Again within the “OG days,” as we’ll in all probability fondly recall the time earlier than legalization, one in every of my biggest joys was bringing in a turkey bag filled with flowers to our city seller associates, or later to the consumers at rising dispensaries.

First, we’d should “run the gauntlet” as driving the weed down the freeway from ranch to town was recognized. That was one half paranoia, one half hyper-awareness of the highway and one half transcendent confidence. However as soon as we acquired to the seller pal or the noticed our associates on the dispensary, it was all the time so value it to open up an enormous bag of luscious buds and let the thick terpenes fill the air with scrumptious scents from the backyard. “Whoa” was the standard response, as delighted associates would put their complete head into the bag and breathe deeply.

We used to like going into locations like Harborside in Oakland, one of many oldest dispensaries round, and the workers can be thrilled to see us. “Oh boy, we’re getting some Swami bud in right here!” they’d exclaim, and it all the time felt so good. We’d grasp across the gross sales room and meet joyful clients. It gave us the chance to listen to what they used cannabis for, what strains they appreciated one of the best and a lot extra. We’d meet different farmers dropping off their merchandise and stay associates with a few of them to today. It was all so canna-familial.

We knew, in fact, that issues would change with the arrival of Prop 64, and as of Jan. 1, 2018 certainly it has. Now it’s the distribution group who delivers cannabis flowers, fastidiously packaged in fancy glass jars, to the shops. I converse with the consumers primarily by cellphone or over the web. Such is life in 2019. However that’s the reason it’s so essential to schedule in-store meet and greet classes to get nose to nose with our clients. That is how we keep present with the true beat of what’s taking place in cannabis, and it’s so completely different in varied components of California.

Swami and I are on the highway a complete lot lately, experiencing components of our state that I didn’t even know existed. A few months in the past we had been in Riverside County to go to Inexperienced America, a dispensary within the city of Perris. The panorama on this a part of Southern California is paying homage to outdated Wild West motion pictures with barren, rocky hills dotted with scrub brush. I anticipated to see the Lone Ranger trip by smoking a fatty. Nicely, there have to be loads of stoners residing within the area, as a result of the shop is doing nice and new ones are sprouting up like desert flowers after a rainfall.

In out-of-the-way locations like Perris, actual farmers from the famed Emerald Triangle like us are a uncommon sighting. In additional city settings, the budtenders and the clientele primarily meet gross sales reps from the varied corporations who arrange a desk within the gross sales space to point out off their product strains. However Swami and I get pleasure from doing it ourselves as a lot as attainable, and clients are all the time stunned to fulfill us precise farmers. We clarify to them how the crops develop, the method of harvest and the advantages of rising in full solar with natural strategies. In a couple of shops there are even connected smoking lounges the place we will share a smoke with the shoppers, which is all the time an additional deal with.

We’ve met yogis and mystics, bikers and soccer mothers. Typically significantly sick individuals are available to ask us about what cultivar is greatest for his or her symptom and to get a blessing from Swami. One well-dressed senior lady lately spoke with me whereas her husband was buying some flowers to take house. “I don’t wish to smoke it,” she expressed matter-of-factly. “Typically I’ll get pleasure from an edible, however largely I like velocity.” What? I assumed I had heard her unsuitable, however she continued, “It’s really easy, I’ve been getting weight loss supplements from my physician for years and it’s simply my factor.” Nicely, as they are saying, no matter will get you excessive … however I pray she strikes on to cannabis as a substitute.

On our show desk, I wish to arrange an altar to Ganja Ma, the goddess of cannabis, to create a sacred tone and be a dialog starter. Swami additionally has begun to supply meditation classes at some shops, which is proving to be an actual bonus to all of us. Most individuals arrive after partaking in some cannabis, so they’re within the excellent headspace to get even increased by way of meditation and chanting. We’re so lucky to stay in California, the house of acutely aware consumption and better residing. The place the place Timothy Leary boldly declared on the first Human Be-In in 1967: “Tune In, Flip On and Drop Out.” As of late, we could all must perform below numerous guidelines and laws, however the ethos stays the identical.

Some retailers are slick, some are funky and some are spectacular. In truth, it’s a complete new career to be a cannabis retailer designer. Clearly some take their cues from Apple shops, resembling MedMen, whereas others are a lot extra cozy and welcoming. A lot of the vibe depends upon the budtenders and gross sales workers.

Seems the budtenders could also be an important hyperlink of all, from farmer to client. They have to be educated and affected person and compassionate. They have to be the sommeliers of cannabis and know which cultivar that they carry is greatest for every buyer’s wants. There even is an annual Budtender Awards ceremony held in Las Vegas to honor one of the best of them. Every time we go to shops, we make certain to fulfill them and share tales and welcome them to our ranch for additional schooling. Many have by no means seen an enormous lady plant rising in full solar, flowers stretching in direction of the sky! And after they do, it usually modifications their minds about outside versus indoor weed.

We’re all half of a big cannabis neighborhood, and it’s rising day by day. It’s a blessing to be part of this pioneer motion and to get out and be with the individuals. After placing 9 months of affection and care into cultivating high quality flowers, it’s a bonus to fulfill the parents who find yourself having fun with their many advantages. As they are saying, it’s a complete course of, from seed to sale, and we relish being part of each step alongside the best way.

TELL US, have you ever ever met the farmer who grew cannabis you consumed?