HAMSTERS & HEROIN: Not all junkies are purse-snatching grandmother-killing psychos. I'm keeping this blog to bear witness to that fact.


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I used to take heroin at every opportunity, for over 10 years, now I just take methadone which supposedly "stabilizes" me though I feel more destabilized than ever before despite having been relatively well behaved since late November/early December 2010... and VERY ANGRY about this when I let it get to me so I try not to.

I was told by a mental health nurse that my heroin addiction was "self medication" for a mood disorder that has recently become severe enough to cause psychotic episodes. As well as methadone I take antipsychotics daily. Despite my problems I consider myself a very sane person. My priority is to attain stability. I go to Narcotics Anonymous because I "want what they have" ~ Serenity.

My old blog used to say "candid confessions of a heroin and crack cocaine addict" how come that one comes up when I google "heroin blog" and not this one. THIS IS MY BLOG. I don't flatter myself that every reader knows everything about me and follows closely every single word every day which is why I repeat myself. Most of that is for your benefit not mine.

This is my own private diary, my journal. It is aimed at impressing no-one. It is kept for my own benefit to show where I have been and hopefully to put off somebody somewhere from ever getting into the awful mess I did and still cannot crawl out of. Despite no drugs. I still drink, I'm currently working on reducing my alcohol intake to zero.

If you have something to say you are welcome to comment. Frankness I can handle. Timewasters should try their own suggestions on themselves before wasting time thinking of ME.

PS After years of waxing and waning "mental" symptoms that made me think I had depression and possibly mild bipolar I now have found out I'm schizoaffective. My mood has been constantly "cycling" since December 2010. Mostly towards mania (an excited non-druggy "high"). For me, schizoaffective means bipolar with (sometimes severe)
mania and flashes of depression (occasionally severe) with bits of schizophrenia chucked on top. You could see it as bipolar manic-depression with sparkly knobs on ... I'm on antipsychotic pills but currently no mood stabilizer. I quite enjoy being a bit manic it gives the feelings of confidence and excitement people say they use cocaine for. But this is natural and it's free, so I don't see my "illness" as a downer. It does, however, make life exceedingly hard to engage with...

PPS The "elevated mood" is long gone. Now I'm depressed. Forget any ideas of "happiness" I have given up heroin and want OFF methadone as quick as humanly possible. I'm fed up of being a drug addict. Sick to death of it. I wanna be CLEAN!!!

Attack of the Furry Entertainers!

Attack of the Furry Entertainers!

Friday, May 07, 2010


I HAVE FOUND a degree course where, even as a mother-tongue English-speaker, I could spend the entire three years studying BA German in a quaint historical town in Germany.

The idea of possibly having to move city in the UK to study a language spoken only a few hundred miles across the water always did strike me as bizarre. If you want to learn German, go to Germany!

The course is called Translation with Cultural Studies (Translations-, Sprach und Kulturwissenschaft) at the Johannes Gutenberg Universität in Mainz. Instead of spending three years reading great literature (which would be very nice, but a huge indulgence; also the amount of reading required on a literature course is momentous) ~ I would study German as my main foreign language (the so-called B language; English, as my mother-tongue would be the A language). The goal being to be able to translate into and out of the B language with near mother-tongue fluency. I would then pick a C language (French), which would be brought up to “excellent passive fluency” ~ ie you translate out of French into German and English (but never vice-versa). There’s also an option to do a D language, in which case I would pick Dutch. As y’all can see from yesterday’s post, Dutch stands midway between German and English on the dialect continuum, so it’s not particularly difficult to pick up.

I don’t know any UK institution where I could learn German, French and Dutch all together. People have always queried why Dutch? Even a student of BA Norwegian expressed astonishment at this Wunsch of mine. Dutch-Flemish has over 24 million speakers in the EU (plus six million more in South Africa as Afrikaans), which is far more than all the Scandinavian languages put together. Looking at the map, French and German form a massive block of central Europe, and Dutch fills in the gap both geographically and linguistically. Dutch is the closest major relative to English, which is a cross between French and Germanic. So the four languages tie together nicely. See: there is some method to my madness! I just think it’s amazing I finally found a course where I can do everything I want in the right location. (I’ve always wanted to do German in Germany but until I found this course it didn’t seem possible.)

I’ve posted up some pictures of Mainz, a mediaeval town on the banks of the Rhine in Western Germany, about a hundred miles from France, Luxemburg and Belgium.

Named after Johannes Gutenberg, the father of modern printing, the university was established in 1477. It now has 34,000 students and is unusual among ancient universities in offering nearly all its facilities on a single campus. Most mediaeval universities in Europe are scattered across various sites in town.

If I want to get on this course I’m going to have to bring my German up to scratch massively. My fluency has improved since I read the Christiane F memoir. Dictionary in hand, I copied every single word I wasn’t entirely sure of into a thick notebook along with its translation and when this seemed laborious I told myself this is how countless people across the world have learned English...

I’ve reached a point now, where I’m starting to be able to use German practically, which is the whole point of learning a foreign language, surely. I can read German-language websites. It took long enough to get here. But I’ve a way to go before I’m ready for this course...

I would actually get a vocational qualification. I would be qualified to do something at long last!

Link: “German in Germany” at Mainz University.

Illustrated top to bottom left-right-left-right: panorama view of town and university; university main foyer; Roman Catholic cathedral; white statue; regional parliament; a tower ~ my ideal home; tudor buildings in Kirschgarten


Bimbimbie said...

Gleds, are you still up ... what time is it there ... must be well after midnight?

Rita said...

Magnificent plans. Sounds like something up your alley. Go for it!

Baino said...

Gleds you're omnipresent this week! Found a new internet cafe? Mainz is beautiful then I love any of the Alpine German towns. Clean up, apply, do it, get a fresh start! Ha your word verification is 'poing' sort of like 'ping' . . go on . .ping into action

Gattina said...

Don't learn Dutch and German in one shot, you will be completely mixed up, it's just like learning Queens English and Cockney. The Raaain in Spaaain ... Mainz is a nice town have been there ages ago.
BTW Afrikaans has nothing to do with dutch ! I know that from a South African group I met in Amsterdam ! They didn't understand a single word and therefore spoke English. Fortunately in Amsterdam everything is in English too, menu cards etc.

Syd said...

I hope that you will follow through. You have a good mind. And know that you would be qualified to do many things. Keep your hope alive and go do these things for which you have passion.

Gledwood said...

Bimbimbie: Yes! The General Election was "too exciting"..!

Rita: Where there's a will there's a way ;-)...

Baino: I will ping into action.
I found free broadband ~ explain later

Gattina: Written Afrikaans is v similar to Dutch though ~ I've seen it. Then again written French has lots of words similar to English but French is exceedingly difficult to follow if you're not ready for the onslaught of mushed syllables...
If I studied Dutch now I would be at basic level 1 "mijn naam is Gledwood, ik ben al achtendedrtig jaar oud, ik komme uit London waar we hebben veel winkels ~ een bloemezaak, een kebabhuis en een supermarket ~ och! En we hebben och een garage!" Was that any good, did I make more than 10 errors? That's all I remember from basic Dutch except "in the hospital"
"heef de zuster u temperatuur opgenomen?"
Och! Ik moet nu gaan!!
Tot later!

Gledwood ;-)...

Reeny's Ramblin' said...

Do it Do it Do it :)

Gledwood said...

Syd: sorry I missed your comment because you left it after I brought up this window...

People keep telling me I'm "intelligent" but what does that mean if it's not applied to anything?

I need to be qualified on paper to do something ~ then I could get a decent job. Wahey!!!

Reeny: I will. Need to sort out funding big time. Surely there are European grants/loans/thing for this...?

DUTA said...

I think it's best to concentrate on German first to get a good control of the language.
If you could obtain a grant for entering this project, that would be perfect.
Good Luck!

Gledwood said...

I have to get the German really, really good before I even apply... otherwise I'll get outclasssed by the other applicants. SURELY there is some EU fund for people like me wanting to do something like this?... They chuck enough money everywhere else!!

Gledwood said...

ps Bimbimbie: it was 3:30 when I posted that; you commented about an hour later

my posts and comments always record the time, but other people's sometimes just have dates, I don't know why...

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Gleds, it sounds a wonderful idea and it's greta to read you being so positive. Go for it!

Gledwood said...

I really have to get my German AND French up to scratch... and learn as much Dutch as I can... the application forms, everything, will be in German... Then again this is a course FOR foreigners. But it's like being an overseas student anywhere: you're expected to demonstrate an effective grasp of the language before they'll let you in



Heroin Shortage: News

If you are looking for the British Heroin Drought post, click here; the latest word is in the comments.

Christiane F

"Wir, Kinder vom Bahnhoff Zoo" by "Christiane F", memoir of a teenage heroin addict and prostitute, was a massive bestseller in Europe and is now a set text in German schools. Bahnhoff Zoo was, until recently, Berlin's central railway station. A kind of equivalent (in more ways than one) to London's King's Cross... Of course my local library doesn't have it. So I'm going to have to order it through a bookshop and plough through the text in German. I asked my druggieworker Maple Syrup, who is Italiana how she learned English and she said reading books is the best way. CHRISTIANE F: TRAILER You can watch the entire 120-min movie in 12 parts at my Random blog. Every section EXCEPT part one is subtitled in English (sorry: but if you skip past you still get the gist) ~ to watch it all click HERE.

To See Gledwood's Entire Blog...

DID you find my blog via a Google or other search? Are you stuck on a post dated some time ago? Do you want to read Gledwood Volume 2 right from "the top" ~ ie from today?
If so click here and you'll get to the most recent post immediately!

Drugs Videos

Most of these come from my Random blog, which is an electronic scrapbook of stuff I thought I might like to view at some time or other. For those who want to view stuff on drugs I've collected the very best links here. Unless otherwise stated these are full-length features, usually an hour or more.

If you have a slow connexion and are unused to viewing multiscreen films on Youtube here's what to do: click the first one and play on mute, stopping and starting as it does. Then, when it's done, click on Repeat Play and you get the full entertainment without interruption. While you watch screen one, do the same to screens 2, 3 and so on. So as each bit finishes, the next part's ready and waiting.

Mexican Black Tar Heroin: "Dark End"

Khun Sa, whose name meant Prince Prosperous, had been, before his death in the mid 2000s, the world's biggest dealer in China White Heroin: "Lord of the Golden Triangle"

In-depth portrait of the Afghan heroin trade at its very height. Includes heroin-lab bust. "Afghanistan's Fateful Harvest"

Classic miniseries whose title became a catchphrase for the misery of life in East Asian prison. Nicole Kidman plays a privileged middle-class girl set up to mule heroin through Thai customs with the inevitable consequences. This is so long it had to be posted in two parts. "Bangkok Hilton 1" (first 2 hours or so); "Bangkok Hilton 2" (last couple of hours).

Short film: from tapwater-clear H4 in the USA to murky black Afghan brown in Norway: "Heroin Addicts Speak"

Before his untimely death this guy kept a video diary. Here's the hour-long highlights as broadcast on BBC TV: "Ben: Diary of a Heroin Addict". Thanks to Noah for the original link.

Some of the most entertaining scenes from Britain's top soap (as much for the poor research as anything else). Not even Phil Mitchell would go from nought to multi-hundred pound binges this fast: "Phil Mitchell on Crack" (just over 5 minutes).

Scientist lady shows us how to cook up gear: "How Much Citric?" Lucky cow: her brown is 70% purity! Oddly we never see her actually do her hit... maybe she got camera shy...

And lastly:

German documentary following a life from teenage addiction to untimely death before the age of 30. The decline in this girl's appearance is truly shocking. "Süchtig: Protokoll einer Hilflosigkeit". Sorry no subtitles; this is here for anyone learning German who's after practice material a little more gripping than Lindenstraße!

Nosey Quiz! Have you ever heard voices when you weren't high on drugs?

Manic Magic

Manic Magic

Gledwood Volume 2: A Heroin Addict's Blog

Copyright 2011 by Gledwood