Doda, opium tea, an ally in my shaman's garden

Up here on the coast many gardeners grow opium poppies, some for opium tea. Opium tea and the use of the opium poppy predates written history. Images of opium poppies have been found in ancient Sumerian artifacts (ca. 4000 BC). There are thousands of websites about opium and the tea ritual. All the ingredients are readily available for anyone wishing to experiment, have a little fun, get jiggy with their backyard bounty.

Back in the mid-90's my hip started to go funky, by the late 90's doing either the heavy lifting and climbing involved with carpentry or most chores on my little organic farm had become less than fun. Living here in BC getting a hip replaced at age 50 is almost impossible, most replacements last 10-15 years and are seldom successfully re-replaced. The doctors here send ya home with a prescription and a story no matter what the x-rays show until you're 60-ish so most likely you and your hip's lifespan will run out in unison. At that point i was looking at a sentence of 10 years with a lotto ticket as my only chance of parole.

The pills never really worked well enough so of course i experimented with self-medication. Tried beer, always loved it recreationally and it worked great for a little while, but even beer has its downside when taken to a professional level. Certainly my lifelong devotion to ganja helped if not with the pain itself at least with forgetting about it for awhile.

My x-wife was an opium poppy brewer, she'd taught the ritual years earlier. One day as i limped through the local gardeners seed swap meet held each year i noticed one lady selling packets of opium poppy seeds she'd saved from her crop. We chatted, i learned a few more tricks about their horticultural needs and headed home with an addition to my shaman's garden. For the next 10 years i really enjoyed August. Once a person has experimented with and found the best dosage and taste [lottsa lemon and brown sugar] opium tea can be the perfect ally for a person in pain. Opium is addictive, but if you grow your own it seems to magically run out just as you notice your intake excelerating.

Every year i saved a few of the biggest bulbs for reseeding next year's beds. Every year i gave away bunches of dried flowers to friends so they could add it to their shaman's garden. Doda is the name for poppy tea if it's made from dried pods and stalks. The big bust yesterday out in Abbotsford of 60,000 poppies shows what happens, just like pot, when a person tries to go from 'getting by and getting high' to getting rich. Opium poppies are everywhere around us hiding in plain sight, waiting like an old and trusted ally for our time of need. Like cars or guns, drugs aren't harmful if you use them wisely.