..

Stephen

Smile – Promote your dentist

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