On the road again and am back in Prague. Funnily enough, this place seems to have it in for me; I no sooner land than I start sniffling and feeling poorly with the result that a few hours later, I stand in a queue at the local pharmacy hoping that they have simple drugs like Panadols.
After a short wait in a queue behind a bohemian hypochondriac, I get to the desk and ask if they speak English, which they do. Many people in the Czech Republic are English-speakers, but it’s always polite to ask. I ask if I could have a packet of Panadol, noting that they are neatly stacked right behind the pharmacist I was speaking to.
“Do you have a doctor’s prescription?”
I stare at her. Perhaps “Panadol” is the Czech word for haemorrhoid cream or something equally serious. I reassure her that I am haemorrhoids free by saying, “I just want Panadol – the blue box from behind you.”
She shakes her head and asks me to step aside. A chill runs down my spine. I have visions of a burly guard smacking on a rubber glove to search me for evidence of hemorrhoids.
Pulling me aside, she furtively hands me a box of Panadols and demands money.
I walked out in a daze a few minutes later, but at least I had some drugs to steady me.