My first efforts.
Getting into “bud” is a most circuitous trail: dubious legality mixed with big cash money. Consequently, no one speaks unless you have cash and they’re sure you won’t turn them in. My first problems: I look a lot like an FBI agent in farmer’s disguise, I am direct. “I just want some good bud cream for my hands.” I started with my friends which got me only looks of disdain or soft whispers.
In frustration I tried an illegal clinic in the neighboring town — the one with huge bright yellow signs — the same one the police kept regularly shutting down, only to reappear the next day. Go figure, can’t hurt. Wrong! My direct and honest approach got me a silent, hostile reception, an obvious outsider in the wrong place. My friends, the ones who wouldn’t give me advice, said “Did you really go in THERE?”
Next, I tried the local “hemp consulting clinic” which is next door to a hydroponic growing supplier with all kinds of green marijuana leaves on display. First new information: if you have a permit, you can use the word “marijuana,” and people talk to you about drugs. With no permit, it’s called “hemp” and you can grow rope.
In the clinic I found three kinds of people: a receptionist who gave me piles of useless information on cheap paper, a “counselor” who had a tick in one eye and kept nodding “outside,” and three separate glass-partitioned, dark and messy rooms where I was told doctors would write me a prescription for $200 cash. Wow, here was I, a decent guy, among people who were either nodding and winking, or with doctors whom I wouldn’t trust with a band-aid; so I left again. The “nodding counselor” met me in the parking lot, and offered me his card with picture of a little teddy bear. Strange and getting stranger.
Finally I turned to one very bright young friend who, in addition to being a probable recreational user, was well-informed and well-connected. “Where do I get some, what does it cost, and how do I try it safely?” She had a friend/nurse who might be willing to talk to me, confidentially, of course. A few days later I had her friend’s number and advice: find a supplier of good reputation and start slowly, little bits at a time; and don’t start by eating a “cookie,” look on the Internet.” I had never been warned about eating cookies but I felt little risk in looking on the Net. Perhaps there I could find that illusive supplier of good reputation.
Three weeks on. I am feeling like this might not be such a good idea.