Wanna get high?

3 Mar, '07

Go to the Najibi Centre’s men’s bathroom.

It reeks of marijuana! I thought I was passing the Bulldog in Amsterdam the first time I noticed the smell, but just gave the occasion the benefit of the doubt and thought that the managers were trying out new Oud incense or something like that.. but I’ve just left there a little while ago and there is no mistaking it and no chance of giving anything any benefits…

pothead

Kids, pre- and early- teens loitering around the centre clearly rolling joints and sharing cubicles lets those doubts go up in smoke. Literally!

Ghetto kids they might want to look like, save for the designer bandannas and clothes, 3-month temporary tattoos. Loud, yes they are. But a bevy of them loitering in every corner and the toilets puffing away is a bit disconcerting. And the security guards don’t seem to mind at all. Heck, if I didn’t know any better I would assume that they provide them with the light!

Where the hell are their parents? Busy with their designer-clad soirées?

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Comments (43)

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  1. billT says:

    Ah the good old days of “smokin in the boys room”. Good thing you made it through the area without a contact high 🙂 Seriously though I thought that drug laws in your part of the world were very strict.

  2. jayjerome says:

    Welcome to the ‘new’ world…

    The downside to modernity is that the vices as well as the virtues are part of the package. They go hand-in-hand with the ‘good life.’ Sex & Drugs & Rock-n-Roll are the inevitable byproducts of a higher standard of living. Same thing happened in Rome, and in Victorian England, and here in the U.S. and industrial Europe in the 1960s — and when Russia opened up and became more liberal in the 1970s, same thing happened there. More freedom, more licentiousness (not necessarily a bad thing). Now it’s your turn …

    😎

  3. milter says:

    I’ve seen it happen in my own country. I saw it happening in Ireland and now, apparently it has come to Bahrain.

    jayjerome, you’re right. It cannot be stopped, it’s part of the parcel that follows freedom and development.

    And Mahmood is right. It puts a lot more responsibility on the shoulders of parents and other people that contribute towards making sure it doesn’t grow out of hand.

    I’m sure some people will try to fight it with dogmatic quotations of old scripts and threats of hell fire but, only a pragmatic approach will work.

    And, by the way, how did you recognize that smell, Mahmood? :whistle:

  4. tooners says:

    this is nothing. a friend of mine was telling me about how she took her daughter to this concert and ppl at the concert (here in bahrain) were handing out ecstacy tablets to ppl at the concert who just happened to be young kids or teenagers! not only that but they were also selling booze to everyone and most of the ppl there were teenagers.

    this was last year and my friend could hardly believe it. she said her daughter would no longer be going to any concerts in bahrain.

  5. Faisal says:

    3adey ;p

  6. dsa says:

    Yea tooners, sadly this is the case. Most parties that sell booze are said to be strictly 18+ yet MANY young teenagers are allowed in and the organizers of those parties know that those kids are coming but they don’t even try to do anything to stop it.

    And Mahmood, I’ve known a couple of guys who used to go home drunk or high and yes their parents did find out, but what did they do about it? Nothing, one of my friends was telling me how he went back drunk and his mom asked him are you drunk? he admitted that he was out drinking but she didn’t do anything about it (he was under 18 at that time) and now he still drinks/smokes pot.

  7. Barry says:

    Wow, that sounds just like a typical day on campus at the university. It also reminds me of a couple of weeks ago when I stepped outside and could smell marijuana smoke drifting over from the neighbor’s house.

  8. docspencer says:

    Mahmood, you are pulling my leg. You went there to buy a couple of joints. It makes you hungry and you enjoy food more that way I hear.

    Then you can really relax, sit in on your chair outside, rest your arms on your tummy, and enjoy the view of your garden with total peace of mind.

    And then you relax more, start snoring, your knees drift apart, and your tummy falls smack between them toward the ground. Bam!!! Hahahahaha!

    You have to admit, this would be a great scene for a short comedy that you could record and put on your blog!

    Vic

  9. What concerns me, as a parent of 2 children who used to live in the U.A.E., is that, smoking, and carrying perhaps just 1 joint, can lead you to pretty hefty jail time in some countries. I think experimental drugs comes with the terrirtory along with the usual teenage angst, but the ambiguities of the legal systems abroad and the possibilitiy of being jailed a la Brokedown Palace should produce at least some concealment of behavior. Flaunting it is just asking for problems. You can’t stop your kids from doing things they want to do, but you can warn them of the consequences.

  10. Mahmood, what is the punishment for possession of a joint in Bahrain?

    I ask because I once heard a rumor that it was very hefty, years in prison or something similar. (In Denmark it’s not as liberal as in Holland and would get you a fine – the risk of getting busted for using, however, is very low – not that I touch the stuff myself, of course, but I know people who do).

  11. mahmood says:

    And, by the way, how did you recognize that smell, Mahmood?

    The short answer is my annual pilgrimage to Amsterdam!

  12. hamad says:

    But it was hash right?? not actual weed was it?

  13. mahmood says:

    huh? whassadifference? me noknow.

  14. amal says:

    gross..

    legalize it.. then they wouldn’t be so obsessed with it..

  15. hamad says:

    You said you recoqnized the smell from Amsterdam, in which weed is very popular unlike Bahrain where it is very hard to get weed, if not impossible. Bahraini Potheads smoke hash instead which is a product of marijuana thats available to them.. and it has quite a different smell ….

    On another level, legalize it, maybe not in Bahrain but atleast in other parts of the world, where people have a culture and a society capable of handling this change, it does less harm to ur body and senses than alcohol anyway.

  16. mahmood says:

    Well I’m no expert at the intricacies of pot and its culture. But I can tell you that the smell is rather distinctive and it does remind me of the smells emanating from the Bulldog in Leitzplein or Smokies in Rambrandtplein, that’s for sure!

  17. Abu Arron says:

    So now there’s two types of Moroccan Black you can purchase in Bahrain. Free Trade indeed. :whistle:

  18. A learner of Arabic says:

    Somehow this reminds me of how people complain about drunk teens in the streets here in Finland. 🙁

  19. mahmood says:

    That might well be the case AloA. I’ve just never had it and never will I think so I wouldn’t appreciate it. Heck, I don’t even know the difference between all those kinds, although I’ve seen them displayed (and offered samples which I refused) in several places and parties in Amsterdam!

  20. mahmood says:

    Oh, I’m also informed today (unsubstantiated) that on average they find one dead body (teen) of an overdose victim in the same bathrooms almost every year.

    So the problem is much more than “recreational use”.

  21. milter says:

    If anybody is interested in catching the whiffs of exotic tobaccos I can suggest a stroll around the streets of Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen.

    For some reason I’ve never been there but, I’ve been told that the concept of “passive smoking” gets a somewhat different meaning in there.

    When I came to Bahrain in 1980 I thought, ignorant as I was, that the only thing the outside world associated with Denmark was dairy products and naked women but, I hadn’t been there long before one of my Bahrainy colleagues came up to me and said: “Hey, do you think you could get some hashish for me in Christiania when you go on your holidays?”

  22. Hamad says:

    This is exactly why i asked my question Mahmood, on average one person dead from an overdose per day?? overdose of what?! no marijuana was ever responsible for the death of a person… its physically impossible to overdose urself anyway! u smoke it not inject it. that must be another drug that causes the deaths.

    This is important to clarify because its wrong to link marijuana and its products to other A-class drugs like heroin and cocaine. which are from different worlds.

  23. MoClippa says:

    I’d like to see an independent research body established in Bahrain that analyzes where the money goes from hashish sales. My assumption is that while chems like X are imported by informal market “entrepreneurs,” money on drugs like Hashish and Heroin most likely go to more nefarious external actors, such as terrorist organizations or faulty government politicians.

    At least from what I’ve come to understand from the Hash market, most of it comes from confiscated products in Saudi Arabia as well as the secondary source from international sellers moving their product through the ports. But I’d like to see more independently minded public research done on the trade. This is warranted because consumption of both soft drugs (hash) and hard drugs (heroin and other chems) are wide spread amongst youth culture in Bahrain. I’d also like to see testing done on the actual products on the market. From my understanding soft drugs are usually laced or combined with materials that make them more dangerous to consumers, i.e. hash being padded with hena to increase size/weight/price as well as laced with chems to increase addiction rates.

    I’ve always been for liberalizing laws on soft drugs to protect both consumers and sellers, as well as to bring the problem out into the open, so that rehabilitation issues can be handled publicly without resort to humiliation of individuals, families or tribes because of their current status. As well as to stop the flow of “bad money” outwards, and to bring them into the realm of government regulation rather then judicial or police enforcement of policies against the symptoms. Drugs are socially prevelant, relative, scientific and independent research commissions need to be established to analyze better solutions to drug policy before the informal market continues to grow and people get hurt based on bad policy towards controlling their use and spread.

  24. I says:

    MoC,
    Nicely written. It would certainly be a bold move for the government to legalise soft drugs. However, I can’t see it happening, at least not in the near future. To admit that there is a drug problem is something the present bunch at the top seem unable to accept.
    They have enough trouble with booze. Even when said booze is bringing employment and money, not only into the country, but through tax, into the government coffers. There are certainly compelling arguments for the legalisation of soft drugs. Freeing up the police to ignore other offences might actually work :ermm:

  25. mahmood says:

    MoClippa that’s a very valid suggestion and hope that it will be taken up by the BCSR or other such organisations.

    Talking about “doctoring” products, you wouldn’t believe what goes into cocaine. I was shocked when I saw this video:

    I hope whoever takes this rubbish knows the kind of chemicals they are ingesting.

  26. mahmood says:

    Hamad, yes of course, those deaths I talked about are due to something other than soft drugs.

    I wonder if I can get statistics about drug use in Bahrain… Let’s see if I can get through to the CID.

  27. Abu Arron says:

    On the subject of secondary smoking, I spent a while working and living in the Carribean. Occasionally, if the weather was just too bad, my wife would insist that I take the local bus to work instead of using the motorbike.

    Picture this. I’m sitting on the bus in a suit on my way to work in the bank, surrounded by Rastas smoking the ol’ Jamaican Woodbine. By the time I got to the office, it could be a 45 minute journey +, I was severely wrecked. The local staff could always tell when I’d got the bus in as, I was told, my eyes almost pointed in different directions, my speech was somewhat strange (nothing new there) and I was so chilled I was almost horizontal.

    Sorta amusing, but it didn’t make for a productive day. Fortunately (?), the remainder of senior management were in pretty much the same condition. :dizzy:

  28. mahmood says:

    Brilliant! I can see the whole movie playing in my head! 😆

  29. Abu Arron says:

    It was a strange 13 months. I paid a fortune for the two kids to attend a private school and it wasn’t until we left that they passed on some of their school stories. It appeared that while my “angelic” children were sitting under the trees during lunchtime consuming the contents of their tupperware boxes, the mini locals were smoking the weed. There are worse stories, but not relevant to this thread.

    Each to their own, I suppose, but………..

  30. Will says:

    Has anyone ever heard a rational explanation for why it would be worse to have that cocaine being made in a lab by a scientist and sold in a pharmacy?

    The criminalization of narcotics is an asinine policy that has led to countless deaths and ruined lives. It probably fuels a huge portion of the criminal activity in the world as well as providing an excellent source of income for any would be tyrant.

    Narcotics production accounts for Billions $ of the world economy because it is illegal. At best it is a concept born of ignorance and fear. At worst it is an economic system of control and extortion. Talk to that guy in the jungle about free and fair trade.

    The kids are just following their instinct to explore and rebel. Smoking pot is most likely less harmful and addictive than smoking tobacco. The question is when are the rest of us going to stop living a fantasy.

  31. billT says:

    Will legalize it and it will still be worth Billions just to vultures like the pharmaceutical company’s. I’ve never bought into the marijuana leads to hard drugs theory so I defiantly support allowing someone to grow a couple plants for recreational or medical use but considering the number of people with addictive personalities legalizing opiate use doesn’t make much sense to me.

  32. mahmood says:

    I must say that I agree with Bill. I’m not even sure for even allowing people to grow it for recreational use. There are far too many people with addictive personalities and that situation will soon spiral out of control.

    But we should certainly evaluate the results of legalising its use in countries like Amsterdam and learn from their experience. I know it is hard to project that study on countries like ours for instance, as the culture is vastly different, but some sort of inference could be deduced.

  33. billT says:

    Mahmood your country should definatly evaluate other countries experiences but I’d much rather see your world and mine spiraling out of control over marajuana rather than radical politics.

  34. MZ says:

    Unbelievable. All the Americans want to know is where the money goes.. and how it must be going to terrorists. Quite frankly, most of us who despise the thought of violence find your attitude despicable in itself. What concerns most of us here is laws that affect use and possession of marijuana and its products.

    I am a pothead. I love to smoke. I am not ashamed of it and I don’t plan to quit. Unfortunately, I live in a country where it is a serious offense and so I do not indulge (neither do I know where to go to look for it anyway). I do tend to get my needs satisfied by the occasional trip to Amsterdam and.. believe it or not, Bahrain.

    I didn’t know anything about Hash or weed until I went to college. I then became a full-time pothead. Four years of non-stop smoking, honors and a bachelors degree. I can say the same for just about all my friends. I never got into other drugs. Not because I was a ‘good boy’. I simply didn’t care for them. I loved my weed though.

    Bahrain, as someone else has pointed out, rarely has weed on supply. The demand also is not too high. The reason is that the quantity, quality and price are all just not reasonable. Why pay BD 20 for a joint when I can get a hash piece that will roll me.. 10-15?

    Kids in Bahrain now are a lot more accustomed to hash and weed. You will find weed among high school students (as they come back from different countries and bring a little with them).

    I don’t think there’s anything wrong with marijuana and/or hash, the same way I don’t think there’s anything wrong with alcohol. If you want it, go for it. However, I do share the concern of a parent about the draconian laws here in the UAE and neighboring countries. Bahrain, on the other hand, appears to have reasonable laws for possession and use.

    Mahmood, please do not confuse hard-drugs with marijuana and hash. As someone pointed out, it is impossible to overdose on marijuana. In fact, even if you were able to, the only thing that can happen to you is that you would sleep.. very well I may add!

  35. mahmood says:

    MZ, thanks for that input. I am not the authority on this subject, I never did any kind of drugs so I would admit that my position is borne out of ignorance and broadcast stereotypes about drug use in general.

    On the plus side, I know now the difference between “weed” and “hash” and I will be able to brag to my friends on my next Amsterdam trip!

  36. billT says:

    Here on the big island we had green harvest copters flying weekly for years. In the paper they would announce that we eradicated 15,000 plants this week. The next week they would announce we eradicated 15,000 plants. The next week they would announce we eradicated 15,000 plants. The next week they would announce we eradicated 15,000 plants. This went on and on for years. Then someone from DC would announce we are winning the war on drugs and the next week they would announce we eradicated 15,000 plants. The next week they would announce we eradicated 15,000 plants. The next week they would announce we eradicated 15,000 plants. Total waste of money and resources that could have been used for better purposes.

    MZ I’ve smoked or been around people who do for more than 40 years. Legalization is the only smart course for government. I’m sorry to hear that you find our attitude about where the money goes despicable. I buried two friends from high school serving in Vietnam who OD on heroin grown and produced by Chinese war lords who were armed and supported at the time by the US government. Yeah I think its important to talk about where the money goes and who is responsible for kids deaths thru neglect or deliberate turning their back on poppy cultivation.

  37. AGA says:

    MZ, I beg to differ with you. Having had considerable experience, as a participant and as an observer, pot usage is not as innocuous in my opinion as a your comments suggest – at least as I read them. All of the “morning, noon, and nighters” that I knew while in college turned 4 year degrees into 5 year degrees, and while “honors” were earned, it is open to debate whether “high honors” or “highest honors” would have been in the picture had weed not been a significant part of it. When individuals earned the appellation “pot head,” it was not because their judgment or their performance of the tasks at hand was unimpaired.

  38. MZ says:

    billT, where the money goes is important. By no means do I intend to belittle the problem it creates. However, marijuana is hardly a way to make a quick buck (harder to transport, larger in size, etc.) I think cocaine, heroin, meth, pills, etc. are far more profitable for those looking to cash in and do whatever the hell they do with the money.

    AGA, you are right. Some people don’t do too well when they get into the habit of smoking pot. I’ve been around musicians who did nothing but smoke and play music. They probably didn’t do too well in school.. but, I’ve always surrounded myself with people who are driven. Smoking made me a calmer person. I’ve seen people who have completely destroyed their lives while getting high.

    The point I’m trying to make, though.. is that I don’t think pot was a main factor in this. If the person is lazy by nature, pot would automatically make him lazier. I don’t sympathize with people who sit on their ass doing nothing and then bitch about the world around them. Everyone should be responsible for their actions.

    The problem that Mahmood raises, however, is that when kids (young teenagers) start smoking and doing other types of drugs.. it could lead to disasters, since they are not half as responsible as they need to be.

    As for other effects, yes, the short term memory seems to be lacking a bit. That’s what I use my PDA for 🙂

  39. AGA says:

    MZ, I’d forgotten I made the comment until sufficient time had passed for my long term memory kick in. 🙂

  40. Will says:

    I think the bottom line is that the whole issue should be treated as a health problem and not a criminal one.

  41. jasra jedi says:

    the criminals are those that supply. not use.

  42. M says:

    Where the hell can u get weed or hash in Dubai… I mean there has to b some place… Im here for 2 months on vacation… and frankly… I love my weed… but its hard to think that there isnt anywhere here where i can find this kind of drug…

  43. Bahraini and proud says:

    HAHAHAHAH is it then one in SA’AR LOL spinies yeah hehehe heheheh eheheheheheh ehehehehe??? I used to live next to it hehehe and i used to get hi when i used to live there i’m older now and i quit hash now it has been 3 years it is out of my system heheh and everyone knows hehehe most my friends are policemen now lol hehehe those days hehehehehe i’ve seen it all i nver took anything but hash but i knew people who died because of drugs and it is not funny when some1 dies..

    these kids know nothing about life yet they just wanna get hi and live and a world of dreams most of them can’t even wipe thier own behinds lol really, i know because i was a kid till my father lost all his money some my friends died because of this stuff because they never learn. i learnt the hard way my father got bankrupt and i decide to stop saying DADDY GIVE ME MONEY i’m nearly getting married and even my wedding money i paid my own beside University and everything that i own and i’m only 23 now which makes me a MAN i guess..

    i think we should come hard at those who sell this crap to our kids….
    i think we should inform the police with every drug dealer that we know of… because this crap is killing our kids..

    my word to the kids…
    hey dude what’s up drop the joint it doesn’t make you look cool, when you smoke you act stupid and you loose most of your memory plus it ruins your lungs… why don’t you wait till you 21 and then you can a couple of pints everythursday… like i do :biggrin: …… :whistle: ..

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