I met my friend Sergio, the self proclaimed “Herbalista of Barcelona,” in front of the Barceloneta Metro station late in the morning. The Metro transported us quickly to the outer limits of the city. We waited to get a bus toward our final destination far into the surrounding hills. We skinned up a spliff of Blueberry bud and fired it up as we waited. A smile radiates to my consciousness.
The Mercedes glided gracefully in the air, until the side of the riverbed rushed to meet front suspension. BANG! We hit the ground running! Now plunging precipitously down the rivers’ dirt sides. Heading towards a cement culvert built into the earth supporting the bridge. It was 15 meters wide and the same deep. I was careening madly towards it.
My mind went into that THC riddled overdrive, while eternity stretched the time spectrum, I saw the options. Try breaking and risk crashing
down into the culvert dying in the head-on crash, or putting the pedal to the metal and trying to fly over. Flying seemed to be the preferred choice. Matchless lunacy pushing shredded metal to the limits of tolerance. The Benz hit the edge of the culvert, once more soaring.
Boom! Back tire reached the other side of the culvert. Then front came down with a crash and the Benz descended, spiraling into a billowing red cloud in the dry riverbed. Stunned from the bang my head took on the steering wheel, I was amazed to find myself still conscience. Checking toes, feet, fingers and arms were working, I finally kill the Mercedes’ diesel engine. Silence fell with the dust over the spectacle.
I yelled “everyone out!” We emerged from the vehicle, checking for injuries. The hand of Allah had been good to us, and although a bit banged up, no one had serious injuries. Had Baba Koo been among us?
Within minutes locals appeared like phantoms from the surrounding dust. Inside half-hour the whole scene morphed into a musty hippodrome. The Mercedes had saved our lives, folding into an egg around the passenger compartment. Front and back had twisted, totally smashed from the force of hitting the culvert. The wheels bent out, sprawled like an extinct animal, crowd gawking at the dying carcass, the day had turned to night.
The crowd of Afghan’s was getting larger; finally one of them came to talk to me. His name was Abdul and what he said astounded me. I was now a local hero. I had done something so special that the legend would live for a long time. I had sacrificed my Mercedes Benz for an Afghan man, and that single action was looked upon as a very holy act. Evidently the people consider a Mercedes far more valuable than an Afghan man.
For my friends; and me it was dark, all day long, and we had just lived through a great trauma. A big Hubble-Bubble was in order. We were transported back to our rest house while the car was taken to the repair shop. Caressing the large Hubble-Bubble for several hours eased the psyche to appropriate levels. That night the sagging stringed beds took on a new comfort none of us knew before.
Abdul woke me early. I felt a throbbing egg on my head; my knee had also swollen over-night. Not too bad inventory considering the crash. Abdul had tea ready. As I drank the tea, Abdul filled an emptied cigarette with hash mix and lit up. A joint in the morning and the day is your friend. Off we went to the repair shop.
Seeing the Benz that morning was a real shocker. A twisted pile of metal, stripped of its broken parts, it looked more like war debris than a Mercedes. Men are busy with small ball peen hammers, pounding feverishly away at the metal. Winches at each end of the Benz are trying to pull the twisted, bent frame back into alignment. Holy shit man! Mr. Benz would be rolling in his grave! Resurrection of the dead. Soon this would be a zombie car making its ways from Mazar to Bombay, eventually reaching the beaches of Goa with the last load of great hashish for many decades.
Abdul brought me into the office, a dull dark room filled with boxes, papers strewn about. A carpet was laid out and cushions placed around. We sat as tea was brought. The chief mechanic told me what parts to raise the vehicle from its’ demise. I want to know how the hell the body would roll straight
A flash of bright light fills the room. The door opens and a silhouette out of 1001 Arabian Nights, flowing robes blowing in the winds, large turban on a swarthy rugged figure flows into the room. This was the Prince of Mazar-I-Sharif, Ari Amir’ He had now come to sit and meet w ith the man who sacrificed a Mercedes Benz for an Afghan man.
Ari Amir is a young man, clean and well mannered. His face shined with kindness, twinkling brown eyes sharply focused looking over a well-trimmed beard. His dress was refined; Afghan striped silk outer jacket over flowing gold embroidered red velvet vest, black afghan style shirt and billowing dark trousers. He swept deftly into the room resting effortlessly near me. Crossing his legs he asks, “Are you the one? “
Abdul and Ari Amir start to chat away and the Prince turns to me and says he understands I am a Charsi. He snapped his fingers and one of his entourage came up with a large piece of Hashish. A Hubble-Bubble came out of nowhere and the Princes aide started to fill the cavernous bowl. Ari Amir starts to talk; he has heard of my sacrifice for his people and is here to invite me as guest while in Afghanistan
Being a guest means I am now invited to live and stay as long as I want. Do anything I want under the protection of the Prince. It is not something given lightly and it will mean an easy road to the harvest after all.
We all toked the Hubble-Bubble until the bowl was gray with ash.
Ari Amir says “Good. You will be brought to the palace and I will see you there. All will be taken care of.”
With that he snaps his fingers, his aide hands me a fist sized chunk of hand pressed hashish. The Prince alights like a specter on the wind and flows out of the room, his cloths billowing behind him. With a bang the door is shut. The light back to dark.
I am astounded and awed, and now after the Hubble Bubble, once again, a totally stoned freak.