Saturday, January 26, 2008

Pharmacy sign

In Paris, whenever you see a sign like this - or at least looking like this - you can be sure there is a drugstore underneath it. It's called a Caduceus (Caducée in France) and it shows - culture time everyone! - Hygieia 's cup (Hygieia , as you all know(!) was a daughter of Asclepius and the goddess of health, cleanliness and sanitation ) in which a snake spits out its venom that is used in the preparation of remedies. There are about 70 000 23 000 pharmacies in France (1 for every 2 700 inhabitants) and they only sell drugs. No soda, no electronics, nor food... like in US drugstores!!


  1. Oh my goodness did i make it? Did i? Wow i like the drug sign. No i don't like drugs, i like your sign. Luminous and green and pretty! Did i make it first? lol !!

  2. AHAHAHAHAHAHHHHHAAAAAA !! I did. i made it....sigh...oh the fun the fun. Okay yes i'm very sad but what a giggle. Phx are you there? he he

  3. Lynn this proves no one can compete with you!!!
    Congrats! You're number one! I'm not sure what it means but still, congrats!

    Concerning the picture, what happened to the green cross that indicates the drugstores??? I saw so many of them there, but never saw any pharmacy with a snake and a cup.
    Great shot, great effect, I love the black background.

  4. he he oh yes but Phx mentioned her embarrassment yesterday at her own excitement; just look at mine. LOL. It's obscene! Quite beside myself! Phx is not here at all i think Eric posted extra early tonight oh dear.

    I think i too recall the green cross. This looks like some kind of entrance to a trendy, exotic night club don't you think? lol.

  5. Hey Monica! Hope all is well with you.

    Nice post Eric although I prefer yesterday's post and colours more.


  6. Hi Clo, I'm fine tks! And you?!

    I agree Lynn, I think Eric got us fooled. He probably went to a night club this friday night, then at the last minute he remembered he had to take a photo for PDP and decided to tell us this Hygieia's and this Asclepius something story so that we wouldn't know where he really spent the night.
    I bet tomorrow he's going to a rave.

  7. Quite so Monica! lol he's dancing away right now under that sign i bet. he he. He cannot fool us. We know it's the green cross. ;)

  8. Hi everyone! I'm new to the community. I'm going to Paris on the 13th of April and I am very excited. I will definitely be keeping an eye out for these signs! I'm so excited. Anyone have any tips for me?? Thanks.

  9. I would say "they only sell drugs and health-related products" because they do sell Yves Rocher and other stuff like that.

    How did you get that sharp contrast? Well done!

  10. Welcome Megan! :)

    As they say in French, en Avril ne te découvre pas d'un fil, en Mai, fait ce qu'il te plait! or something like that.

    In short, in April, it's still kind of chilly so bring layers of clothing. It could be cold, it could be raining, or it could be fantastic weather. So you'll need layers.

    I would also make sure to wear the MOST COMFORTABLE shoes you can get because you're gonna be walking A LOT in Paris. Most people underestimate how much walking they're gonna do in Paris.

    And my last piece of advice is ... ENJOY!! :-D)

  11. By the way, is the pharmacy still the only place you can get a hold of a condom, in France, or has that changed? Just curious. :D

  12. Megan, you're welcome! Check the forum (left side of the blog). They have topics and stuff that may be of interest to you. And welcome to PDP! :)

  13. Maybe because it's Friday and I'm in the mood for love... but I thought it was a martini and a penis!!

    Congratulations Lynn on being #1 - didn't you serve up a blue looking cocktail on your site recently??

  14. LMAO Pont Girl !!!!!!!
    That proves our point, doens't it? Lynn and I are sure Eric took this photo at the entrance of a night club.

    This sign looks like anything but a pharmacy sign!!!

  15. Oh Lynn, Lynn, Lynn, you won fair and square. No excuses,(SCOTTSDALE TRAFFIC) and all I could think about was getting a ticket and trying to explain the reason why I was speeding. You are winner and first champion of the first PDP electronic finger fight.
    Oh, yes, the picture. I've noticed they even have pharmacies for animals in Paris. Don't they have a special logo for that too?. I think I saw it at a Pharmacy across from rue Cherche midi and Monparnasse---I'll have to check out the streets when I get off pdp.

    I hate losing...grrrrrr.

  16. LOL Pont Girl yes i thought it looked like a trouser-snake myself but didn't mention!

    Yes Mon' he's definitely at a sultry sexy bar somewhere i reckon, dancing with those twinkle-toes.

    Phx: he he I felt sorry though that Eric posted earlier than usual. Traffic is bad luck. Feel compensated by my feeling the same embarrassment you felt yesterday. Oh the pink of my cheeks! Oh the pink. lol at finger fight.

  17. Wow first I thought it was the sign telling us that "Happy Hour" had started...Mon Dieu!!! LOL!!

    Gotta love those French pharmacists, they can actually be a travelers "best friend". They are much more helpful with diagnosing a problem than American pharmacists and usually can dispense medication that one would need a prescription for in the US. They do have more than drugs though..they also have my favorite toothpaste...LOL!!

    tomate...I can't believe you wrote that proverbe!!! In the middle of our wild storm this morning I was looking at the month of "Avril" on one of my Paris calendars and that proverbe came to my mind, which we memorized in grammar school..[figures I had forgotten the whole thing]so I looked it up! The picture on the calendar was of the lovely art nouveau Metro station at Reaumur and it was trapped in fog and the streets and sidewalk were wet.

    Proverbe : « En avril ne te découvre pas d’un fil ; en mai, fais ce qu’il te plaît ; en juin, tu te vêtiras d’un rien »

    "In April don't take off a thread; in Mai do as you please; in June dress yourself in nothing" LOL!!

    Megan..Bonjour from one "Californian" to another!! I have a ton of Paris links and info for you, just click on my email and send me your questions. If you haven't purchased your plane tickets click onto the "Opodo" link that Eric has on the front page of the is really one of the best!

  18. Very nice, I seem to be drawn to neon.

  19. I'm guessing this pharmacy specializes in Viagra.

  20. I thought it was a martini and a "trouser snake," too, Lynn and pont girl--especially in light of last night's discussion.

    Still being new to the community (and always posting after everyone's gone to bed), I always feel late joining in the fun. But I love reading what you all have to say and you make me laugh!

    Megan, you're going to love it.

  21. Oh gosh. By the way, Eric, I really like this photo. (This is a photo blog, isn't it?) I don't know how to photograph light so close up. It always looks so glaring to my little camera. This is pretty on the dark background.

  22. Oh no Petrea, don't feel late. My advice is let the ladies go on and make fools of themselves then you can jump in at the last minute and bring sanity to us all.

    Hmmm...coctails, trouser snakes, what ARE you thinking? If I recall, this symbol is international in the medical community isn't it?

    Megan, Tomate's advice is just the perfect medecin for a successful visit to Paris.

  23. Bienvenue, Megan. I'm also considering Paris in mid-April, after Venice and Milan. (Leonardo's "Last Supper" is in Milan.) Stay tuned to Paris Daily Photo (PDP): maybe we'll have another picnic on the Seine. How long will you be there?

    Regarding everyone's comments on the photo. I thought it was a martini, but, ahem, ladies, if you're accustomed to 'trouser snakes' that look like this, your beaus are in severe pain! Were they like this before or after you met them?

  24. If I'm providing the sanity we're all in trouble.

  25. So Eric, you're going to have some explaining to do when you come back from this "night club" where the readers have placed you. I will do my best to keep them distracted until you come up with a believable story.

    Tomate Farcie asked if " the pharmacy still the only place you can get a hold of a condom, in France, or has that changed?"

    Well, besides boxes on the street and distributors in the Metro, I believe you're right Tomate.

    However, you might try buying them in the Commune of Condom, located in the Midi-Pyrénées of France. You can't miss it, because Condom is located on the river Baïse!

  26. Michael - where do you find these things?? It's 9:30 p.m. and I'm waiting for my date to arrive (en retard comme usual). I have a hankering for a pomegranite martini - don't know why...

    Okay, Jeff, so maybe it's a sperm then.

    Hi Megan - I'm from Californie too. Welcome!

    Eric, when you come back from your naughty evening, please do tell us what "drugstore" you took this photo at.

  27. Hey, I'm from Californie, aussi. I notice Megan and tonton_flaneur are from the north. pont girl and I are almost neighbors. It would be nice to meet on the Seine for that picnic with Jeff in April.

  28. Oooh Pont Girl, we're going to want all kinds of details about your date now that you've shared that with us! Be sure to tell him/her what interesting discussions you were having at PDP. I'm sure that will get you way past the pomegranite martini craving.

  29. Petrea said..."If I'm providing the sanity we're all in trouble." LOL

    And Jeff, you're always the snake in the grass aren't you? Lurking on those newcomers to Paris so that you can show them around town. We've got your number guy!

    Regarding this year's picnic on the Seine, is there anything posted on the PDP Forum to try and combine dates? Lynn will need some pressure to get her butt on a train this year, so we should start early.

  30. pont girl is on her way out on a date. I'm getting ready to go to bed. We live about 20 miles from each other in the same time zone. I believe this says something, either about the difference in our ages, or the difference between being single and being married.

    Good night, all.

  31. Michael, he'll just thank Eric for getting me into an amorous mood ;)

    Petrea - you are my neighbor!! BTW, Ruth's Chris steakhouse in your hometown has the best pomegranite martini ever, bar none!

  32. Petrea...what an interesting name (and person I've discovered)! hee hee

    But with that name, "How do you say that?"

    I love it Puh-tree-uh! :-)

  33. LOOOOOOOOOL, OK you went wild again (and from what I saw, it's mostly the Californians' fault, LOL)!

    I must say that I would have never thought this image would get comments such as :

    "Maybe because it's Friday and I'm in the mood for love... but I thought it was a Qartini and a penis!!" quote: Pont gril!! (BTW, just out of curiosity, how many guys with such a curly penis did you have sex with in your life?!!)

    And no Lynn I was not "at a sultry sexy bar somewhere i reckon, dancing with those twinkle-toes." !!

    I was in my bed, trying to catch up the sleep I did not get during this very busy week at work!!

    PHX-CDG: "Oh, yes, the picture. I've noticed they even have pharmacies for animals in Paris. Don't they have a special logo for that too?. I think I saw it at a Pharmacy across from rue Cherche midi and Montparnasse---" We do?! I must check this on Monday!

    Tonton, you like Elgydium?! interesting... It's very salty, isn't? Thanks for the June part of the proverb, I did not know it BTW.

    Tomate and Michael: in fact no, now, big progress, you can find condoms everywhere. They liberalized the distribution of condoms in the 80's to help fight aids even though it was very controversial at that time. Funny how it's now so natural to find them in supermarkets, bars, even vending machines!

    But Michael, I must say, you made me laugh to tears when I found out that the city Condom (which for the French is not so funny though, because we don't really use this word; we use "Capote" (hood) or "Préservatif") was on the Baïse (f..k) river!!!

    Talking about picnic Jeff, of course PDP will have its annual Seine picnic while you're here, isn't that the ritual??? And Megan, of course, you're invited to join us - ans so are my faithful visitors ;)

  34. BTW Petrea, your website is great. You've got a fantastic voice, but I'm sure I'm not the first one to tell you this!!

    I'm currently watching your acting video clip. You have a thing for legal parts, dont' you?!

    Do visit Petrea's site everyone, it's here!

  35. Me again,

    I can't resist posting what an English friend of mine sent me this morning (the English - Not you Lynn! - are known for making jokes about the French and use all kinds of stereotypes for that).
    It relates to a big financial scandal that you may have heard of (the French Bank Société Générale confessed 2 days ago having lost 5 billion Euros, after one of their traders (Jérôme Kerviel) conned them.)


    Friends of rogue trader Jerome Kerviel last night blamed his $7 billion losses on unbearable levels of stress brought on by a punishing 30 hour week. Kerviel was known to start work as early as nine in the morning and still be at his desk at five or even five-thirty, often with just an hour and a half for lunch.
    One colleague said: "He was, how you say, une workaholique. I have a family and a mistress so I would leave the office at around 2pm at the latest, if I wasn't on strike.

    "But Jerome was tied to that desk. One day I came back to the office at 3pm because I had forgotten my stupid little hat, and there he was, fast asleep on the photocopier.

    "At first I assumed he had been having sex with it, but then I remembered he'd been working for almost six hours."

    As the losses mounted, Kerviel tried to conceal his bad trades by covering them with an intense red wine sauce, later switching to delicate pastry horns.

    At one point he managed to dispose of dozens of transactions by hiding them inside vol-au-vent cases and staging a fake reception.

  36. Your comments made me laugh at tears everybody!!
    Eric you can add that in France we can find the subway! So glamour.
    This sign is not rare in Paris, but it's true that you see more often the Green Cross with 6 branches. And sometimes, the snake and the cup are included in the cross.

    The doctor sign is also a snake but not associates with a chalice (cup) but with a wood stick (called "verge" in French which means "penis" in English..! You were not so wrong everybody. LOL) and the real name is "the Esculape (Latin term)or Asklepios (Greek term) stick".
    These symboles (chalice and snake) are also the two symboles of Saint John in the Renaissance and Middle Age iconography but I didn't make the link before seeing Eric's picture. Thanks Eric!

    Who said that my studies were boring and useless?? :)

    Good saturday to you all.

  37. Sorry for all the mistakes... :S

  38. What mistakes Guille? Looks perfect to me - AND interesting!

  39. Oh thanks Michael I thought it was full of grammar mistakes that I was unable to correct by myself!
    But even after your comment, a doubt remains in me lol.

  40. I've never seen them being sold in supermarkets Eric, but I believe you if you say so. I would have thought, however, that the blogger that you are would have mentioned that you can buy them online! But who am I to argue with
    the Roi de la Capote?

  41. LOL Michael.

    BTW, after all that talk, here it is after 12pm and no sign of Lynn, Monica, Pont Girl... The time difference gives excuse to Monica and Pont Girl, but Lynn, you have a lot of explaining to do!!

  42. Perfect, Guille. Except we say 'laughed till i cried' or 'you had me in tears!'. Sooo interesting your piece was.

    So Michael - boxes of condoms on the streets? Good heavens. Whilst i applaud the cause, in Britain i can't imagine the piles of elderly ladies you'd find, having fainted at the sight and flopped onto the pavement! It would be a shock i think. Here in the UK you still go into the chemist to buy them, but faced with the hard lady chemist stare, come out with some Lucozade or tissues instead. They are sold in garages and in the gents' toilets in pubs. Not in ladies'. Far too shocking for the gentle Brit. lol.

    I recall giggling into my teenage satchel in Paris when we learned about 'preservatif'. In Britain, preserves are jam or marmalade and preservatives are sugar or alcohol to preserve a food longer. I've never heard the hood one, that's new. Condom is most common. Though many used to use the brand name i.e. 'a Durex'.

    Pont Girl how was the date? Are you up yet? We want details. Was it a dinner date or a condom coupling? Oh sorry that was far too personal; i must remember i'm English! My sincere apologies. Such talk! Tut.

  43. Hi Eric, i'm here as you see! I have no explanation to excite you with i'm afraid. There was no condom copulation going on in my neck of the woods. I merely got up late (the annoying barking dog nearby was silenced this morning) and did a few errands. By the way, Pont Girl, at my blog this morning suggests that you and i both have been dirty in our posts today!

    Yours, for certain Eric and yes, it's bendy and curly (no i've no experience of that. Well...actually... no not really (!) but the 'end' shall we say, that is definitely phallic and there's no excuse for it. So there. I am still firmly of the belief that you were propping up the bar of a smoky, subterranean cocktail bar.

  44. Wow Petrea i'm so impressed by you! Your site is really interesting and your voice is delicious, like excited honey.

    I've done a lot of acting too and a little voice over years ago - i'd like to do the voice thing again. Give me some tips, do!

  45. Oh no, Lynn "talks" too! Can you imagine? I thought she only existed in words, but now we have the fear of hearing her doing a commercial for Durex perhaps. Oh no Petrea, please don't encourage this British lass. We could all be in for it. hee hee

  46. Lynn that's fun coz I met a guy last summer in India who was American and tried to speak French: once he said to me that there were too much "préservatif" in his noddles soup! I laughed till I cried (thanks!), and tried to explain to him that the word he used, meant "condom" and I hoped for his health that he didn't find a condom in his soup.
    So your "preservatives" means "conservateurs" in French...

  47. Yes exactly, Guille! lol goodness what an unsavoury prospect; a little rubber friend floating in your consomme. Eeuuuww.

    Yes, Michael, i talk! LOL. I could hear myself velveting through a condom advert actually... closest i ever got was doing an ad. for the Reperbaum. I recall the director saying, now this sentence needs pure sex. GIVE it to the mic. Yes he actually did. Oh Lord. I think he had ideas beneath his station.

  48. "ideas beneath his station"?

    Trust me Guille, even I'm lost on that one!

  49. Bonjour Eric..
    Did you dream about me then ;)?

  50. Ah sorry Michael an English colloquialism. If someone has visions of higher things and acts in a lofty, social climbing way, we say they 'have ideas above their station'. It's an old saying, station meaning position in life. Obviously the studio director's leanings were downwards, in my view.

  51. lol Anne! That made me giggle. I bet he did. Especially with that persistent penis picture on his mind.

  52. "persistent penis" LOL! what an interpretation!

  53. OK, Lynn is wide awake, I've got the confirmation now...

    Anne: of course ;)

  54. I am, Eric, i am, and did you dream of me too Eric, did you, did you? ;)

  55. Be careful before you reply Eric. Just so you are assured, I know that the Pharmacy in Paris does sell medicine to treat nightmares.

  56. Very stylish sign, the Pharmacy can no tbe missed!

    So true about the Pharmacies here in the States. just the other day I needed to pick up a medication perscription and had to wait in line for people buying some groceries and batteries. Sad but true. I was irritated.

  57. Oh so cruel, Michael. Cruel; i am cut to the quick. How SHALL you make it up to me?

    Dusty lens; In the UK we have prescription desks in large chemists such as Boots, so that other shopping can be done at other tills. In smaller chemists though, you do sometimes get the problem of someone buying soap or toothpaste when you need a prescription.

  58. Lynn, you know I was teasing. I was actually referring to the, uh, well, um, image of this martini surrounded by a snake that might give Eric nightmares.

    In the U.S. we also have separate "tills" in most major drugstores for pharmaceuticals and others for toilet paper. However, you can pay for your preservatifs at either.

    BTW, where does the word "till" come from anyway? We call them "cash registers".

  59. Pay no attention to him Lynn my love. Michael should be nicer to you. If you were sick I would run out in the middle of the night in rain storm and buy you your medicine to make you better feel.

  60. I figured under every sign like that there would be a bar :)

  61. This has been a fun set of posts to read! Enlightening and entertaining, all at the same time! You guys are crazy, I love it! Of course, I am late on the posting because I'm on the east coast of the US and I slept in because it's Saturday and my band played a show last night so I was up later than my usual bedtime.

  62. I too thought the photo was something a bit seedy, lets say!

    You guys have all been hard at it today (commenting!), its made me laugh!

    Lynn, I think you've got too much time on your hands LOL :)

  63. Good morning.

    I feel as though I've been discovered. Better to be discovered by all of you than by Stephen Spielberg.

    "Excited honey"--Lynn, I'm going to put that on my resume. (Accent aigu is not on my keyboard.)

    Eric, you may have to set up a separate site for conversation! You've created quite a community here.

    To Guille, and to all the people who write in English (when it's not your first language): a heartfelt thank you. I think it's completely generous of you. A little misspelling is nothing. How kind of you to go to the trouble. I can't speak for the others, but please don't apologize for an imperfection.

    When people write in French here I understand it. But if I wrote in French, it would take me hours to write a paragraph. You might understand what I said, but it probably wouldn't be what I meant.

  64. Petrea, thanks :)

    To all,
    does this symbol mean something for you: "$" (I mean except the money which is falling down right now?) ?

    I give you a clue, there's an obvious connection with the picture of today...


  65. Rofl Rolf! All that attention has gone to my head, it's positively divine and i thank you. My love already! Sizzle.

    Marley what better way to spend those redundant minutes of the day?! I like a lot on my hands.

    Michael of course i knew that. lol. Till i'd have to research i'm really not sure.

    Petrea - just the way i heard it! Your voice is like that. Lovely.

  66. Guille, no, you have me stuck. What does "$$$$$$$" mean then?

  67. Eric, I have been to Paris, Lyon, Toulouse and Carcassone, but I have never seen this sign. It must be new?

  68. Hi Eric, I'm here now. Did you get sore feet from all the dancing last night?!
    Wow, I guess once again Lynn and I managed to somehow turn your "innocent" post into a riot...
    mea culpa...I admit...
    How cocky you are today, I can't believe you asked Pont Girl this:
    "BTW, just out of curiosity, how many guys with such a curly penis did you have sex with in your life?!!"

    I'd blush if he'd asked me that...

    Ok not really, I know Lynn and I have said much more obscene things to Eric in the past. The only reason he didn't get a restrainning order against us is because this is a virtual world, otherwise...

  69. Megan welcome!
    I'm sure you'll have the best time ever in Paris.

    Here's a link I got from the nice people of PDP last year, it was very useful to check out street adresses in Paris

  70. I'm off to check out Petrea's site now!

  71. $$$$$$$

    The hissing of a snake?


    It's all I could think of.

  72. what excellent comments and funny photo.

    oops - i meant what funny comments and excellent photo.

  73. Actually I was talking about the shape of the Dollar sign!

    $ It is the snake winded around the Asklepios stick. The doctor emblem...

    I discovered this meaning today and I was very surprised coz I never asked myself before about this sign. Maybe because it's not my money... :)

    Good night everybody.

    And please don't think I want to show off! (Too young for that ;) )I'm just curious about all the hidden senses of the day-to-day things and signs.

  74. In my travels I have noticed that China has advanced in so many ways. In fact, the Chinese are well on their way to overtake France in both the Love AND Fashion departments! I wonder if you can pick up one of these little outfits in the pharmacy there?

  75. oooh I want one of those dresses michael ;-)

  76. Hey look, I'm still alive!

    Just thought I'd get that out of the way first. I'm fine, school's going great, moved into an apartment of my own a couple weeks ago. Yay!

    Ok, now for comments on the post: I've been looking for designs/symbols relating to medicine so that when I graduate I can have the perfect one tattooed on me. I think this is a contender mostly because I love mythology so I like the story behind it. Plus I'd probably go into a fit of giggles whenever someone asked me about it because I'd be thinking of curly penis's now! *sigh* I think I need to start a tattoo fund, the medicine related one is the 4th on my list that I want to get!

  77. So glad to hear that school is going great Soosha. New apartment too! Now how is that Paris visit fund coming along? Will you make it for the annual picnic on the Seine this year? I hear Lynn is planning her trip now.

    As for the tattoo, I'm wondering where you would have the curly penis penned? Any ideas?

    Great to hear from you and don't be a stranger.

  78. Paris fund is going great, I'm at about $1000! Dunno if I'll be able to make it for the picnic. If not I'm hoping to make a quick stop in good ole England to see Lynn on my way to Paris!

    I have no idea where my curly penis wrapped around a champagne glass would go! Out of my 4 tattoos on my wish list I only know where 2 of them would go for sure. I've got an idea for the 3rd, but I guess I'll have to figure something out for the last. Can't have a penis in plain sight if I want a serious career!

  79. LOL Soosha
    So nice to hear from you. I thought you'd be in Paris by now.

    I have a tatoo of my own on my wrist. No, not a pennis, it's a tiny little star. Just imagine how distracted I'd be if I had to look at a curly snake like the one in Eric's photo everyday...

  80. Boy, you got a lot of spam from this post. I was just going to comment that the goblet looks like a manhattan cocktail glass to me. All it needs is the cherry.

  81. @Oakland DP. Yes I HAD a lot of spam on this post I don't why. I got rid of it now, but it took me some time...