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regardless, when he vanished for the last time, he left me with 750g of opium. i had no job, no money to speak of. for the most part i was stealing food so as not to starve. i had a place to live but i wasn't paying rent.
unfortunately the opium wouldn't sell, at least not nearly as fast as i needed it to. what else to do? for a time, i nurtured an opium addiction, spending my days walking the city streets with a camera, ducking into grocery stores when hungry and ducking out with pockets full of fruit and nutritional bars.
and when the nights came i nurtured my own private hell, falling from grace and watching the rest of the world fall with me. it was one thing to have an opium addiction in the 16th century. it's quite another to have one now, when the world you're removing yourself from is already on a faster track to destruction than you could ever hope to set yourself on. there was art, there was screaming, there was silence, there were suicidal moments. there was a morning spent in february watching the sun rise over lake michigan, frozen over and misting in the brutal subzero temperatures. there was a night spent in colorado springs, in the motel pool, forgetting all about the horrors of driving through kansas while floating, staring up at my first mountains, realizing that this was just the start.
in the end, though, the opium ran out. i got a job. i paid back all the rent i'd missed. really i lost no more than two months of my life, except to think back to that point, or back past it... two months? thirty years? opium infuses one with a mild sense of eternity, confounding any effort or desire to know time.