Wednesday, March 19, 2014

New Orleans Pharmacy Museum

Forrest and I were able to enjoy some time together this past week. I went down for a visit to help him prepare for his thesis exhibition and to escape to cold north! In between all the work we enjoyed spending time together, eating good food, cuddling with Beast (our kitty) and just loving life. The loving life part took us on a day trip down to New Orleans to visit the New Orleans Pharmacy Museum (for me!) and searching thrift stores for sinks (for him!) for his thesis exhibition.

The Pharmacy Museum was filled with antique gems from a time before I was even born. Living so fully in the present sometimes takes importance away from our rich history. My mind was a bit on overload during my visit because there was so much to see and learn. I walked around like a sponge soaking up everything about our past use of medicinal herbs from echinacea to poppies. It was interesting to read about what created the shift from this natural form of medicine to what we have today. People were not properly labeling their products and with the Pure Food and Drug Act of 1906 came a strict enforcement on labeling. Today with proper labels I am not sure that actually makes all the medicine we fill our bodies with safe in anyway.

Possibly the most interesting and 'close to home' thing I saw was a tool used to remove the tonsils. It had a blade that would cut the tonsil off and a small basket behind it to catch the tonsil for fear that one might choke or spread infection. It just so happens that I have had tonsillitis twice in the past year and yesterday evening after returning from my trip I started feeling 'sick in the throat' as I call it. I am all too familiar with that tingling in my throat to know what was coming on. So I rushed to the store for an echinacea tincture, garlic, ginger, honey, and lemon. I made myself up my 'sick in the throat' drink and for the first time I think I actually stopped the onset of tonsillitis. The past few times I knew what was happening but I was to late in my attempt to stop it and ended up at the ENT with antibiotics, something I really do not like.

Downtown New Orleans this museum is a must see even if you are not head over heals in love with herbal medicine (like I am!) It is worth a stop in if just to see the live leaches they have swimming around in one of the jars.

<--Special bottles that were placed in the front of the pharmacy to alert costumers to know it was a pharmacy.