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The Cocaine I Had in Medellín

This post is about drugs and travel and living by the “when in Rome” mantra. But it wasn’t Rome – it was Medellin, and after some hard dancing, a few hard pulls from the weed pen someone smuggled into the country, and too many Caipirinhas, I found myself on the on a cushioned bench with a German traveler in a sun dress with pockets, one holding a bag of coke she bought from who she believed to be a reputable supplier. “You want some, “ she asked with the coolness that comes when asking a friend if they want juice or a yellow starburst or the second to last chicken wing. “Of course,” I responded, smiling like the Cheshire Cat. It’s wild how many Germans I’ve done cocaine with over the years. Thank you, Coachella and Berlin and Amsterdam Hostels.

She pulls out a key. Left nostril, right nostril, left nostril one more time.

You remember that scene from Blow when Peewee Herman does the line and his face lights up with joy and amazement? Yeah, that was me, wondering why I could no longer feel he inside of my nose while simultaneously feeling like the world was now mine. In short, the cocaine was amazing.

While I’m not advocating the use of cocaine, I am saying “if you wanna do it, do it.” Be careful, of course, and use it responsibly. Yes, there are ways to use cocaine responsibly. And there are safe ways to get it.

Getting Cocaine in Medellin: It’s not illegal to have a gram of cocaine, but it is illegal to buy or sell it. Not to worry, the reputable people who offer it to you will give it as a gift if you buy the cigarette or beer they’re attempting to sell you. Or whatever clever way they’ll come up with to make sure you don’t actually buy the drug. And you’ll find these folks everywhere. Every…where.

Let’s Go One Step Forward: There are cocaine tours (some affectionately known as the “Pablo Escobar Tour”) you can find if you’re brave enough to ask your concierge or hostel front desk person. While Netflix has chosen to glorify the country’s most infamous criminal, there are many many many of his countrymen who try hard to forget him and his evil doings. Be sensitive to that. I recommend finding one that will give you the skinny on all the good and all the bad that’s happened in the city. The history of the Medellin is rough, having been the murder capital of the world at one point, but the present and future is beautiful.

Things To Do While High:
1. Listen to my When Writing or Drinking Whiskey Playlist or your own mellow playlist full of London Grammar and Tom Rosenthal.
2. Have an amazing conversation with the person closest to you, especially if they’re high, too.
3. Write letters to the folks at home you miss, but haven’t spoken to because of ego.
4. Meditate.
5. Relax and mellow out.
6. Find a beautiful place in nature and stare at the beauty (see: featured image).

Darnell Lamont Walker, a self-professed traveling foodie, has been found sitting at tables eating baby goat sweetbreads, drinking tequila, and laughing loudly with strangers. The writer, filmmaker, artist, and sometimes photographer puts happiness above all.