"Good to be back! I’m gonna start with the earliest memories I have concerning weed. For that, I have to go back to the mid-60 ties. As a kid, I used to hang around at the center of my town, where back in the days, the youth hung out. Mostly long haired, hippies, who sat on the street, where they held conversations, playing acoustic guitars, and they mixed some green herb with their shag.
In my eyes, they were a bit of outlaws, for the village was mostly a very puritanical place, where everything out of the ordinary was looked down on. And I liked them. I found them so cool, that peace and love generation, that I definitely wanted 2 things when I was grown up. I wanted to grow long hair, and I also wanted to smoke that green herb! Well, those two things I for sure did! "
Chapter 1: The first time
The first time I was introduced to DA WEE, was by a cousin of me. I must have been 16 years old. I saw him on a weekend, and he asked me to come with him. He had a car and I sat next to him in the front, where he opened the glove box and took out a bag with lovely smelling weed! It must’ve been at least 250 grams!
He was an undercover cop in the big city, and he told me, that, on one of his night patrols, he caught a dealer. He made a deal with that dealer (lol) and said: ok, for this time I’m just going to confiscate your drugs and will only give you a warning, but let it be clear that the next time I will have you arrested. The dealer was pleased, he said, and he promised to never do it again.
My cousin never reported it, and kept the weed for himself! It was African weed, probably Nigerian, which was one of the most common at the time. Later I discovered more available weeds from Africa like Durban poison, Swasi and Rooibaard. Every time I saw my cousin on the weekend, I asked him if he still had weed, and if so, we went to his car and got high.
Chapter 2: Cops ain't that bad
At the time, there were no coffee shops yet. The only place where you could buy weed or hash was at a dealer. There were house dealers in some busy discos and bars. That way the owner of the place didn’t risk losing his license for illegal activities, he just blamed the dealer and had “nothing to do with it”‘. But of course, they had a piece of the pie. When I wanted to smoke, I knew a bouncer, he sold only 2 kinds, Moroccan hash, wrapped in aluminum foil. A slice of 5 gram was 25 guilders at the time ($12) and he had weed, mostly African, also 5 grams for 25,-, which always had seeds and sticks.
Furthermore, you could buy hash and weed on the street, but it was mostly sold by hard drug dealers who were addicted themselves. One night Rene, a friend of me and I bought something on the street, that area was infamous for its crime, prostitution, junkies, and a normal person would not go there, especially at that time of the day. But ok, we bought some, and while we were hanging out on a porch trying to smoke a joint, the undercover cops suddenly showed up and arrested us. It was a rainy night, we didn’t think, why was it so quiet actually, normally there were much more people around, little did we know that the city had a crackdown on dealers and junkies, so they were rounding them up.
Because we looked suspicious, they thought we were using hard drugs there, and maybe shooting up there, they arrested us! Well, at the police station they searched us and of course they didn’t find more than a bit of weed. Obviously, we didn’t look like junkies, and after they found out that we just wanted some soft drugs, they let us go.
It wasn’t long after that the first coffee shop was opened, which was actually also a bar. The place was called The Scene and was in the heart of the city center. Here’s where I met people who, in my opinion, had a different view on life. Instead of getting stupid drunk, they had conversations, debates, idealistic thoughts. They were quite more interesting. So, I became a frequent visitor there. Furthermore, they had a steady supply of a few different kinds of weed and hash. Which was so cool.
Chapter 3: Hash oil Ziggy
During that time, I made more and more friends who were smoking weed. More places opened that started to sell all kinds of weed and hashish. We had fun days that we went to the beach, at nights, where we took food and drinks and our pipes with us. We made bonfires and one day when the sun rose, I found out we were actually at a nudist beach! First time for me, I was feeling a bit awkward, mostly older people, laying butt naked in the sun. Little could we do then to join them? Later in the day we ended up playing bongo and guitar in a restaurant at that beach, all naked, to collect some money to buy food. The great fun for all the other nudists, of course, and we got free food from the owner.
I was living with somebody who claimed to be one of the twins playing in the famous Dutch band Earth and Fire. We used to have parties at his place a lot. One day, someone named Fred, came back from Morocco with a suitcase full of hash and a liter of hash oil. He sold all the hash and oil but kept some of the oil for himself. He asked if he could stay with us in exchange for a small bottle of that oil. So, I got a hold of that bottle of hash oil, must have been worth a thousand dollars at that time, and all that you had to do was spread a little over a cigarette, it burned up while smoking and made you high as a monkey!
One day, I asked 13 friends to come over because I wanted to make hash food for them using the hash oil. I made a huge amount of fried rice and mixed 1 spoon of that oil through it. The party lasted 3 days, peeps were sleeping everywhere, stoned from the food, and it felt like it lasted forever to ease. Very well remember, afterward, that going to the toilet to poo took ages, for it was like chewing gum that got stuck, LoL.
Chapter 4: Baptism
So, I met more and more people in the first coffee shop in Rotterdam. We smoked, got high and started conversations like Socrates and Plato style, a entirely different world.
We had a plan to go on a trip, hitchhiking, to the South of France. The night before we intended to leave, we met two crazy older women, one of them had a husband who was a dealer, she said. They asked if we wanted to come to their place for a smoke, and we agreed. On the table were at least three big plates of hashes. I had never seen that much hash before. We could smoke what we wanted, so we did our best. Then all of a sudden, the dealers' wife came into the room and started to freak out, pulling out a big gun and addressed me to go sit on the table, where all that hash was laying. I thought she was going to shoot me, and she kept on rolling joints, until the morning when she finally fell asleep herself, on which we quickly disappeared!
Well, the next day we went hitchhiking and arriving in Paris, we were looking for other travelers, I think they hung at place in Pigalle. We made some friends, smoked some, and after a few days we decided to go more south. Jan, a friend I was with, had the stash with him, and it was one day that we were given a ride by some Jehovah witnesses or so. They said their car didn’t drive good, coming all the way from Paris, and when it started to drive normal again, there were we standing on the side of the road with our thumbs up. They thought that it was an act of God, so they stopped and gave us a lift.
They asked us where we were going to, and we said just to the beach, but then they asked us if we wanted to stay with them, for free! We agreed and put up our tent in their garden. They asked us to join them for supper and we had a great time. What’s not so great, that at night, we wanted to smoke some and Jan couldn’t find his stash anymore! We thought OMG, what if it dropped in the car! They would be very disappointed and send us out. Jan had, of course, this big wooden cross around his neck, and acted as if he also was religious. He actually said his name was Jean-Claude de Baptiste.
Luckily, nothing happened, so seemingly they did not find our stash. We stayed for a week or so, it was near the beach in a place close to Nice.
Chapter 5: Still in France (1981)
After a while, we decided to get on with our trip. We hitched to Cannes, I had a few crazy experiences there that I’d like to share, although out of dope and almost out of $, we bought some beer, the cheapest there was to get us going. We sat up our tent late at night on the beach, a nice and cool place. Until the next morning, when I got woken up. Someone had opened the zipper of my tent, and was pinching my toes. I looked up and saw 2 cops. Those funny hats of them, Louis de Funès style. They told me that it was not allowed to put a tent up there, and if we would like to move.
I said okay, but the first thing I did was get out of my tent, making head rolls and then ran to the water to take a bath, in the sea. To my surprise, I heard a lot of clapping and cheering behind me. Little did I know that I put up my tent next to the place where the yearly film festival of Cannes took place! The crowd that was waiting to enter, watched the whole scene and must have been thinking that it was funny! Maybe it looked like a small movie itself. Live action! Awed by the support, I wasn’t afraid of the cops anymore, and they let us go. We went to search for another place, found a spot in a park, and as if the devil were involved, that night, a horrible thunderstorm broke down. We packed up, and went to the city, where we went into an apartment block. Went down the stairs, took out our sleeping bags and spent the night there.
The next morning when I woke up, I saw someone who stared at me for a moment, turned around, and came back with a rifle in his hands, aiming at me, with a mean German Shepard on a leash with him, barking aggressively! He held us under siege until the cops came, who arrested us, and took us to the police station. They searched everything, and OMG, was I glad that Jan had lost his dope.
They asked what we were doing there, down in the cellar, all in French, of course. Luckily, my mate could speak better French than me at that time, he explained 'Che est l orage'. We were scared to get hit by lightning and took refuge there. Thankfully they understood, and asked us to leave town, to which we agreed. Oh, by the way, they took us in a police van and dropped us 20 km out of town, haha. Then we decided to go back to Holland. We took the night train from there, and naughty as we were, we went inside an empty special cabin with 4 beds, 2 bunk beds left and right, and fell asleep. Not for long, a loud knocking woke us up. We didn’t open, but after a while it was forcefully opened and a conductor asked for our tickets, which of course we didn’t have. A furious family with kids were waiting, we took their place, sorry.
Then we laid ourselves down in the hallway, between the many people who were sleeping there, mostly soldiers going back to camp, for it was a Sunday.
We made it as far as near Lyon, where we finally got kicked off the train.
Chapter 6: Dopey in Tricot
So, there I was, kicked out of the train, hungry and still wanting to go back home to Holland. Broke, so we had only one choice, hitchhiking back. Standing for hours, no one seemed to care, but then finally, an old Renault stopped. There were 2 guys inside who asked us where we wanted to go. Nearest to Holland, we said. They laughed, took us in, and asked us to spend the night with them. Okay, sure. One tall Moroccan guy and a small French one, offered us to stay for the night. We came to a small place, called Tricot, where they had a cute little French house. They started to make some food from flour and water, making some breads on or in the stove, and we ate that with honey. If we liked to smoke? Hmmmm, sure, but where did they get the dope from? The Moroccan guy turned out to be a dealer! They produced a big plate of hash, and wow, off we went. Guess what, we didn’t sleep, but smoked all night! Until we finally dropped.
The next day, same thing, cooking, eating, smoking! Wow, went on and on, they were dealing shit in that area, and we were lucky to end up with them. Occasionally, they got called away, leaving us alone, trust between smoking bros, hey! That funny Moroccan guy, he had great ideas on how to build his homemade from an airplane, complete with 100 s of drawings he made. He got very excited whenever he was stoned and kept on explaining how he would make it possible. I simply let him talk and, yes, hmm, this and that, uhm, but, No but, it was possible in his opinion.
Still not growing myself yet….Just hold on!
Chapter 7: My Master Kush
Skip the trip through the Middle East, and Africa. I came back to Holland and wanted to find out more about growing. I started off with bag seeds, they call them nowadays? Just seeds that we didn’t smoke, but planted them in pots. The first ones were ridiculously small, I harvested them and hung m upside down in the toilet, and after dried, picked some of it and smoked it. Didn’t even know the difference between male and female flowers, sometimes got just tired, sometimes high.
I met someone, who had skunk seeds growing indoors under lights. He invited me to show his set-up. He gave me a smoke of his products and men, never got that high! At least not for a couple of years. I thought it must be that fertilizer, or something, I couldn’t get up for an hour or two. Definitely, I was going to do the same.
So, I convinced my wife to make space in a storage room. I hung up my first light. I got hold of a Kush plant, results were wonderful. 250 grams of dried herb! Sold my first indoor crop and invested directly in another light. That went on and on until I had no more space left and then persuaded friends and within no time I had a 100 lights working!
Chapter 8: My first coffee shop
It was around 1990 that I met someone who had a boat and was running low on cash. He asked me if I would take over the place, it was a houseboat, like you see a lot of in the center of Amsterdam. It was located in a famous canal called ‘Oude Schans’. For a bargain, I took over his rent. He ran an illegal hotel on it. The only thing that was a bit decent looking was the cabin.
For the rest, he had placed a bed in the hold of the ship, with smelly mattresses, it was actually a horrible place. I had some customers, mostly backpackers, and then I had an idea! I was going to make a coffee shop out of it. I cut the down under in half, had a makeshift bar/desk, put some tables and chairs inside and hung up a sign with COFFEESHOP on it. I made a menu in a kind of business card holder book, with some weed and hash.
Now, since I was already selling my skunk to other coffee shop owners, I made some good connections to buy wholesale hash and other weed. Because I was producing myself, I could sell my weed at double the price! Rapidly, the word spread, here you could buy 2-1/2 grams for 25.00 guilders, So I had more and more customers. From all over the world they came and famous peeps like the singer of XTC, Red Hot Chili Peppers and Theresa Teng (known by all Chinese), became my friends. Moreover, I met some remarkable people, like the son of a famous American Indian, a witch doctor from Hawaii, a native spiritual leader.
Numerous people sent me seeds, that’s how I got let’s say, for instance, the famous Hawaii seeds from someone, the one I hybridized to make Hawaii Maui Waui. I also got seeds sent over from Brazil, I remember it were a sweet smelling but very fluffy kind.
In the front of the ship, I had a small secret grow place and that was fun because the heat and smell of my growth place went up to the place where the customers were sitting on the deck and smoking, so the cops must have been thinking, that’s just from the people smoking, lol.
Chapter 9: T-boat
That’s how I called it. I was making too much money to receive social benefits from the government any longer, so I registered my first company. Surprise, the boat belonged to the president of the Hells Angels, who also had a coffee shop, called the Other Place. We became good friends. Business was good and fun.
In the T-Boat business was booming. I had to hire staff, installed espresso and coffee machines plus a fridge with drinks. I upgraded the deck to become a hang-out. There was a hammock between the masts and I rented the place out for private parties. There was a set-up in mid-ship, with a drum kit, keyboards and guitars. And a pirate flag flying high. There was a small window at the waterside, where even boats anchored, and ordered their smokes, oh yeah.
I remember once, I went to one of my coffee shop owner friends to buy a kilo of Afghan hash. Walking back through one of the busiest streets in Amsterdam, I had stocked the slab between the belt of my trousers. Suddenly, one of the heels of my boots fell off! And right in front of me were a couple of cops giving directions to some tourists! I just kept on walking, step-clock, step-clock! They looked at me and all started laughing, and I was like, ooh shit, just keep walking, act normal! pffff.
Chapter 10: Floating body
More stories about the boot, or T boat. The pirate flag flying high, I hung up a hammock between the masts, to the great satisfaction of the students which I found sunbathing and ‘studying ‘ at the same time. I remember a cute young student girl as I came aboard. Approaching her and telling her: I am your captain, at your service!
There was a small window on the canal side, and wow, sailboats and small vessels stopped and moored near it, knocking on the window. If they could have the ‘menu’, so they could order their smokables! As if it were business as usual. I started to sell seeds as well there for the first time. My menu wasn’t that big yet, but it was a start. Every so often, the whole boat was used to celebrate students' graduations. That were private parties, on which I could sell alcohol and be open all night, selling tons of dope and drinks on a night like that. Meanwhile, the tour canal boats were advertising too, I could hear them over the loudspeakers talking about my boat, and customers would demand ‘Slow down, we want to take pictures!’
One morning I found a human hand floating on the side. I called the cops, but when they arrived it had already floated away. They took me to the police station for questioning, what, why and how and this went on for hours! I got mad and said I have to run a business, next time I see a dead body I won’t even call you idiots!
Chapter 11: Seed hunt, India
First thing, when I landed in New Delhi, I had to change my dollars to rupees. They gave me such a pile of Rupee notes stapled together that I had a bag full! My goodness, didn’t know where to put it, in my bag? It didn't fit. Hell. Then, coming out of the airport, 300 Indians screaming, offering me taxi service. I didn’t know what to do, so I took the first one. Bloody hell, that taxi was 30 years old. The driver asked me where I wanted to go….Pahar Ganj. Ok baba, said the driver with a toothless smile and we took off.
Did he watch the road? No! Looking the whole time over his shoulder at me, asking If I want ganja? Smokey? BOM BOM BABA? No, no, just watch the road! Just bring me to my hotel. No clutch, screeching engine, booo, had a feeling the car could break down any minute. Scary driving, Sir, but I made it. Had a cheap room for 300 rupees with just a fan and a shared shower.
When walking around in the hotel, I met some Australian guys, 4 of them. One had a Delhi belly, the rest were smoking big fat joints as if it was legal. I was looking for some business for my smart shop as well, and met someone from Kashmir. Of course, I asked him for the famous smoke from his place so, he sold me a 50 gram ball of Kashmir hash, molded (in the winter they put them underground which gives it a layer of mold, when smoking it, it’s like opium). Very hard to find these days, and what do you know, I found a seed in it which I took to Holland and it sprouted! I was the happiest man in the world.
(Only holy men are legally allowed to smoke ganja in India, and before they light up their chillum they always shout: BOM SHIVA. The chillum is made from clay from the river Ganga, resembling the earth, and the body of Shiva. The smoke of the spirit and getting high is like being close to the Gods)
Chapter 12: Searching for my Guru
I was traveling through India searching for my guru, which I never found. In search for new strains. Meanwhile, I had the first smart and art shop in Amsterdam. They even came over from the city hall to collect information to store in their files. Took pictures and samples from me with magic mushrooms, for their archives, haha.
I was also trying to find items in India which I could sell in Holland. This is how I met a Kashmiri guy who invited me to his place. I bought loads of Indian items, and also I bought a ball of molded Kashmir. The Kashmiri put the hash underground with a frost and take it out after a few weeks, which gives it a layer of mold. Smoking that stuff is like WOW, Trippy effects.
I took the ball with me on my travels to Dharamshala and hid it in a wrap of incense. One day, sitting on the roof of a bus traveling through the Himalayas, we got stopped by traffic police.
The driver had no license! I quickly got off the bus and jumped on the back of the first passing truck, and made it safe to a hotel. My trip was coming to an end, so I sent the dope to Amsterdam. Which was not easy!
I bought some more items plus a box to hide it in, and went to the post office, pretty nervous. There they told me that I had to have it packed the ‘official‘ way. Meaning, in a special cardboard box, sealed with lacquer plus stamps. They had to do the packaging in a special office, and dripped red lacquer on every corner, and pressed a coin in as a seal.
They were busy for hours, and meanwhile I had lunch across the road. I had some soup. When I complained about the dirty table, they came with a dirty cloth. After they ‘cleaned’ my table, they used the same cloth for the floor! I was just hoping I would not get sick from this place. After the soup, I went back to the post office. And then they told me they did not have enough stamps to send my box to Amsterdam! Man, I almost exploded! I wanted to speak to the manager and looked for him. Even behind the counter. But he was gone.
So, I had to carry that box with me for the last days back to New Delhi, where I could finally mail it. The package made it, by the way. I sold half of it, which paid for my entire trip!6