Is Amsterdam Still The Top Marijuana Destination?
I started smoking marijuana in 1993. Throughout the rest of the 90's, growing up as a teenager in Oregon, I always dreamed of going to Amsterdam. I heard so many stories about how you could buy the best marijuana very easily, and you could even smoke it in a public cafe or store. One of my best friends went to Amsterdam in 1999, and I was very curious to see what it was really like, and if the stories were true.
This friend was considered to be the top marijuana smoker out of all our friends. His older brother sold the best Oregon chronic around, and as a result, he could smoke more marijuana than anyone I had ever seen, still to this day. I knew he would give me a very accurate description of what it was like over there. I had reservations about some stories I had heard from people because they were such rookie marijuana smokers.
When my friend came back from Amsterdam, he had nothing but the best things to say. His older brother had just got some great chronic, and my friend kept telling us that stuff like that is a dime a dozen over there. 'You can get fifty different strains, and they are almost all tested!' I remember him exclaiming. All the guys I bought marijuana from at the time only had one or two strains to choose from, and testing seemed like something off the Jetsons at the time.
My how times have changed! There are more places to buy the highest grade marijuana on the West Coast of the US than I could ever list. I feel confident that in every major city on the I-5 corridor I could find Amsterdam quality marijuana fairly easily. There are so many outlets in Oregon now, there is at least one dispensary or delivery service in every metro area. From what I hear about Washington and California, and even Colorado, it's the same scenario in those places too.
Even Keizer, Oregon has a public place for medical marijuana patients to gather and smoke. Testing is still in it's infancy in the United States, but from what I am learning from experts, the testing in Amsterdam hasn't been that reliable anyway. One of the top people at Full Spectrum Laboratories in Colorado once told me that it's virtually impossible to get the levels that they have been reporting from Amsterdam.
For so long, going to the High Times Cannabis Cup required a trip to Amsterdam. I just went to the Cannabis Cup in Los Angeles last weekend. I think that pretty much speaks for itself. From what media reports say, tourists aren't allowed to even purchase marijuana in Amsterdam anymore, although I'm told by those that frequent there it's just harder to obtain, but far from banned. Either way, Amsterdam just doesn't sound as attractive to me as it used to.
Someday I want to go there just to get it off my marijuana bucket list. But, quite frankly, at this point I would rather travel to Colorado, or California, or take a trip up the I-5 to Washington. The marijuana is scientifically proven to be just as good, there are more places to socially consume it than anyone could ever imagine, and most importantly, I already know the culture :)
What's the scoop TWB readers? Have you been to Amsterdam recently? How was it? Are you like me and you no longer feel it's as awesome as it used to be? Or do you still feel that it's the 'Mecca of Marijuana?' I look forward to your comments.