Attending the festival this weekend, drugs were very much in evidence.
Marijuana (dagga - pronounced dacha in RSA) is illegal. It is used, however, by most black people, and my colored friend in Clotesville, notwithstanding PAGAD ( .. against .. Drugs) also used it. It is also used by many white folks. It is grown in quantity locally, and is of excellent quality. The best appears to come from Swaziland and the Transkei - a homeland (??) that was, now a part of the eastern Cape.
It was truly eyeopening to see Tipis with signs advertising the ‘bottomless bong’, and hash cookies openly on sale. Police were not in evidence, though there were roadblocks and random searches on the road in to the festival. Random searches are a way of life in RSA - they use dogs for drugs.
However, once in the festival, there were no problems. Besides dagga, there were many other drugs like Ecstacy (I think the second runner after dagga, but miniscule in comparison) and other drugs I do not know names after letters of the alphabet. In the rave tents, I am sure most of the folks were on “E”.
At any time you could look around in the crowd, could be offered a joint, which were almost as common as cigarettes, and could see a couple of people rolling some. Much was grass (mixed with cigarette tobacco, a la UK, but less tobacco) but a considerable amount was hashish, also mixed with a minimum of tobacco to burn. The post-festival party at the lodge also had beaucoup dagga.
Gotta go - chatting with a computer shop here about their connection - R120 (US $25) per month, unlimited access. The US-RSA hop is done by Sprint.