Friday, February 12, 2010

That Snowy Christmas in the Crescent City

So, I guess there is a lot more to add to that snowy Christmas Day in New Orleans. Once we had a pocketful of dope, nothing was gonna stop us from having a great Christmas. It was cold, so wandering around all of our usual spots was out. Thankfully, it had only snowed for about an hour...and the ground was WAY TOO warm for anything to stick.
Even though the snow only lasted about an hour and nothing had accumulate, New Orleans natives will always remember this snow. It is like that in places where it never snows, when a little bit comes down it is remembered for at least 50 years. Especially when it snows on Christmas. Now that I am in a much colder place, the whole memory seems so surreal. Strange how our perspectives change. To me, it seems like the whole incident was just a dream. Maybe it was all the dope that I was on at the time. My memories all seem a lttle fuzzy around the edges.
The rest of the next two days, we spent inside our tiny one bedroom apartment. Liam and I had just weathered quite a storm the past few days, but then those storms were frequent on the horizon back in those days.(Hell, storms can be frequent on my horizon still, maybe I am just a stormy individual.) We had planned on a nice Christmas at home with a spread of appetizers and snacks that we could just munch on all day...roasted pork accompanied by lots of different cheeses, an assortment of dips, all kinds of tiny fried finger foods, and who could forget the sweets! Being that we were addicts, we always had issues with money. We had recieved several Walmart gift cards for Christmas. Since we couldn't get any dope with them, we figured we could use them for our Christmas spread.
But, yesterday on our way to Walmart, we discovered several of the gift cards were missing. Of course I suspected Liam, who did not work and laid around causing trouble all day. I just knew he had done something with them. Probably traded them with Johnny for crack. When Liam started smoking crack, he would just smoke and smoke until he was broke. He usually hid his crack smoking from me, which was a virtually impossible feat because I supported him...and all his habits. He, of course, blamed the whole thing on some of my junky friends who had stopped by earlier to go cop. A fight ensued...Liam, of course, vehemently stuck to his story of innocence. No sense in arguing with a man who believes his own lies. So, after much yelling...we let it go, and went on to Walmart with greatly reduced spending power.
And then, it is snowing on Christmas...and we are outside that wintery morning, waiting for the man, as usual...nothing is gonna bring us down now.
Fond memories here, we spent the whole day holed up inside of our tiny apartment. It was cold because we did not have the gas turned on, and our heat did not work. We did not have hot water either, but who needs a bath. We just snuggled to stay warm...Oh yeah, and we drank and got high to keep warm. Jameson and heroin, a great relaxing combination for a perfect day stuck inside. We made tons of food, setting it out everywhere. We ate, and smoked weed, then ate some more. We shot dope as we felt like it, knowing we had plenty and didn't have to worry about getting sick THAT day. We watched movies on our stolen cable, and drank straight from the fifth. We did not have a phone, so we didn't have to worry about calling our families. And no one stopped by, except for a few drunk friends on their way home from the bar...a breif stop to smoke a bowl on the journey home. A nice, nice Christmas for those days.
Now my Christmases are filled with the family I didn't call that year, as well as tons of toys and wrapping paper. Liam is void in my Christmases now, as is most everything that was part of that life, of those days. I still worry about money at Christmas, but not because I have to buy drugs or my gift cards disappeared but instead because I want to but ALL the toys available for my son. Christmases now often have snow, as we new tradition is always celebrate Christmas at our new family retreat in the mountains of NC. Christmas is now warm and fuzzy, and we always have heat. Looking fondly back on that Christmas, I still prefer the way I celebrate today.

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