The China Adventures of Arielle Gabriel

The Canada Adventures of Arielle Gabriel

British Columbia Marijuana Overload

Horizontal Divider 3

Unlike my younger brother and sister, I did not encounter drugs in my high school days in Richmond, British Columbia - a then leafy suburb of Vancouver.

It was during my first year of University of British Columbia, that I saw marijuana cigarettes beingpassed around a large circle of fellow students.  We were downtown somewhere in a large darkened room, like a studio with no art equipment, and the soft drone of Leonard Cohen's first album played in the background.

I was surprised more than shocked, and pretended to puff as the cigarette made its rounds betwen a couple of dozen eighteen years olds.

Hashish and also mescaline were also popular that yeat with my freshmen friends. The mescaline came in tablets on sheets, as did LSD. All of this was called Soft Drugs, compared with heroin, which was definitely a Hard Drug.

I had been raised to associate Heroin with a totally low class and dangerou way of life, foreign to most Canadians, escept those who wanted to commit a long slow suicide. The line that my fellow students created between Soft and Hard Drugs was to later blur at times.

My asthma protected me from taking much of a personal interest in either marijuana or its stronger relative, hashish.

However, British Columbia was one of the strongest areas in the world for Marijuana Culture, an oxymoron as far as I was concerned.  Marijuana Culture just meant a mild climate for growing marijuana, and a huge percentage of young people who tried it in their students days.

Once, marijuana had been legal, as no one knew that it was desirable as an opiate: growing wild in nature, like coffee, tea, or cocoa plants.  By corralling it off, and making it seem dangerous, there were large economic profits to be obtained.

I could see through all this, and it did not really interest me too much.  I preferred coffee in the morning, throughout the day, and sometimes red wine during during the evening. Still, I had not shortage of close friends who frequented the culture well.

We heard stories of what happened when other young people were busted by the police for marijuana, and these stories spread like wildfire. One notorious story involved a Narcotics Agent called Stedanko, and the accidental pushing of a pregnant hippie girl down a flight of steps, causing her to lose the baby.

Another high school friend of mine miscarried her baby, a few weeks after the RCMP invaded her Richmond blueberry farm, looking for a cache of marijuana.  The drugs were buried in large metal boxes a few hundred yards out into the blueberry plants lining the backyard.

But my best friend, Barbara, who like myself, did not realy use drugs, suffered the greatest injury.  Her boyfriend John was a former heroin addict, and on strictu methadone treatment therapy, when she met and fell in love with him.

They lived in a handsome and spacious two bedroom apartment around 12th and Granville Street, when I was still attending classes at University of British Columbia.  I liked visiting Barbara there, as we lunch frequently at a restaurant that served Eastern European food like pyrogis with sour cream and cheese blintzes dotted with blobs of jam.

One night Barbara heard noises in the hallway, waiting for John to come home.  She went into the darkened hallway, thinking it was her boyfriend, only to be struck to repeatedly with ah sharp blade from behind.  She managed to crawl towards a land phone, and was soon in intensive care in the Vancouver General Hospital.

I was in England at the time, visiting relatives, and could not believe this had happened to my best friend. She almost died.

We were just two young, pretty, middle class girls, who took an interest in conventional pursuits: fashion, music, boyfriends.

Yet the safer geography that we had been born into in Canada slowly transmuted over the decades into something more dangerous.

Horizontal Divider 3

Lamma Island * Lantau Island * Cheung Chau Island
Hong Kong * Mui Wo * Peng Chau Island
Tung Chung * Shenzhen * Nanning * Hunan Province
Bobcaygeon * Pointe Claire * Montreal
Peterborough * Lake Sturgeon * Ontario
Vancouver * Richmond * British Columbia

Flag Counter

Join My Linked In, 25,000 Friends

Facebook @ArielleGabriel555

The International Paper Doll Society

The China Adventures Of Arielle Gabriel

Bobcaygeon, Mui Wo, Lantau, Tung Chung
Big Buddha, Arielle Gabriel, free paper dolls, 
Pui O, Chep Lap Kok, Tai O, Quan Yin5,
Cheung Chau, Lamma, Peng Chau,
Yung Shue Wan, Montreal, Vancouver,
Hong Kong, Shenzhen, China,
caul, veil, born with a caul