When I first moved to my new neighbourhood I could never imagine that I could enjoy such a relaxing place for enjoying my secret and only vice. After months of depending on very unreliable third parties to get my marihuana and being very scared of going to score by myself, someone told me of this place not far from where I lived. The place was convenient, not only for its location, but also because it was open seven days a week including bank holidays. At the beginning the thought of finally assuming that indeed I liked marijuana and that I was ready to take the risk of going into the underworld to buy my weekly treat made feel nervous and somehow opened my eyes to a new reality. What would happen if I got caught? How would I have to behave once in the drug place? Would the dealers notice that I was insecure? Was I beginning my road to perdition?
The place was a fantasy, there in the middle of the street, accessible to everybody it reminded me of Amsterdam and it certainly looked safer than other places I had heard of. At first I doubted if I should go in, what if the police was following me? What if the dealers wanted to cheat me? Then I thought of my friend and I realised that if she had been using that place for such a long time there should be a sort of unsubscribed customer satisfaction policy. Finally, I went in and I realised that I had crossed the border of my fears and that I was ready to take full responsibility of my actions. I will never forget the first impression of that place because it was there when I learned that joints like these did not only exist in detective stories. All that was missing was the soundtrack, I thought, at the same time that I walked toward the hatch from where dealers were selling the dope. Did I need to say a secret word or would a knock suffice?
The place was friendly and quiet. The other consumers in the queue seemed to be normal people like me and although the persons dispatching the grass had an attitude and sounded like the tough guys one sees in the movies they maintained a very professional approach: All I had to do was to state the amount of money I wanted and they would give me the quantity. Ignoring if the quality was good or bad I began to feel more independent from occasional dealers I had met at university and also from other occasional acquaintances with which I had nothing in common apart from the taste of marijuana. My new acquired independence allowed me to decide when I wanted to smoke and also to organise my social life a little bit better. Saturdays became the days in which I had people around and while getting stoned we discussed the past, present and future of our lives.
Although I had been going there for a while it took me some time to realise what the dealer meant whenever he asked me what I wanted. My answer was comically the same: “I want ten pounds” until one day the guy asked “ten pounds of what?” Ignoring what to say, I replayed that I wanted the usual stuff, and the leader losing his nerve told me “and what is the usual? Grass or skunk?” For a moment I did not know what to say, I have heard that skunk was stronger than marijuana but also more harmful and in a way I felt tempted to try it. And so I did. After the experience I decided not to try it again while a doubt emerged in my head. Had I been smoking these two substances indistinctly without knowing? My concern might sound unreal but it was only when I went back to score marihuana again that I noticed not only the physical differences between the two but also their effects.
I have a good memory of those sessions and the people who used to visit me, and those that are still coming around. Very good life projects were discussed and forged in my living room. Wedding plans, career moves, sentimental problems, political discussions, video marathons of classic films all floated around in the healthy and relaxing companion of my marijuana and my friends. I introduced people to the pleasure of smoking and so far I have never regretted because I believe that everybody should be entitled to some self-indulgence, and in my case, after years of complying with the rules I decided to challenge the power that oppresses us all. Not claiming to be an expert in drugs, my only real experience is with marijuana, I can say that such drug helped me to understand better my sexuality and also to get rid of all the moral taboos attached to it. Thanks to marihuana I discovered carnal pleasure and I was able to express forbidden feelings that now I contemplate as normal.