Tuesday, December 23, 2008

pharmacies: the good, the bad

so pharmacies here are pretty awesome. there's one on every block and you can get the most awesome hair care products, anti-wrinkle creams, herbal remedies, or over-the-counter anything you want. there's generally a nice young friendly knowlegeable pharmacist who will prescribe on the spot, even anti-biotics; (though there's a big media campaign against that now). contrast that with my neighborhood CVS, the one where i have to fight the crazy old ladies with no health insurance but ,any health problems to get to the counter, and they never have my prescription ready, or i have ask someone to find the key so they can open the toothbrush display case, but they can never find the key and so they just stare at you and loudly chew gum, and then the security guard is watching angrily at you waiting for the security beeper at the door to jump into action...
yeah; so french pharmacies are a little classier, more helpful than that. though, in my experience, it's not unusual for them to give you anal repositories for a stomach ache or something like that. i had a toothache once and the guy gave me something with a syringe. like a real one. my cousin once sprained a muscle and they gave him literally 4 different kinds of muscle relaxants. so there's still something a little dubious and scary about what they might give you.
so i've had this sinus infection or cold or something for months now and what better time to cure it than though the french universal health care system and their wonderful pharmacies. i pick one across the street and tell them my symptoms. nut this pharmacist is someone's grandma. where is the nice young lady with the makeup? i tell her my ears have been stuffed up, runny nose etc... and she comes out with a cocktail of nasal sprays and tubes and i don't know what. i must have had this terrified look on my face and uttered a no thanks, i think it's getting better, it will go away on my own..but this is someone's grandma. take your medicine or no dessert for you. i ask; don't people get addicted to nasal sprays and she says "yeah, if you smoke it." then i ask her if they don't have pills for this kinddof stuff and that's when she confirmed i was a junkie. i had in fact, left the apartment in my pyjamas and winter coat with the sole intention of picking up a croissant. ummm, so off i go with my 30 euros in scary tubes and the first one was a 100% seawater spray, which made me feel like i was gloucester. ahoy!! the second one grossed me out and i sneezed for an hour and i think i'll forgo the nighttime treatment, looks kidna gelatinous.
so much for the pharmacy, i think i'll just stick to the organic lip gloss and anti-cellulite creams from now on.

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