There is no single party I have ever been invited to that weed was not in full supply. Almost always, some people will say something in deep sheng, such as, “Iko ndukulu?” At some point, you will see five or six people leave the house. Twenty minutes later, they’ll come back unusually happy and calm.
It is a pattern I am used to. In every nine out of ten house parties, there is always someone with rolls of bhang looking for company. There are people who smoke it as a passing fad, and there are people who are officially hooked to it, they can’t function without a puff. And the number of those hooked to weed is growing.
But what has struck me as alarming in recent times is the number of women smoking weed. It is a number that is growing at an alarming rate. Barring those experimenting, there are actually women in Nairobi who carry their joints with them. There are women who know where the best weed muffins are made and there are those who can actually bake the weed muffins themselves.
I was in the presence of weed smokers. It is the women who fished out the joints from their handbags. They were all university educated and mostly in decent jobs. These type of women always laugh at me because I don’t even know how to hold a joint or place it in my mouth.
Also don’t know the intricacies of inhaling and letting out the smoke through one nose, for good effect and desired high. So, I don’t even bother with it. Neither do I judge.
But I am really worried about my friends, who are increasingly getting hooked on it. It started as a harmless habit. They all thought it was something they could handle. Five years later, they are at a point where they cannot function without disappearing and coming back laughing and smiling sheepishly.
And now, I have a number of female friends who are taking drugs to escape the harsh realities of their lives at an alarming rate.
People take drugs to fill a certain void in their lives. And no generation leads emptier lives than my generation. I see my friends drinking themselves silly, because other than their jobs, there is nothing else they can look forward to.
They are not in meaningful relationships, while some say the women they are supposed to marry are not willing to settle down, but in reality, both men and women have become commitment-phobic.
Men want to live without responsibilities, and women want to live on their free will, unaccountable and not tied down to the demands of marriage or children.
When you have money and no spouse or children to keep you busy, you will often need a distraction. And in a city like Nairobi, where we have no recreational spaces except bars, we all take to alcohol. But this can only work for a while before you need something stronger.
Most women nowadays experiment with alcohol in their early 20s. By the time they are in their mid-20s, they would have graduated to corrosive whiskies. Soon, the prolonged usage of alcohol means they can never get the desired high, no matter how much alcohol they consume. Many actually turn to drugs. at this point.
It all starts with the freedom they get when they join campus. With so much freedom to do as they please, some get carried away, thinking that their youth will last them a life time. They drink too much and sleep around too much. Before they know it, they are 30 and empty, with nothing to live for other than the job that they hate so much..
With such dysfunctional relationships, personal frustrations and prolonged abuse of alcohol, drugs soon become the only means of getting a high, and these drugs are readily available.
Drug abuse will increase as the world becomes hollower and hollower.
Sociologists and psychologists have their work cut out for them.