So a few days ago, the whole internet was abuzz with people celebrating the 20th of April as Marijuana Day. Pictures and videos of people smoking seemed to be all over social networking sites. The origin of this seems to be pretty far-fetched and it seemed people had just been looking for a reason to celebrate smoking pot. I decided it was time to retell my weed story. Last time out, I probably didn’t give an apt description of what happened. The incident still remains crystal clear in my head. It’s one of those things you never forget. Every time I replay it in my head, it’s like I’m looking down on myself from a distant screen. One of the longest nights of my life.

Okay, I had heard other people talk about the effects of pot, about the bliss and skywalking feeling it brings. I was always wanted to try it and see what it felt like. The pressure to smoke marijuana was too damn high. I remember the first time I tried to buy from some dudes. It was in an uncompleted building at night. I walked through a dark alley and was directed to the spot by the fumes hanging in the air. There were about five guys just randomly standing and smoking. I walked up to one of the guys and managed to mutter, “Bros, I wan buy something.” The dude took a long puff from his blunt, looked at me in a funny way and replied in a gruff voice, “You gats chill. The guy never show.” That got me nervous because I didn’t want to stay longer than was necessary. I was afraid these guys were going to mob me or worse so I started pacing and fidgeting. The guy noticed my unease and asked me to calm down and even offered to share his own blunt with me but I refused. After what seemed like half an hour, the “guy” came and my “friend” managed to explain my ordeal to him. He proceeded to bring out a sachet of “the stuff” and I promptly paid and the deal was done. It turns out I was sold dried grass and rolling paper. My friends laughed at me and I was so embarrassed. I swore by every deity known to man I was going to get real weed next time.

Fast forward to a few months later when I was an intern, I met this guy, Larry (now my very good friend) and somehow the weed gist came up and he said he could get for me. Why I trusted him was that he lived close to the Fela Shrine and if there was anything that place is known for in Lagos, it’s the fact that they have awesome weed. So two days later, my man comes to me with two tiny brown bags containing the good stuff and told me to be very careful with it. “My head strong joor”, I told him as I stuffed the bags in my pockets. I couldn’t wait to get home. It was like the bags were burning a hole in my pockets. The rest of the day was a blur with my mind focused on the fact that I was gonna get high tonight. When it was time to leave, I raced out of the office and got home with alacrity. I stuffed the bags on my shelf and proceeded to sleep in anticipation for the big night. Of course, I couldn’t sleep and only stared at the ceiling with many thoughts. At around 9 pm, I decided my patience had run thin and decided to go for it. I opened the bags to find a sachet of weed and rolling paper. Now, I had practiced rolling plenty times and decided it wasn’t my thing so I decided the next best options was to cook it with noodles. I took one of the bags and emptied the contents into a pot and started cooking my noodles. I didn’t even wait for it to cook properly, I just stuffed it on a plate and ran to my room to watch the fun begin. I was watching a Two and a Half Men marathon and with juice, this was going to be the best meal ever.

Soon, the meal quickly disappeared and I started waiting for the effects. I was told that it would hit me like a bang in 10 minutes but I experienced nothing. I was beginning to think it was another scam, that I had been duped again but somehow, I forgot about it and continued my marathon. 45 minutes in and Jon Cryer and Charlie Sheen seemed to be the funniest men alive. I was laughing on my bed like a goat and I suddenly realised it had started. I was disappointed. I expected to see all shades of colour and everything was supposed to feel really good but all I felt was a slight headache and the urge to sleep. In retrospect, I think it would have been wise to have tried sleeping at that time. It would probably have saved me from the experience I was going to face. But I stubbornly refused to sleep and kept on watching my marathon until there was a power outage and I was forced to put off my laptop and sleep. My people, that was where the trouble started. Trying to lay my head on my pillow and it felt really hot. I turned the other side of the pillow and it was the same thing. Then I realised it was my head that was the problem so I headed to the shower for a quick bath. I turned on the shower and that was it. I zoned out for like 5 minutes with my hand still on the tap. When I suddenly realised what was going on, I stepped out and went to bed like that without bothering to dry off. If I thought that would solve it, I was in for a shocker. I tried to close my eyes to get some sleep but sound wouldn’t just let me. Everything was amplified, I could hear every single thing, I was like Daredevil. Even worse was the fact that I could hear sounds that I imagined in my head. The worst was when I clearly heard a classical choir playing. I could hear them as clearly as you would if you had front seats at a classical choir recital. I tried to close my ears to block out the sounds but it was all in vain. They weren’t leaving my head and my body started to get hot again. My neighbours had their generator on and the sound was ripping my brain hemispheres into shreds. With all these numerous emotions, I decided the only rational thing to do to clear my head was to go for a walk… Around past 2 am.

I stumbled out of bed and managed to find my way out of my room to the sitting room door. I unlocked the door, took the keys and went out. I got to the gate, unlocked it and I was in the streets. I was barefooted of course. I walked down the streets with my arms by my side like a zombie. I walked for what seemed like 10 minutes before I suddenly came to my senses and wondered what I was doing. Without a moment’s pause, I swung around and headed back from hence I came. Reversed the whole process and I was back in my room, panting and with dirty feet. I went for another shower again because my head was getting hot and I finally managed to look at the time. It was 2.45 am. After all that and it was still 2.45 am!!! Two things occurred to me at that moment, that it was going to be a very long night and that I was definitely going to run mad. I knew I had to tell someone what was going on so I sprinted to my phone and dialled who I thought was the right person to talk to at that point. I called a girl whom I had somehow broken her heart by saying some awful things. Surprisingly, she picked and sounded groggy on the phone. “Kimberly, I went and got high”, I managed to say. “Ehen!!! Are you the first person to get high?”, she replied. I was like, “You don’t understand. I am fucking high right now. I don’t even know why I’m calling you.” “Go and sort yourself out abeg” and with that, she ended the call.

I went in again for another shower before I realised that I had taken too many showers in one night. My bed and pillow were soaked and I needed to stop with the shower. The only thing that came to my burning head was to get buckets of water and line them up beside my bed and soak my hands and legs in them and that’s exactly what I did. But it was difficult to sleep that way so I ended up just doing it for one arm and one leg and hoping that it would spread to the rest of my body that way. What genius logic!!! Somehow, in the midst of all this chaos, I managed to fall asleep. I woke up with a heavy throbbing in my head and it felt like my eyes were on fire. One look at the time and I knew I wasn’t going to make it to the office. I managed to call in sick and asked for the day off. I was feeling too weak to move and the pangs of hunger were striking me with fury. Somehow, during the day, I managed to stumble out of bed and consume an entire loaf of bread. I dressed and decided to head to the office. The sun seemed to be extra hot and burning of bit of my flesh as I was walking. Somehow I ended up not going to my office but in Larry’s office. The gang of interns were there and as soon as Larry saw me, they all burst out laughing. I had not turned up for lunch so they knew something was up. “This guy!!! So you’re still alive”, Larry shouted. I just started laughing like an idiot too. Amidst all the laughter, I managed to narrate my ordeal which generated even more laughter. I ended up not going to my office but sleeping off in Larry’s office and by the time the day was over, I had sworn never to ever touch marijuana again in my life.

My relationship with marijuana is akin to the story in Job 41:8 where the Bible talked about touching the tail of the Leviathan. Lay your hands on him, think of the struggle and you will never do it again. I bit off way more than I could chew, flew too close to the sun and got burnt. Alas, I realise my head no strong at all. In the end, I’m never going to touch that stuff again. I threw away the other bag and ended my relationship with marijuana. I always look back to that night like it is something from a dream, sorry, a nightmare. It was the night where one tiny brown bag almost made me mad.

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