There is a major drug addiction problem in Spain. Everyone I know my age (forties-fifties-ish, so now you know I am really old haha) used to take tons of drugs like marijuana, hashish and cocaine, and I was wondering why. It was like Spain in the 1990’s was like Woodstock in the 1960’s.
So turns out that the reason drugs were so popular was, well asides from the fact that it is easy to get them because they just smuggle them over the strait from Morocco, where most of these drugs come from.
Turns out that after Franco died and Spain became a democracy, in the 1980’s, Spanish law made it legal to consume drugs! That turned Spain into the drug haven of the world.
Lots of young people travelled to Spain from all over the world just so they could buy these substances easily and take them legally and not have to worry about going to jail. And young Spanish people also took psychotropics because they were so easy to obtain.
(And by the by if you happen not to agree with me or you think that I am wrong, please don’t put up hate comments, which will be deleted. I am not working on a doctoral thesis on this subject and therefore I didn’t do the thorough research people must do when writing a thesis, nor can I put up citations or quote formal studies. I merely consulted a couple of websites as well as relied on my own personal observations of people that I know and met.)
Today drug addiction and drug use in Spain doesn’t seem to be as big a problem anymore as it was 20 years ago, thanks to the fact that there is a lot more awareness that drugs are NOT okay and that drugs DO cause permanent health problems.
20 years ago Spain was a new democracy and it was like everyone went crazy and there was a big free for all and all of a sudden everyone felt like they could do whatever they wanted, anything at all, including taking drugs.
People here in Spain were so naïve because having been cut off from the rest of the world for 40 years they didn’t know the things people in the rest of the world already knew. After all we didn’t have internet back then.
People here had zilch knowledge about drug addiction and didn’t know things such as that drugs are bad for your health. They just didn’t know that. Such information simply wasn’t flying around on every street corner over here.
So they thought it was okay to take drugs and that nothing would happen if you took them.
And now today there are hundreds of thousands of drug addicts and ex drug addicts in Spain, all of them over the age of 40.
The problem of drug addiction is worse here in the south of Spain, because southern Spain is where all these illegal plant derivatives arrive to first, coming from Africa.
My ex brother-in-law died of an overdose. He was actually in rehabilitation treatment, but it involved him taking other strong medication to help him overcome his withdrawal. And one day he overdosed on the strong drugs he was taking to overcome his withdrawal and passed away.
He was maybe in his mid to late 50’s.
So you can imagine there must be a MAJOR drug addiction problem in a society if the majority of people there with such problems are that age. If he was in his late 50’s it means he must have been indulging in the habit for 30 years or so.
Lots of people take recreational substances as teenagers or in their 20’s, but after that they stop and they get serious with life. They get a job, forget about that lifestyle. So if people in their 50’s and 60’s are still doing drugs, that means they were never able to get over their addiction.
When I arrived in Spain in the late 1990’s there was a whole load of hippies here from all over the world and all they ever did was spend the whole day smoking hashish and juggling.
That’s where I learnt hippie things like poi (in Spanish it’s called carioca, who knew?) (dancing with poi balls originated from the Maori in NZ) and fire juggling using lighted twirling batons, which is something I did when I was working in a theatre.
You twirl the lit batons around in your hands and make patterns.
We used lit poi balls too, we made them out of asbestos. I’m sure today they would make them out of much less toxic materials. And we lit them with kerosene, clearly Spain didn’t have a lot of safety laws back then.
There was a bloke in the theatre who swallowed fire batons as well. Well, he put them in his mouth lit and they would go out inside that oxygen-starved space, and he “breathed” fire as well. The way he did it was he would take a mouthful of kerosene or gasoline (there really really really were no safety laws in Spain back then, and probably not now either but don’t quote me on that……) and spit it out and as he spit it out he would light it with his torch.
In those days there were all these hippie camps in places that are famous for them such as Órgiva or even Granada itself. Youths from all over Europe used to hang out there in droves dressed in loose tie-dyed outfits, banging on drums and spending their days in a smoke-filled daze zoning out on weed and hash.
If you’d dropped by southern Spain in the late 1990’s you might even have seen them for yourself.
Well I guess in a way I was privileged to enjoy a glimpse into what might’ve been the Woodstock lifestyle, without needing to jump into a time machine or having to be born in the 50’s.
Yep, those were the days.
So do you have any thoughts on this subject? Feel free to leave me any comments (except hate comments as mentioned earlier) down below.
And if you’re in the mood for some good, creepy scary reading, do check out some of my thrillers. You can read about them here: Thrillers by Moi.
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