True stories with a twist!

Unknown“Is it legal here?”

“Where can I buy it?”

That question, in all of it’s innocent sincerity, can hide secret desires and hidden wishes. But it also can be an honest search to help relieve chronic pain.

Several friends have developed age related aches and pains, some severe enough to seek medical advice and treatment. Two have received prescriptions for medical marijuana for the treatment of chronic severe pain. So I am aware of the questions regarding the legality of this drug.

On my trip to California this winter I decided to get information about this strange plant with mysterious healing properties. Marijuana sales are legal in California, and sold in state approved dispensaries. I was interested in trying a balm containing cannabis to relieve pain in my hands. Can the healing claims be true?

After many telephone calls and questions, the advice I was given on the telephone, (with no medical background information requested), was that the best product for me would be an externally applied skin balm containing a three to one ratio of CBDs and THCs. CBD oil from the cannabis plant has no mind altering properties. THC is the part of the plant that does contain that property.

Armed with that advice, my husband, son, and son’s significant other embarked on  our mission to La Mesa to the store that sold a variety of products. To our surprise it was located in an ordinary industrial park along with the most ordinary of businesses and products. No sign here of anything unusual or dangerous. Until we approached the dispensary.

A frighteningly high level of security met us as we continued. We parked the car, walked to the entrance and immediately saw two heavily armed guards blocking our way. I felt as if we were approaching the border of a third world country. The first burly guard, armed with a high caliber firearm, told me to open my handbag for inspection. After passing this first step of security we were each asked for our drivers’ licenses. He took all four of them and handed them to a woman making copies of the documents. Next he placed a tray before us, airport access style, and requested that all bags be put into it. “You will get your papers back as well as the bags,” he barked in his gentlest growl.

All of us were surprised at the TSA-like security of this operation. While the items were being scanned I wondered whether similar precautionary steps were taken by NASA before sending the first man into space.

Finally, as a last precaution, we each had to pass through a metal detector.

My husband asked the guard, “Do all dispensaries have this level of security?”

“Only the legal ones!” he answered.

Finally, inside the dispensary we were met by a woman who offered a written menu of all the products that were for sale. They were arranged in categories: Edibles, vapes, lotions. She was assigned to fill our order and would get us everything we needed. We were not permitted to shop by ourselves.

The feeling inside the dispensary was one of uncomfortably watchful distrust. The woman showed us products in various strengths and combinations of CBD and THC. When I selected one of the balms and reached for my credit card to pay, I was reprimanded with, “Cash only.”

So I wondered, “If I buy this balm will I be finger printed? Will they demand that I pose for a mug shot?”

As I left the dispensary my mind swirled with images of armed guards, X-Ray machines and metal detectors. I thought again of having copies made of my drivers’ license and being assigned a watchful guard playing the role of helpful salesperson.

Is this how a bank robber feels after a successful heist?

Is this how a Brinks armored car thief feels after breaking in?

Is this how it feels to prepare for a lengthy prison sentence?

The real question is, did the Cannabis work? Did it relieve the pain?

I had only a few days to rub the balm into my painful hands before it was time to return to the illegal place I call home. After the strange interlude I do not have any conclusions about the efficacy of Cannabis for joint pain. It was not worth risking arrest for smuggling an illegal substance into New Jersey, so for the time being I will have to hope that Tylenol will suffice to mitigate sore, achy joints.










Comments on: "MY CANNABIS EXPERIENCE" (22)

  1. […] via MY CANNABIS EXPERIENCE — MorristownMemos […]

  2. Wow, here in Florida medical marijuana is legal and its not quite the same security as what you experienced. There is a “guard” not at the door, but behind the cash register helping people check in and taking their orders. I use it for my Crohn’s Disease which is not a cure all, but definitely helps control symptoms of pain, cramping and even reducing the number of visits to the bathroom. My quality of life is better as a result!

  3. adprintsoutlookcom said:

    Interesting read. I am still living in an illegal state but as you will see with my blog, it doesn’t hold me back..
    I’d have been tempted to do a bit of smuggling if I was you..
    Nice Blog BTW.

    • Smuggling is a great idea iF you are willing to face the consequences if you got caught. I once was chosen as a random passenger to be searched before boarding the plane. If I had an illegal drug in my suitcase I shudder to think of the consequences…

  4. Jon Cooper | ebbu Founder and CEO said:

    Thanks for sharing!!

  5. Very interesting and informative post Ronnie, I have asked my doctor about medicinal cannabis also, primarily for my PTSD, but also my severe headaches due to spinal damage, here in Australia it is recognized but rarely prescribed, I seem to always be directed to pain management programs which ultimately lead me back to prescription medication.
    Would certainly be interested in trying it for pain relief.
    Thank for sharing your experience.
    Kind regards and best wishes.

    • How good to have you back in the blogger world, Ian. Yes, I think it is worth a try. Some people in my rehab pool have been prescribed medical marajuana and some have been greatly helped by its use. Good luck to you; I wish you the best.

  6. Helen R. Carey said:

    Fascinating, Ronnie. I don’t think I would have had the courage to go through with the sale. Do you think you would try it if legal here? It almost sounds like the purchase would bo on that “Permanent Record” that we were told about it the dark ages of our childhood.

    • I would try it if people I trusted told me they were helped by it. Would that be any different from trying a new medication that you never tried yourself but heard good things about from friends and doctors?

  7. Gosh! I’m baffled by the high level of security . Pity you couldn’t have tried it for a longer period.

  8. I purchase Alni CBD Vegan Body Care @

    CBD, Tumeric oil, and peppermint. I’m a 5-time loser to Back surgery, 2 Cervical, 3 Lumbar. I use it primarily on the back of the neck. Weather-related High-Pressure systems are the roughest, I find relief. I rub the residual oil on the backs of my hands, relief for the knuckles.

    Great descriptive post, I really visualized it. I do not miss my rearing state, Exit 3 area of NJTPK.

    • Thanks for sharing the name of then product the brings you relief. We may try that one! That was heavy duty back surgery you went through; I hope things are better post-surgically. The results of surgery are a mixed bag.

  9. I see nothing wrong with the use of Cannabis oils but think the process in California was rather ridiculous. I do know many people who have less pain after using it.

    • I don’t know anybody personally who uses cannabis for pain, since it is illegal in NJ, but do have friends who have gotten prescriptions for medical marijuana. I have heard both good reviews and indifferent ones. In this small sample trial, the results are mixed.

  10. Wow, fascinating. I’ve bought some balms on Amazon– not sure they’re helping.

  11. Don’t you go starting rumors: it was legal in California!!!

  12. harvey hammer said:

    “Whew!”(sense of relief) for my sweet desperado

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