Monday, May 02, 2005

Gone to the pack.

I've been back in my hometown, Auckland for 3 days now. Getting here was a mission I'd like to forget. Nine hours on a plane from Heathrow to Bangkok wasn't too bad. The 12 hour layover in Bangkok was going to prove to be in an exercise in time wasting. Which I think I'm very good at doing.

I stepped out of the airport at 6.30am and walked into what seemed to be a gigantic sauna. I was dripping in about 5 seconds. Bummer. No change of clothes. I caught a cab to Khao San Rd to go spend a good few hours at my favourite guest house. On the way I was walking down a side street and bumped into a very friendly bunch of thai locals, who at 7.00am were blasted on Chang beer and Mekong Whisky. They asked if I would join them for a drink. Hell, why not. I had 12 hours to kill. Stayed with these freaks for about two hours, and then really needed to go get a kip, as I was getting into the swing of things, getting a wee bit pished and a young Thai bird decided it would be good idea to take a perch on my lap, in a typical "friendly" Thai kind of way. Didn't really feel like meeting any "new friends", so I made my excuses, left rather quickly.

Crashed out for a few hours, went out and bought a new t-shirt to replace my manky, sweaty top, went to my dodgy chemist bought 50 valium for 500 baht and hightailed it back to the airport. Sat in the bar till my flight, hopped on board and medicated myself and woke up in Sydney. Nice. Eventually got to Auckland and had chilled out at my folks house. Gorged on fresh fish and scallops and headed out to a party in K'Road.

I've been away a year, and to be honest the social scene is getting worse. I find drinks really expensive, the music really really boring, and worst of all you can't smoke in bars. How fucked is that. I had several odd looks, as I was about to spark up. A bar will get fined $4000 if they get caught. Its insane. Everywhere I went looked packed, but infact half the punters are outside smoking. It seems the only music played in Auckland these days is house. It's lame. It gets really old, and stale really quick. A vodka is $7.50 and a pack of smokes is a tenner. Don't even bother with any other bits and pieces. $60 a lolly is taking the piss a wee bit.


The real worry that I became quickly informed about was the amount of people that are literally going down the pipe. A "P" pipe to be exact. It's shocking. I heard of at least 7 people I know that have lost the plot on meth. Marriages breaking up, people in jail and people basically getting bankrupted by a crippling addiction. It really saddens me. A lot.

Guys and girls, a wee bit of advice. The only drug you should never take is the one you have to keep from anyone else. Staying up for days isn't a good look. Don't get me wrong here, I'm no angel, not by a long shot but there's one thing I know. I can walk away from shit that will get the better of me.

Seems people in NZ have never really thought that smoking "P" would turn into the pandemic that has Auckland by the balls. If you live in a small isolated island down in a corner of the world that hasn't really had a history of serious drug addiction, coupled with every cowboy with a chemistry set, asian drug syndicates, gangs and ready made market of sheep who really have no clue how addictive this drug is. It's a recipe for disaster. That's not even mentioning the insane amount of money generated by meth which is mind boggling, from what I understand.

The thing is, people seem to be turning a blind eye to it. I'd hate to watch my friends waste away and turn into junkies. Admit your problem, talk to someone, ask for help, go to NA, Rehab, go overseas, tell your parents, whatever. The best way to stop is exactly that. Stop. Sure it's gonna be a shit few weeks, but it's a hell of a lot easier than coming off booze or opiates, and that's the honest truth. Anyway, I've said my piece. Suffice to stay, I'm happy I'm not living here anymore, it's a depressing state of affairs. Moving right along.


I went to see Shihad play a live gig in Aotea Square yesterday kicking off New Zealand Music Month. It was raining, a little muggy and it rocked. Isn't Jon Toogood looking a lot like Iggy pop these days eh! I've met up with a lot of old mates, some who I haven't seen in over five years, which has been rather special. This week is fully booked up with lunches, dinner parties and I imagine quite a few nice vinos. Lets see how much my waistline and pounds are going to stretch in the next few weeks.

Anyway, must dash. I'm being taking to a new fish market for lunch. Yum.