🤦‍♂️ I Accidentally Smuggled Weed To Singapore 🙅‍♂️

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(Edited)

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"You can never check your bags carefully enough when flying internationally," says the guy who wears a turban daily.👳🛃

🤦‍♂️ Prelude To A Colossal Mistake 🤦‍♂️

     I obtained my medical marijuana card back in the early 2000's when I was living in Colorado. It was quite a novelty back then, and there weren't even any places to legally buy it when I first got my card.

not the herb I lost, but an example of what we were smoking back in the days before dabs

     Cutting to the chase, I apparently misplaced a 10g bag of ganja I purchased from the Colorado Compassion Club, the first dispensary in Colorado. I must say I don't remember ever sensing some herb was missing nor searching for it.

🙅‍♂️ Singapore, But Not By Choice 🙅‍♂️

     Fast forward to the year 2011, where I'm living in Cambodia and teaching English. Between the time I lost 10g of herb 5+ years earlier and then, I'd flown internationally many times through various airports of the world with my favorite messenger bag.

     I'd even taken a trip to India and Sikkim with a friend from Singapore that I'd met working at a YMCA youth camp in Indiana, of course not without my favorite messenger bag.

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My Singaporean friend and I in Sikkim near Kangchenjunga

     This particular friend had even come to visit me in Colorado before our trip to India together, so I felt I owed him a visit being so close to Singapore while living in Cambodia.

     Eventually I had a few free weeks in my schedule, so I purchased a roundtrip Phnom Penh to Singapore ticket to meet my friend on his home turf, even though Singapore is a place I would've never gone otherwise.

Not My Cup Of Tea 🍵

     Singapore has everything I try to avoid when selecting an interesting country to visit. It's crowded, expensive, the locals have very little free-time, and they live high-stress lives.

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     I'll try to fast forward a bit now, as this post isn't about the awesome stuff you can do in Singapore with money you've earned in Cambodia. My friend and I took a multi-day excursion to Malacca, Malaysia, by bus.

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Christ Church in Malacca, a popular tourist site

     On the bridge back to Singapore returning from Malaysia, I was performing a deep search for my headphones when I felt a paper thin baggy with the tip of my finger. I fish-hooked the bag out from a little cranny using my index finger, only to discover 10g of several year old compressed Colorado medical marijuana.

Awkward Customs Encounter 🛃

     Only having a minute to do something before we would arrive at the Singapore Customs checkpoint, and not wanting to alert my friend or anyone else on the bus to anything out of the ordinary, I was able to discreetly jam the bag of weed into a crevice between the seats.

     What would happen during the next half hour would have me thinking I was going to end up on the show "Locked Up Abroad." I asked my friend how long the customs process would take, and he let me know Singapore is super fast and state of the art, and that it would be a breeze.

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somewhere near the Customs Checkpoint in Singapore

     He also let me know we'd exit the bus for the re-entry process while the bus was being x-rayed and checked by dogs. My heart sank in my chest when he said this, and my palms begin sweating.

     The dogs were certainly going to find the herb, but I was not going to admit to anything, and I wasn't going to involve my friend no matter what.

     Surely enough, just like a bad TV show, my name was called from behind before I could enter the passport control area. Falling apart inside, I tried to act as natural as possible knowing this wasn't going to be anything like a Cambodian police encounter.

     Somehow they already knew I wasn't traveling alone, and quickly summoned my friend to this mystery room. Immediately my friend began getting aggressive, demanding they hurry up so we can catch our bus.

     They begin asking us all kinds of questions, from how we knew each other to why we went to Malaysia, and all the while my friend visibly upset with this intense questioning. I, however, was answering as calmly and respectfully as I could.

     It reached a climax when one of the officers told me he used to live in New York in the 1970s, and asked me if I liked the Grateful Dead. "Nope, not really my kind of music," was my answer to that entrapment.

🚌 Back On The Bus 🚶‍♂️

     In the end, it turns out they were concerned for my financial status upon re-entry. I wasn't able to prove enough funds to satisfy the Singaporean government, so my friend had to sign some formal paperwork making him my "guardian" of sorts.

     We hopped back on the bus and yes, my herb was right where I left it. "Was this a trap?" "Do they want to catch me red-handed?" "If I leave it on the bus they'll surely question the only non-Singaporean on the whole bus once they've found it."

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     A flood of what-ifs ran through my head, but in the end I decided it best to get the herb out of the bus. I wasn't tackled as I exited with the herb, so I arrived safely back to my friend's house with 10g of vintage high-grade in the worst country in the world to be in possession of such a thing.

Singapore Hospitality

     Apparently being friends for over 15 years wasn't enough trust for me to be left alone in the apartment while my friend and his wife went to work and his parents went out for the day.

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     I ultimately was kicked out of the house each day early in the morning, and then could only return when another resident family member arrived back at the house to let me in.

     I only came to see my friend, and I didn't have money to be a tourist in Singapore, so I decided to roll a spliff and smoke it each day in one of the various free public parks, and basically just waste the day.

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see those big red letters, can't believe I lived through this one

     I managed to find a few places for budget meals, so I survived well enough, but Singapore is far from my kind of place. Even my friend's apartment gave me vertigo when I occasionally looked out the window.

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     It was so strange not being trusted in my friend's apartment alone, but I learned to cope with it.

🚫 Vibes Wrong 🧘‍♂️

     I can't explain how bizarre it is to smoke high-grade marijuana when you haven't smoked it for years, and in a place where you are surrounded by people who have no idea what smoking marijuana feels like.

     Initially I was worried people would notice my red eyes or smell it on me, but Singapore's eyes are distracted by their screens at all times.

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     I ultimately survived Singapore, but I missed Cambodia the whole time I was there. My friend and I's vibes were never the same again after he revealed there were trust issues with me. I wouldn't have even gone had I known that first.

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two different realities, I returned to this happily flooded Cambodia

     I was glad to return to a rough and wild flooded Cambodia after the experience, where the people are engaged in life, and curious for what each day holds. These two countries are living in parallel universes, and it was an experience that really made me apprecialove how Cambodia has affected my worldview.

🙏 THANKS FOR READING 🙏

If you enjoyed this post, please upvote and reblog.

Dad
@JustinParke
Mom
@SreyPov
Srey-Yuu
@KidSisters
Monkey B
@KidSisters

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Dude you escaped a bullet! And that’s crazy about the finically status thing. Are they afraid you will wind up homeless there or something?

Most probably don’t smoke herb, but I hear meth use is very high there.

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Like, he literally escaped death man. They don't fuck around there. EVen his friend would have ratted him out if he found out there was weed on him.

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Yeah very crazy! I don’t even know how I would of handled that situation. Justin is a total G! Mad props. The block chain should also be very great full, he brings so much value to it.

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I did escape a bullet, or a caning, or a life sentence, not sure. But I think I can safely say I lived to share it on the blockchain.

Give thanks for the kind words.

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He surely would've ratted me out.

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Man I'm glad you got through that shit. Some people weren't meant to be your friend; sometimes they're better off as acquaintances and long distance friends

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Hey man. Have you ever been to Singapore?

Yeah man. But have you ever been to Singapore on weed?

Lol.

That's awesome that some customs officer in China has been to NY and probably saw The Grateful Dead stoned and tripping balls. 🤣🤣🤣

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I wasn't sure if the customs officer was baiting me into an awkward conversation, so I didn't want to play that game, cause Singaporeans look down on weed like it's heroine or something.

But I have been to Singapore.......on weed man!

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Smuggling drugs and not getting caught.. #winning

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I definitely In Singapore, herb is definitely "drugs," and the public views it as such. You'd probably have to "know some people who know some people who rob some people" to buy weed in Singapore.

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Lmao man my heart skipped when you got searched in the bus. I have heard stories about how some Asian countries have a hardline stance on weed and drugs, they really don't fuck around. Like, you literally escaped death.

It doesn't sound like a fun experience to be treated like that by your friend's family though. I've learnt over the years that some friends are better off as long distance friends because meeting them in real life might just ruin the vibe. Sorry you had to experience that. What a rollercoaster ride though

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It was a hell-acious experience, even worse was the first time I smoked in a park there and paranoia set in. Cambodia is a whole other experience, where strangers invite you to eat with them and stay at their house.

I didn't even learn to enjoy being high in Singapore until day 3. My friend changed through the years for the worse, and I blame a bit on the extreme wealth and insularity of Singapore. We don't talk anymore, and to top things off, he actually took me to the airport too late and I missed my flight.

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Man now that was a horrible experience. Losing some friends is for the best sometimes I guess.

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I was laughing the whole time..good thing you didnt get caught.

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That's really all you can do sometimes (laugh)....of course after you first sweat a liter out through your palms at a border crossing. Even in Saudi Arabia I didn't get any visa cards or stamps talking bout "DEATH" in red letters.

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That's quite a story! I'm curious what caused your friend to mistrust you, I wonder if it was because of the customs detainment, or maybe he caught on to you hiding the weed? lol I'm sure that's a whole other story for another day...

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I think it was a bit of his Chinese way of thinking combined with Singaporean wealth and mentality. He actually chastised for me living in Cambodian among primitive people whose lives are going nowhere. That was pretty much the nail in the coffin for our friendship.

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Yikes, sounds like you dodged a bullet then!

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I´ve heard a lot of crazy stories and experienced myself, but this is different. Smuggling weed into Singapore without knowing it is probably one of the most dangerous things you can do! 😂

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Very true, only thing more dangerous is willfully and knowingly smuggling weed to Singapore.

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If you would have done it intensionally you would have been qualified to carry the title "Balls of Steel". If you would've been caught...you'd be part of a CNN special :) and a RIP next to ya name...

ps: That friend was never a friend

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True, only a week before I left some young Australian kid was bragging how he smuggled weed to Singapore by stuffing the middle of several cigarettes, and I remember lambasting him for 5 minutes about how stupid that was.

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Its actually kinds weird that he would let you stay at his place but not alone when they're all out. Tbh, I rarely let people stay at my place as I'm quite a private person and it upsets my routine, but if I do, I don't have a problem with them being on there own

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Spot on, I would've felt more comfortable had they told me ahead of time it would be awkward like that. I guess they assumed I would love being on streets of Singapore 12 hours a day with Cambodian savings.....wrong. One day wandering around Singapore could easily consume 2 months of savings from Cambodia.

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(Edited)

You are make me smile a lot B.

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Glad I didn't know you at that time cause you might've been in the bus with me.

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I made the same mistake in Malaysia but found out after I arrived... I got pulled off the bus in Mexico in 99 and had quite a crazy experience. Thought I'd learned my lesson but last year had the Malaysia "incident". Trust issues? You're one of the few I'd let stay in my house. Hmm in the 20 plus years I've been over here I've never been to Singapore. Just never really appealed to me. Anyways made for a good story and a warning for the future. Hopefully haha...

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The airport is cheap and useful, I will say that, but the people are very closed and insulated. Not much freedom of the press either. When I was there a woman set herself on fire outside a nearby government building. I'm not sure what the issue was, but I heard it was something concerning her apartment. That's just an example of the pressure these people live under.......not my cup of tea.

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What a bizzarre story and you are one lucky and brave dude i would have no way taken back of the bus with me not with the Singaporean rules over there and did and even smoked it in public fuck me that is crazy 😅

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Yeah, it was hard to know what was the best choice in the moment, but after I successfully got off the bus with it, I had to keep it. I decided to store it in a nearby park instead of keeping it on me.

I only ever smoked when I had 360 degree panoramic view of all incoming humans reaching 200 meters. This would've given me enough time to swallow the spliff.

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Well starting with a boring non trusting dude friend i would of needed a joint myself...haha 😂 😂

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@justinparke you gotta be careful so they don't end up making a Brokedown Palace movie about you! lol


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I got lucky, would certainly never travel to Singapore ever again, with out without weed. It is merely a place of transit to me these days.

Even when leaving Cambodia with the family in tow, we had a one day layover in Singapore, and the airport authorities warned us not to leave the airport, and actually made me verbally promise we wouldn't, even though we all were eligible for visas on arrival.

I think it was the "poor" thing again. I think we looked like migrants instead of world travelers, so Singapore didn't want to risk having us on their streets.

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