Over my summer vacation, I'll be taking a trip to Chicago to see my mother and to go to a Cubs' game at Wrigley. I'm thinking of continuing out to Colorado to visit a couple of Facebook friends and to buy 420 legal at a store! What a trip! as the hippies used to say.
My mother will turn 90 this fall. She recently fell and broke some bones in her hand, but in her inimitable fashion, she didn't tell anybody. Why? She didn't want my sister to win out in her campaign to stop Mom from driving. The injuries didn't heal over a couple of weeks, so Mom ultimately had to give in, ask my sister for a ride, and go to the hospital for treatment.
One of my friends in Colorado is a custom woodworker and ex-heavy metal guitar player. He produces beautiful furniture, among other things. Meetings on Facebook always start, of course, with political discussions. This guy is both conservative and religious. Amusingly, he's an opponent of legal pot.
My other Facebook friend is a former Microsoft programmer who is going to school now to become an accountant. Quite a transition, eh? The programming biz, which was the factory work of my generation, is no longer a reliable source of employment. Microsoft has been using the H-1B visa program to import cheap foreign programmers for years. This friend's politics are liberal in a lot of respects, but he likes guns. He's a grumpy old guy, so we have something in common there. He's also a non-smoker with a dim view of legalization.
Woodstock friends (one a retired school teacher) have been flying out to Colorado to buy their 420. High quality weed is selling for as little as $100 an ounce in Denver. That is the price of a quarter ounce of black market weed in New York. So, it is possible to take the trip out to Colorado, buy your weed and return home with better product with little difference in price once you factor in the plane ticket.
My retired school teacher friend says that he doesn't even get frisked for weed at Denver airport and, of course, walks right off the plane in Albany and gets into his car without incident. Possession of up to an ounce is a traffic ticket offense in New York State that costs you a $100 fine.
Out of state weed tourists can buy only 1/4 ounce per transaction at a legal 420 store. I'm thinking of visiting Breckenridge Cannabis Club, the subject of an excellent documentary, High Profits. Breckenridge is a trendy ski resort town. The documentary follows the owner of the Cannabis Club as he navigates his way through the early days of legalization.
Bringing pot home on my road trip might not be a good idea. Purchases in Colorado are a matter of public record, so I wouldn't be surprised if the cops are sharing information from state to state and routinely searching cars leaving the state if their databases show a recent weed purchase.
All this for the thrill of walking into a legit store and buying weed that you know is high quality with assured weights and measures! Maybe I'll do it, maybe I won't. I stopped buying weed in New York several months ago because the process of buying on the black market is just too much of a pain in the ass.
Legalization in New York seems to be unlikely to happen for a few years. The state has no referendum process, so only the legislature can change the law. Legislatures are remarkably resistant to doing anything that might alienate a substantial portion of their constituency, and pot legalization continues to be a hot moral topic for many people.
I've love to tow my Harley along for my 420 road trip, if I do set out on it. Unfortunately, my 2011 Ford Ranger pickup is not up to the task. In retrospect I wish I had bought a Ranger with a bigger motor so that I could confidently haul 1,500 pounds in tow.
For those of you who disapprove of my taste for the weed... go ahead and bitch. I don't care. I'm not one of those people who say there's no price for smoking. There's a price for every vice. I'm willing to pay the price.
Been a long time since I took a cross country ride. So, maybe I will and maybe I won't... take that great 420 road trip to Colorado.