And The Rain Came Down

On the first day of spring 2003 the rain came down. I was running, across the road, past the Halal butchers, up Percy Road, over the curb at Haydyn park, past the school. Splodge, splash, slap and an inch of rain would burst up from under my sole. I was drenched through, and cold, but getting warm. Just up ahead there was a boy, hooded and marching off briskly in the drizzle. I slopped up to him and grabbed a hold of his shoulder. “Ace, sorry man, the rain came down and we got stuck under a fucking shelter!”
  “Tchah! Fuck off, b'fore I open up ur face, geez! Making me wait around with hotrocks in muh pockets for nuttin'. Nah! fuck off away from me, tchah!”
  “Ace, I'm sorry......”

At that, Ace turned around and we both stopped . His fist was clenched and I could almost feel the dense slap of it hitting me in the face, the blood falling in the rain, bursting open like an ink splodge and being washed away.
  “I fucking warning you, yeah, you junkie cunt, stay away and don't call me no more! There's ten junkies to every fucking dealer, I don't need to be a waiting for no one.” And then he brought up a huge lumpy gob of phlegm, spat it on me and moved on.

Still not wanting to let the deal go I followed, silently, right up close. As he made to turn the corner he caught a sight of me behind him, turned around and stood up tall.
  “You fucking following me now, geez!!! You want me ta put ya down on da floor? RIGHT FUCKIN' NOW!!!” Ace was up against me, pushing me back down the street with his chest. I reversed with him, wanting to get away but knowing it was too late. He didn't even punch me, just kind of smashed his palm into side/top of my head and knocked my hat off into the rain. I stumbled back, then scrambled clear. Ace didn't pursue. Instead he put his hands in his anorak pocket then bounced off in the wet, hollering insults and bobbing from side to side like the little gangster he thought he was.

The rain is relentless. It is now coming down in big cold blobs. I am running again, back to mum who I left waiting for me outside KFC. She couldn't keep up the chase to get to Ace and so I had gone on alone. On my way back I am fumbling in my pockets for loose change. The streets look slippery. London has never been so wet. A cold, irritating sweat is running off my skin with the rain.

  “Did ya get it?” my mother asks as I hurry into KFC completely sodden. I shake my head. “Wot? He wouldn't serve ya? Ya fuckin' joking me ain't ya Shane?? He didn't give it ya? The Cunt!”
  “Come on, we'll have to see Ritchie”.

Ten minutes later Mum and I are are pulling our jackets tight under a dripping 207 bus stop. I am peering out into the downpour down the road and mum is looking up. We keep seeing Ritchie but when he gets close it's not him.
  “Where is this cunt?” I ask mum
  “Phone 'im Shane, it's well over fifteen minutes! Tell 'im it's fucking pissing down!” I look at her.
  “If he doesn't care we're fucking dying I'm sure a bit of rain won't wet his conscience.”
  “Well fucking tell 'im we're sick, that we'll go somewhere else!” We had our moan, the same moan we always have, the same moan every junkie has, and then we bottled our anger and waited some more.

It is almost noon. At least five buses have splashed by and unloaded their charge. Ritchie still has not arrived. I pick out some loose change and try to dry it. My mother looks extraordinarily angry. I must look the same. “I'll go and phone him.” I say. Mum doesn't even reply.

  “Shane, bro, listen up, you're not gonna believe this, but I'll be 'arf an hour, bro, tops! I'm just cutting da ting up. Serious. Take a coffee, dry off an' I'll beep you in thirty and give you a little bump for free, yeah? I know you like d'em big rocks!”

That I came walking slowly back told mum that not much would be happening soon. She screwed her face up, “''Ow long?”
  “Half an hour. He says it's definite and he'll bump the rocks up.”
Mum's face looked as broken as the sky, kinda grief stricken.
  “Come on, we'll get a coffee and wait.” I said
  “He should fucking pay for it!” She replied

The rain is still coming down. It is not beautiful. The water in the gutters is over-flowing and rushing its way to drains like wild rapids. We are in the railway tavern café dripping wet. My socks are soaked because of the splits in the soles of my shoes. Mum is sipping a cup of scolding hot coffee and staring out into the mist. From every straggle of her blond hair rain drips and seeps in under her jacket. She looks so uncomfortable and makes me feel ten times worse. I turn and stare out into the downpour too. Occasionally we ask each other: “How longs it been?” Thirty minutes pass like an eternity. Cars splodge by and the occasional person runs for shelter. There are two thin girls, shivering, laughing and dripping wet, now taking cover just outside the window. They are blocking our view. A thin, vulgar arse in bright pink leggings - God, my life has led to this. My phone beeps. Text message: I'm around,T.

  “Was that 'im?” Mum asks, jumping to life with the phone.
  “Nah, it's Trooper, he says he's around.”
  “Well lets fucking go to him then! Fuck this waiting shit. That fucking Ritchie won't be fuckin half an hour anyway, fat fucking chance!”
  “Nuh, we've ordered. I'm not doing that. We'd have no fucking dealers left if we worked like that. Anyway, by the time we've phoned Trooper, got to him and waited, we'll have probably seen Ritchie and be home. If he's not here after 30 we'll leave” I rolled mum a cigarette. We kind of used them as timers. After about the tenth mum asked me the time.

  “That's 45 minutes, shane. This cunts taking the piss!”
  “Ok, fuck him. Lets go see T, hey?”
  My mother nods.

We're both squeezed in a phone booth. It smells of urine and stale alcohol. Mum's wet hair is in my face as she tries to listen in down the line.
  “Yeah T, we want three and three.”
Mum pulls an urgent face and holds up four fingers.
  “Hang on, Four... Three B, FOUR W... yeah, four.”
  “Be at Da Barrier in ten.”
  “T, make sure you're there or text, I've no credit on my phone?”
  “I be d'ere.”

Again we are splashing through the wet. Mum is running and I'm walking very quickly. My socks are squelching and my feet feel heavy. Every now and again mum stops to catch her breath. I frantically check the phone not wanting to miss the meet. The rule is addicts wait but dealers never do. They circle once and if you're not there they leave. If that happens the chances are they'll refuse to serve you again. Occasionally you'll get a call “Where are you, bro?” But that's as loving as they get.

When we reach the barrier there is a man there with only one arm. His face is jaundiced, almost flourescent. “You waiting for T?” I ask. He nods. We look at a bench nearby but it is soaked through.
  “Whatcha after, the B?” he asks sniffling and nodding.
  “Both.” I reply
  “Both huh? Nice. Er, Mate, if I give ya two quid d'ya think ya could  sell us a couple of hits of the white? Even just a pipe?” I lie and tell him it's not for me. He flattens his hair back using the rain as gel then starts jittering  and fidgeting about. He's annoying the shit out of me. He's jabbering away talking nothing just to pass the time. Half of what he says is not even to me.
  “It's fuckin hot here. I don't like meeting here. Got pulled 'ere once. Known T long? Fucking hot cunt. D'ya live round ere?  D'ya have a phone?” I tell him I've a phone but no credit. He says something about pressing the hash key, dialling sixes, fours, asterisks and plus signs and like that you can make free calls. “That's what I do.” he says. I don't even ask why he hasn't got a phone. Same as I don't ask why he hasn't got an arm. I know. I know it all. There's only a few stories in this part of town. We stand together in the wet waiting for Trooper to show himself through the rain.

As Trooper rifles through counting the notes I have given him, water is hitting his dark brown hands. “It's too much!” he laughs “You must be fucked, geez!”
  “What you talking about? Four and three = sixty.”
  “Four and three? Whatcha chatting, Bro, I only have two and one! Thats what you ordered, man?”
  “T! Come on!!! when have I ever seen you for that? When? You got nothing else?” T shakes his head “Nuh, I'm all out, gotta reload, bro. Two, three hours.”
  “Fuck! The two? What are the two, white or brown?”
  “Give us that. Will you defininitely be back around later?”
  “Yeah, jus call me bro, call me.”
I take his crumbs, give him mine and the we both head off in opposite directions.

Mum knows something is wrong. The deal had taken too long and she must have seen Trooper handing me notes back. She looks at me like she's on the verge of a breakdown. “Don't tell me he didn't have no fucking white! Please don't fucking tell me that!”
  “There's white, but only two.” I say
Mum's disappointment serves her well. Where she had panicked imagiining there was nothing now two sounds like heaven. Normally she would have had a full grand mal seizure because of that. At a quick pace we splash off home. The rain doesn't matter any more. Fuck the rain. Who cares about a little rain!


It's just gone two. The crack is all gone and I've one small hit left from my bag of smack. We're standing out in the open of cathnor Park. The place is being lashed and blast cleaned by the deluge. This time we are waiting for Dan. Normally we only see Dan when we're desperate, want small deals, or just to keep contact, but this afternoon he was the nearest dealer who would come out in the wet and so he picked up our business.

  “Why does he want to meet us near the fucking swings when it's pissing down!”
  “I don't know??? This is where he meets people... he thinks it safe.”
  “Safe? Two adults hanging about in the rain near a fuckin childrens playground! Silly Cunt!”

As I'm already soaking wet I go and take a seat on the rubber swings. I sway gently back and forth. Mum gives me a horrible look then wanders over and jumps on one too. She looks at me and kind of screws her face up so as not to laugh. In the rain we start swinging. At first slowly and then faster and faster and higher and higher, mother and son, laughing, off our heads on crack cocaine, waiting for a two bob dealer to appear from God knows where and keep us happy. Just as I'm about to go right over the top bar I see a dark shadow slinking past over by the far side of the railing. It's Dan. He looks horrified and completely pissed. I jump off the swing and go and meet him “What da fuck, bro!” he screams “You're hotting the place up wiv dat shit! Fuuuuck!!”
  “Yeah, and you're late AND it's raining AND it's even hotter two adults hanging around a kids park in the rain. That's hot Dan. What's the B like? Your last stuff was shit?”
  “Pfff, 6 outta 10, so so from all reports. But the white's kickin'! Honestly. My phones red for that shit!”

Dan gives a sly little down turn of his hand, slips me the bags and takes my notes. He doesn't count them but puts them straight in his pocket. I clock that, knowing if I'm ever short I can meet him light and he won't realise until later. I sort the little blue bags (heroin) out from the white (crack). The white is ultra small. That's why he said it was good. Whenever a dealer says it's 'good stuff' he's preparing you for a small deal. He notices me feeling the size of the bags and the puzzled look on my face.
  “They're point three, bro, bang on.”
I knew that was bollocks, but so was arguing. You pay your money and take what you get.

Mum must have seen the deal ending and had gotten off the swing. She is now walking slowly up ahead waiting for me to catch her up. “What's the size like?” is the first thing she asks as I join her.
  “Small, but he says it's good stuff.”
  “            ” she says nothing, and I'm thinking the same.

I'm looking out the window, the rain isn't letting up but getting worse. It is settling in for the day. The afternoon is dark and oppressive. I suck in a huge pipe of crack and nearly choke. My throat burns. Before I can say anything mum comes wandering in: “That's fucking shit! It's all fucking soda! God this'll be good. I knew we shoulda waited for T to come back around.”

I load up an extra big hit and suck it down. It makes me feel sick. 'Shit' doesn't mean it's not crack, just it's weak. It still gives enough to settle us down. If it wasn't actually crack there'd be a riot.

Not even an hour later mum is fidgety and irritable. She looks wired sad and sits down pretend watching the TV. I look at her. “D'you want a bit of the B?” She shakes her head. I look at her again. Then at the TV. Then the floor. “Are you thinking the same as me?” I ask. She nods, then says;. “D'you wanna phone?”

We scrape together more money. I probably give mum advance rent for the next year, and then we are pushing our arms into jackets and walking at a fast pace down towards The Church on St Stephens Avenue. The rain has not let up and now the evening is pulling in. The city smells of wet concrete and supper. We stand under the stone arch of the church and wait. A familiar black shadow comes floating by, it's Trooper.. “Just one of you” he says out the side of his mouth. This time Mum slips out I remain waiting. Every five seconds I check to see if she's coming back. Then she is back and looking amazingly happy.

  “Everything ok?” I ask suspiciously
  “Yeah, OK!” She replies handing me my two bags of heroin “The whites all in one, in a fucking piece of tissue, we'll have to divide it at home.”
  “Did he give you extra?” I ask, knowing her sudden happiness has all to do with what came out off Troopers hand and nothing to do with life or the world.
  “Did he fuck! I'd tell you if he had.” I don't press the issue. There's no point.

It's almost midnight, my crack is all finished and I've just taken a fix of smack. In the bedroom I can still hear my mother's lighter flicking and then her pottering around rushing from the hit. I'm pissed off. Her crack lasts a full hour longer than mine. “Just taking it slow tonight,” she lies “d'you wanna do my recycle?”

I make the inevitable mistake of doing that. Taking her days crack pipe, filling it with half a centimetre of acetone, swirling it around, pouring it out on a ceramic tile, setting the liquid ablaze, and then scraping up the brown residue that's left with a razor blade and getting four extra pipe loads of recycle. Of course, that overrides the effect of the smack and thirty minutes later I'm wired again and cooking up another fix.

It is just then that mum comes in. Her eyes are wide as saucers and she begins pacing around as though she's committed some awful crime. I look at her. I am feeling the same and have my wrist tied off and am jabbing for veins in my fist. “Er, Shane, d'you think there'll be anyone on?” she asks.
  “There's always someone on,” I say, “Sinbad'll be on.”
She nods slightly and stands there looking at me with the needle. The she looks at the TV. Then at the floor. “Shane, are you thinking what I'm thinking?”
This time I nod and say “yeah,” pressing my needle down millilitre by millilitre. “We'll have to go out though, Sinbad won't come to the door.”
Mum walks over to the window. She pulls the curtain back to reveal a deep black night. The wind is blowing about and the rain is still falling relentlessly,  being picked out by the street lights. There is nothing out there but wet and cold. The city is asleep... almost. We make our call, slip into wet jackets, then scurry downstairs and out into the night.

On the second morning of spring 2003 the rain came down. I was running, down Uxbridge Road, past the burnt out postbox, under the bridge, across the lights, onto the grass. My shoes were sinking down in the mud and I was slipping to meet my man. Sinbad. Shepherds Bush Green. Two and Two. The last dance of the night.

Hope Everyone's well... the post is a bit scrappy in places but I'll edit it over the days... Love & Thoughts as ever, Shane. X

**Note 1: B = brown. Heroin; W = white. Crack**
**Note 2: What is described in the above post is an exceptional day. From my experience (in London), scoring is simple and straightforward. 90% of the time it is done and dusted within 30 minutes. Most my dealers had cars, bikes or little scooters. It'd be one call and 10-15 minutes later the bell would be ringing.


Tonyoneill said...

I'll be first-

Fucking beautiful bit of writing there Shane. Really evocative. You really nail it man, you took me there. I came here because I was hungry for something, and you totally gave me what I needed before i even knew what it was...

Keep slugging man.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hey Tony,

First or last your words here mean the world and are treasured. It's really nice to have that connection and that history with you.

For my next post I think I'm going to highlight your own work. I thought of doing that before, but wanted it to be more genuine than just wooing a writer I hardly knew. So I put it off, but I think now is the time and it will be a genuine appreciation and done through respect and thanks and admiration. Also, I think the readers here will really get off on your stuff and they've a right to know about your own work.

Anyway, thanks once again for all you say. Whether you realise it or not, it's such little things that keep me slugging and feeling good for tomorrow...

Take care, T... Shane. x

Sarcastic Bastard said...

You are such a writer. Really. I am always so moved by your words.

Just curious, how is your mom? What is her life like these days?

Please stay safe. You are loved.


Sweden said...

i hate dealers, such a pain in the ass to score. Luckily for me i got hooked up from a drug friend to this guy, he sells out of his store, he is there in between 8am-7pm everyday except sundays, and he ALWAYS has what i want. Never again calling dealer after dealer, waiting, fucking around. Just hop on the bus $60 in my hand, i'm in i'm out. Easy breezy.

btw aren't you writing a book? as soon as it's available i'm buying it. You're writing is beautiful, just like you.

Sweden said...

i used to be able to get high of an Oxycontin 40 mg now i need 160 mg sucks, so much more money. $80 every second day.

Wildernesschic said...

Shane this is brilliant
So wonderfully written, I don't know how you cope with it all...all the time.
I wish that the governments would get some sense and legalise it all .. everything. Then the drugs could be quality, we would educate people as to what the drugs actually do for you. People could make their own, informed decisions about how and what they want to feel like. In return, they tax it, reaping the rewards rather than the shady dealer. Just like they do with the most dangerous drug Alcohol ..Oh and its friend Nicotine.
Sending love Ruth xx

_Black_Acrylic said...

Hi Shane

So good to see the Memoires return, and the new post is compulsive. As Tony put it "you took me there", feeling all the wet and cold and frustration.

Ben x

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya SB,

Oh Thank You.X

My mum...

She turned 60 this year and apart from a few little health scares recently and being overweight she's fine (fingers crossed as she has a small op soon).

She doesn't drink, hasn't touched heroin for 8 years and has had no crack for 3 years. She is still on methadone maintenance but is making huge efforts now to even stop that. When I spoke to her last week she was on 10mg per day (which is a laughable amount. She started on 140mg a day 10 years ago).

She's also going through or has gone through the menopause. That was very strange, because knowing her and the things she got up to and how open/vulgar she could be concerning sex, it was weird to suddenly see her disgusted by it and putting her dildo to rest in the loft.

What is equally strange is to hear her talk about doing community work and every wednesday or something she volunteers her help at an OAPs day centre. To that from crack is very bizarre for me and sometimes sad because I know it represents her aging and no longer being able to handle the effects of such drugs on her body. BUt it's not not taking drugs which is sad - that's a good thing - just the aging that it shows up, that she is that little closer to the grave.

I think she's found a contentment in life, although I think she is a little lonely living alone. My brother and eldest sister are not too far from her though and both visit and look after her. Other than that she has two cats to keep her company.

Considering the life's she's led I think she's doing pretty well.

Love returned SB and thanks as ever, Shane. XXX

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Sweden,

That was a very exceptional day. 95% of the time it would be one phone call and fifteen minutes later all would be fine. (I should really add that as a footnote).

Some dealers are extremely nice, some even caring, and others are arrogant little shits who turn up just to slap a sick junkie and find any excuse to refuse him gear. There's some reall sadist dealers I've known like that. but they don't last long... no-one will protect someone like that and so the first addict arrested for possession gives up the name and number (even if it wasn't them they had scored it off).

No one who has followed this site regularly will ever have to buy any book I have published... it'll be free to you guys with 'Love & Thanks' scrawled in the back.

Fuck, 40 bucks a day, it's a lot. Pretty much about the same as a smack habit (depending on which state your in). On the last post here one person said how they'd quit and how great it was to have money in their pocket. I remember having the same feeling when I quit for 5 months. i felt rich and really enjoyed splashing out on DVD's, clothes, books, etc. A really nice memory.

Keep Safe & Well & Beautiful Sweden...

All My Love, Shane. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Ruth,

We have to cope and that makes it easy. On paper it's tough and exhausting and in reality also, but you don't feel that.

It's like having a kid, some one that needs feeding, taking to school, collecting, bathing, putting to bed, etc. It's exactly like that. But because you have to do it, you don't feel the exhaustion. Sometimes it all gets too much, but you can't just say "fuck it!"

Love returned ya Sexy Bitch!!! (I'm only playing!! lol)

Shane. XXX

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Ben,

Yes, it was nice posting again and especially because it came naturally and not because people were expecting it. So I will go on like that for the moment, post when I feel it and when I've something nice to share, but never just because it's a blog and blogs must be updated at least once a week.

The nice thing about Memoires now is that word seems to have gotten around about it, and even if I don't post so often the readers remain and the site has as many hits a day as it always had. It's a great compliment in a way, as it's a compliment that you read and comment.

Hope your health is still on the mend, Love and Wishes, Shane. X

Tonyoneill said...

Hiya Shane

Well, wow that would be great, but no pressure! Youre a really good bloke, and I appreciate that.

I was reading what you wrote to SB about your mum, and laughed a little bit about the 10ml of methadone because I did the same thing when I decided to come off. I cut down from 90 to 10, and I remember how weird it was to get that tiny little medicine bottle with a splash of juice in it.

Anyway after working my way down for the hope of an easy cluck, the weekend I did it I got fucking food poisoning. So literally the minute I came off methadone I was laying in bed puking my guts up for the weekend, hallucinating, fever, the whole bit. Hows that for shitty luck? (blame a dodgy Dalston chicken burger)

Still, I actually think that there's no easy way to do it. Even after being on 10ml for so long, I think I was depressed for about 6 months afterwards.... real "sky is falling" stuff. Still wonder how I didnt relapse, sometimes.

Wildernesschic said...

Aw shucks Shane you made me blush :)
Really pleased to hear about your mum, I have often wondered if you had a good relationship with her after you grew up and reading this post, showed me that you obviously did..
I am pleased for her that she is well, it cannot be an easy way of life as you get older..although saying that .. My plan for old age and loneliness is to try it :) as I loved the morphine drip after my C sections..sending more love LOL xx

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hi again Tony,

No, there's no pressure. Doing a little spot on you would come naturally I can feel it.

Methadone. Believe it or not, but at one stage here in france I was on 5mg every three days! My doctor kept pestering me to stop, which I never did as I always knew I wasn't finished with H and would one day be glad that I was already in the system and could then say I've had a slip and have my dose raised again without the wait of getting into treatment.

I got down to that 5mg (from 150mg a day) by cutting down 10mg every fortnight. Once I got below 30mg a day I didn't feel shit, but I didn't want to do anything other than watch films - that's all. Film after film after film. I stopped painting, didn't want to go out... everything became a chore. Film however offered up another escape. Gradually I started realising that all the films I were buying were about smack and it wasn't long after that that I decided to test my french out "Excusez-moi, Je cherche l'heroine?" It turned out I was quite successful! haha

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


That was naughty of me!!! lol

After my mother stopped drinking (and I had got past my teenage years) we'vegotten on very well. There were always arguments, some huge ones, but a few days later it was forgotten. The drugs helped. We were both living a life of addiction and for the first time in our lives had the exact same needs and desires. I think the intimacy of that situation led to a very unique bond between us - which lasts to this day. XXX

Slappit Harry said...

Hi Shane, its the 1st time i've commentated but i've been reading your entries for well over a year now. Only you could have written this, its brilliant and i know it's you in every other sentence. I especially loved the part about the guy with no arm.

Anonymous said...

Im a 42 mom of 4..Havent used heroin or crack in over 6 yrs..Been on Methadone maintenance in that time..I can relate to my 'ripping and running' days when I read what you write..
It brings it back to me to the point that my hands actually start to ache..(That would be the only viable veins I had.I am a strawberry blonde with crappy veins that roll)Anyhow..I have to say you are an amazing writer..I have NEVER read anything like what you write..You actually bring your reader on your journey with you...I just wonder if you realize the gift you actually have!!Take Care..Your friend across the pond in the US..Chrissy

Sweden said...

It is true you have a helluva lots of cash IF you don't have a little drug habit to support, the thing is though what would i do with the cash? Buy shoes, or clothes, i have lots of clothes (25 pairs of jeans, 30 pairs of shoes, 350 DVDs) i don't NEED anything really, i just want. I'm enjoying getting high, i dont see a diff between scoring drugs or buying a new phone just cause it's oh so cool to have an i-phone.

Steven said...

This was a great write and brought back lots of memories for me of when I was at my worst...glad them days are over. Keep writing.

JoeM said...

I didn’t think this was scrappy at all. I was actually thinking how it flowed just perfectly, not a word over or under, the end returning us to the beginning. I think it comes so naturally it would actually be harder for you to write badly.

You should make a video of this story printed out (artily) with Lou Reed’s Perfect Day as the ironic soundtrack. I heard that the ‘you’ in ‘I’m glad I spent it with you’ is Heroin so maybe not that ironic…

Here’s fellow Scot Susan Boyle’s version. Finally a cover version worthy of the original. Wouldn’t it be great if it was Christmas number one? Better still, a special duet with Groundskeeper Willie.

We keep seeing Ritchie but when he gets close it's not him.

Waiting for Ritchie.

I wonder if Beckett was a junkie. I bet an academic could go through Godot and make a case for that.

I was going to ask if it was an asset having a mother who was also an addict but you‘ve sort of answered that. Also, you‘re always saying how you think you won‘t live to an old age, but she‘s survived H/Crack/alcohol. So you can too.

One more of my Junkies for Dummies questions:

All this running out and having to desperately score - couldn’t you just save some up and get more while you’re still comfortable and it’s not life or death (i.e. withdrawal)? I've always wondered why we never see addicts scoring when they don't really need it. Is it just an economic thing? Or would you just use up any extra you had?

Is that Junkies for REAL Dummies?

Abigail Winthrope (Mrs) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Abigail Winthrope (Mrs) said...


Unknown said...

Great post,yet again.I wish we had that many dealers in my town so if one hasnt anything there are plenty of others to call. Still lets me save cash if my contact has nothing. Every cloud as the saying goes

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Slappit Harry,

Thank you very much, that's kind. Keep reading the posts I never make and I'll keep breaking my promise to write them.

If you've been here a year, that sentence won't confuse you at all.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Chrissy,

Sorry for the delay in replying I'm working from internet cafés at the moment.

Have you put on weight with the methadone? It's so awful for that and one side effect they never mention. I put on tons of weight in my first five months and then fell back to smack and lost it, gained it, lost it, gained it. I'm on a low dose of meth at thye moment so it's not too bad, but the cravings for food from a proper dose, god... it's terrible.

Thanks for your compliments Chrissy, a few say the same, but I only see errors in my writings and things I didn't capture well. Occassionally I'll enjoy a piece I've written... normally when I'm so stoned I cannot make any sense of it. Haha

Love returned, Shane. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


You're right. I'm a sucker with money and whether I spend it on smack or continental coffees and chocolate, it all slips through my fingers anyway. If it's gonna do that it's best at least not to be able to remember it... that's where regrets come from: memory. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Cheers Steven,

Sorry I've no more words but am posting from a café and must get on. Even my friend below you is gonna get the brush off, haha.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Joe, I'm gonna skip straight to the Junkies for Dummies, not that I think that's a dummy question - I'd ask the same.

Most addicts live hand to mouth. They make their 20quid a day, daily and cannot buy for tomorrow. That'd account for about 90%. Also, yes, even if they did manage, you do use more if it's there. Most addicts just end up with enough gear to not be sick, so it'd be very difficult to budget heroin once it's there.

of the other 10% yes, when possible they'll buy in bulk. I done that for years, scoring twice a week, sometimes only once a week. The BIG problem here is if you buy your weeks worth and it is weak stuff. To get around that you can buy a little and if it's good buy the rest. That already starts costing more, and if it's not very good you have to then repeat it until you find good stuff. By then all your money could be gone, because you only economize by buying in bulk and pay full price everytime you want just a taster. Even if you buy a taster and it's good, dealers are changing their heroin every other day. Often, what was good in the morning has all bee bought up and you buy your bulk lot only to find it's different stuff. There is a reason for this quick turnover with dealers. 1) street dealers are smalltime and don't have the cash themselves to buy huge amounts so have to keep reloading. 2) Even if they've the money, they never want to be in possesion of more than a certain amount as if they're are stopped or caught it will be a lengthy jail sentence. Buying small, the chances are if they are stopped they would only be in possession of enough to say it was personal use or for a friend. That stops a trafficking charge, which is a serious offence compared to the petty offence of possession for personal use.

So most addicts do not wait until the point of withdrawal, but score daily because that's all they can do. They are maybe 8 - 12 hours away from junk sickness.

The remaining bunch try their best to buy ahead, but that's not always possible or wanted depending on the quality of gear that is around. The very lucky addicts, with no financial problems at all, will do as you suggest.

I hope that answers your question and isn't fuzzy as i've no time to read over it. It's type and post today!

Take care Joe and we'll speak more soon... x

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Jon,

Fuck, I took it that it was like that all over britain (except smaller towns). In one borough of London I had over 20 different dealers. There was only two days in 5 years I couldn't score and that was due to the Afghan war and US troops on the border who had accidently blocked the supply routes out. At that time junkie friends, said it was the first time in 25 years they had money and could score. Move city!!!

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


If I repent it would mean spending an eternity somewhere within the vicinity of you... never! I'd rather burn for my pleasures. X said...

Hey Shane..
YES!!The weight gain from the methadone is atrocious.I have gained 40 lbs that are just IMPOSSIBLE to lose..I really don't eat enough to be the weight I 330 lbs and 4ft 9 inches...(NONO,just I am 5'7 "175..yes,overweight...My last babies were born 3 yrs ago and 14 mos ago..(Luckily they did not have withdrawals too badly..The 3yr old was a preemie,so they told me he had no "opiate receptors"and my little girl(14months) had one week of 'posturing" and a "tightening up"..but very mild..After the last pregnancy my dose was up to 195mg..I am currently down to 135mg/daily..I want to get down to 80mg and then see if losing weight gets any easier..I could see if I was loading up on junk food all day..But I eat relatively well and I really don't overeat..Ya know,my counselor at the clinic says that weight gain is NOT a side effect of the methadone..Bullshit..If she sat in the parking lot and watched,she would rarely see anyone 'supermodel' skinny..(well,anyone that has been on it longterm)I am pretty lucky though,for me,Methadone was like a 'miracle'..I know I am 'hand-cuffed 'to it..But once I was at a stable dose(120),I really lost my cravings for dope ..I could probably write a book on my life,lol..I was a nurse who fell in love with PERCOCET and subsequently Oxycontin..which lead me to my former best friend "Mr. Heroin"..We 'parted 'company when my best friend o'ded and her 12 year old daughter found her..anyhoo..Take care,I look forward to your next installment..Your writing really is phenomenal!! If anyone asked,I'd have to say YOU are my favorite author!!

Anonymous said...

p.s. OOps Im sure you figured out Chrissy086600 and ChrissyOwens is one in the

Paul Curran said...

Excellent post, Shane. The urgency really comes across. Great to see my old street too, and to walk around those parts looking at them from your perspective.

Sarcastic Bastard said...

I love your reply to the pinhead known as Abigail. I'm going with you, Shane. I don't want to sit around on clouds and hold hands and sing Kumbaya and shit. Laugh.

Love you, brother.

fallen said...

Hey Shane,this really sums up a day in the life of a junkie(whatever the weather!)I read it out loud to my boyfriend and we laughed at the same old deals,dealers and even meeting at the barrier.The gear around here is so shit that I may finally,unintentionally, become clean.Reading your writing is one of the only positive things I do at the moment and you bring a smile to my face.P.S As a mum of two Aged 15 and 20 it was nice to hear about your mum,kinda gives me hope.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


Hey again, and thanks for your compliments it's very kind and always nice to hear such things. X

The weight gain. The other thing I've noticed about it is that you gain weight in really strange places too. I can spot most methadone patients immediately because of it. It seems to build up all around the face and completely round out the head. Also kinda makes the body chunky. It's a strange fat and yes, very difficult to lose.

I have a theory why 'weight gain' is never listed as a side effect which is to do with many addicts being quite self aware of image, many even enjoying the thin junkie look that can come with addiction. I think if it was advertised that methadone will bloat you up like an air balloon, that many would avoid even longer getting into treatment, or would really only do so out of pure desperation.

My mother, who's been on MMT for almost ten years now, is unrecognisable to the person who first went into treatment. She's gained so much weight that it's hard to believe.

Anyway, that's enough talking about such horrible things!!! lol

Hope you're well Chrissy, and thanks once again for your comments. All My Love Shane. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


Hey Paul... it's great to see you here and as soon as I'm back online at home I'll get my arse on over to yours too.

It's always strange reading about the streets where you've lived. Whenever I do I always feel kinda famous. "I live there!!!" I'll scream "I know that place!!!"

It's ridiculous, I know, but my nature's that. haha

Hope you're well Paul and until very soon, Shane. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


Abigail, oh, I know her from places. She's quite harmless... dead.

Actually she's one of the characters from Waiting for John (invented and written by Joe M above). X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Fallen,

I think it's your first comment here???? If so WELCOME!!! XXX If not, excuse me.

It's nice that you feel reading my words is a positive thing - a few others say the same and of course there are those who disagree entirely.

Of course there's hope for you as a mother, I'm sure you don't even need it.

All My Thoughts and Love, Shane. X

Hey Shane,this really sums up a day in the life of a junkie(whatever the weather!)I read it out loud to my boyfriend and we laughed at the same old deals,dealers and even meeting at the barrier.The gear around here is so shit that I may finally,unintentionally, become clean.Reading your writing is one of the only positive things I do at the moment and you bring a smile to my face.P.S As a mum of two Aged 15 and 20 it was nice to hear about your mum,kinda gives me hope.

Anonymous said...

Hey Shane-
I was laughing as I read your post..You are so right about the "weight gain"..It is in exactly those places(Neck,face,overall "chunk" funny thing,I was lying on my couch last night,and I put my hands on my neck..and I thought.." would take a really big pair of hands to strangle that neck"LOL..And as I watch the people that go in and out of the clinic,you can tell the ones on for a longtime...They all have the same shape..
and you are so right..if they told me about the weight gain..I would not of signed on...or I would of added 'a side of coke' into my early treatment program..(LOL..That may of defeated the purpose..hah??)That's one of the main reasons I am slowly weaning myself off..I want my body back..Plus,running to that damn clinic 5x a week sucks..I owe them a back balance,so I no longer have my take-homes..It has been over 6 yrs,but from the time I open my eyes,the first thing I think is when I can "tighten" up..
I was thinking about what makes you such a good writer..One reason is your honesty..(Which,as an honesty was used only when it would serve me !)But you are brutally honest and not afraid to 'put it out there'..That is so rare..You can express the moments we all have experienced,in such a clear way..but with a twist,and it somehow touches the readers emotions..(If that makes sense)..You also give hope in situations that scream helplessness..I have been in those situations more times than I can count!
Truth be told,my one dream when I was a little pig-tailed ,freckle-faced,innocent redhead,was to be a great writer..My home-life was pretty much what you would expect from an alcoholic dad and submissive mom.(who hid her bottle of vodka in the toilet..)So I think I lived my life in "fantasy-land" or with my nose always in a book..(Oh ya I also wanted to be an astronaut and a brain surgeon..but I was no-good at think you have the talent,I wish I had..
Sorry I wrote so much..It is nice being able to write down my feelings,without adding bullshit...
Take Care and stay safe!
Chrissy xx

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hey again Chrissy,

Oh, you can leave comments as long or as short as you like - however you want. That's never a problem if you leave a long message. Not at all.

Secondly, if I'm a little late ansxering it's not because I've forgotten you, but because at the moment my electricity has been disconnected adn so I have no internet at home. I'm posting from Cafés until that's fixed.

The electricity is a long problem, but has nothing to do with me. Between my landlord and the owners of the building there has been some kind of misunderstanding and no electricity has been paid for in 3 years (I've only been here 11 months). Anyway, we're all trying to fix it, but at some stage one of them will have to pay the outstanding debt. While they're disputing I will not pay rent until it is cleared up. Hopefully by the end of the week it'll be fixed (it's been a full week now I'm in the dark and cold).

Yep, you're right, the people all take the same shape. When I first went into MMT and started eating properly and gaining weight, it was actually something nice. I was really enjoying food and it even felt good to have taken some weight. But then it went on and on and on and got to the point where I felt really unhappy about my size. I never got huge, but for me it seemed like that because I'd never had a tubby belly or breasts before! lol The good news, I've now lost it all again, and it does get easier to do it when you're on a lower dose. Anyway, that's enough about weight gain... haha. Talking of such things isn't very Rock n' Roll! lol

No Methadone take-aways, that's tough. Yeah, it's a bore and a chore to have to go to them places everyday. They also scare me, some of the people I see. I always leave feeling bad. Luckily I do get tak-aways. Two weeks at a time. So it's not too bad.

Chrissy, I'm not finished but my time is running out here and I need to get through some mails. So I'll be back in the next day or so to reply to the second half of your comment.

My Love and Thoughts, Shane. XXX

ps: God, when my mother was drinking she had bottles hidden everywhere. Every two weeks we'd do bottle dumping runs. Three kids and Mum with two bags each.

Anonymous said...

Looking forward to the rest of the post..I know what it is like to have no electricity or at other times,no hot water or heat(Those cold showers really blow).Luckily,I now live in the house my parents own,so the only thing I have to pay is those utilities and rent when I have it..(They are just elated to 'have their daughter back)I still live week to week though and struggle probably more than average..Here is the kicker,I was a nurse,pulling in lots of cash..My love of "all things OPIATE" put a 'smashing' end to my career..Oh well..That is a long story too..I feel bad you are in the dark tonight!!That does suck!Hey BTW my email is u want u can always email me there!!
oh yea..I was also curious..How much say ,one months rent costs in France or Britain??I will have to convert what you tell me to US dollars,so I could be working on that equation for I always wondered how expensive it would be to live in Europe!
Take Care!!
Chrissy x

Anonymous said...

sheesh..again,that(the above post..LOL) was not supposed to post as anonymous..It is from me..Chrissy

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hi Chrissy, still in the dark but making the most of it. When this is over I will then want to be recompensated for the inconvenience and extra expense of eating outside. It's going to get very messy. Hopefully I'll have light on monday, but no sooner.

Rent in France. For a studio apartment I pay:
422.00 EUR = 570.00 USD per month

But for the same price you can find a one or two bedroom apartment.

In the UK it varies. For an average wage earner between £350 - £500 a month. (£400 = $636). But in the UK we've many private landlords and you can find rooms for as low as £50 per week. In france the law concerning private renting is much more strict and it's difficult for a landlord to just rent a room for a cash agreement between him and the tenant. 95% of landlords then rent through property agencies, so it's all above board and not bargain rooms as are everywhere in the UK.

In Britain, I could leave one room in the morning and be in a new one by the afternoon. As long as I have the deposit and my rent there's no questions asked. The money talks. In France, oh!!! It's awful. The Man Who Looks Like Life describes a little of my flat hunt here.

Ok... I've still to finish answering your last comment, but you'll have to settle with that for now. I'm in debt to you as well now... I owe you words.

Take care Chrissy and we'll speak more soon, Love Shane. X

Anonymous said...

Hi Shane!
Good to know that it won't be much longer without lights!I did not think to realize that you can't make your meals there,let alone store food..You better raise some hell!If you lived closer I'd make you a hot meal!
The apartment(flat) rates are comparable ,(a touch less expensive)to what we pay in the closest city (Waterbury ,Connecticut)Maybe 750 USD for a 2 bedroom duplex..Now ,I live a few towns out,in a more rural area,where the same apartment goes for 950-1050 USD..As I said before I have it pretty good,thanks to "Dear Old dad"lol..He owns his own business and he bought up properties when Clinton was in office and everyone was loaded in the US..Now,everyone is practically in "bread lines"..I know at least 10 people unemployed thru no fault of their own(His business is still going well..he is an engineer and designs things for medical industries)..I saw a cable show about apartment hunting in France,and they did not address the cost..when I saw you were from there,I figured you would have always been fascinated with the area you are from(UK and France,Italy too(Rome actually)But have never been there..Some day I hope!!
Looking forward to reading the "words" you have for me!!I am going to reread "The Man who looks like life"..There was another post you wrote,I have to look back and find it,but it had to do with a childhood friend of yours..What you wrote was like reading a story from my life..I have had several experiences that are eerily similar to yours(only Im take lil guy Aidan(he just turned 3)is stirring from his nap,if I don't get him..he while walk out the front door naked!!Toddlers!!LOL Take care ,Chrissy XX

Gledwood said...

I can't imagine doing gear and crack with my Mum.

I reckon she'd be up for some MDMA though... O, xcept she's got angina. Uppers + a heart problem, probably not a good combination.

Heroin shortage in London's got really bad. Literally nothing even half decent about.

If you have anything to say, I'd appreciate your 2p worth, people are going mental. Look at the comments!

Shane L said...

Hi All,

Still without electricity so will answer in the next day or so. Fingers crossed I should be reconnected on monday and will then have two weeks to sort the mess out before being disconnected again.

Thoughts to all, Shane. X

Lady Anon said...

hello there Shane, sorry to abruptly jump on your blog bandwagon. I have been driven screaming onto the internet by the massive heroin drought in SE London/England/everybloodywhere. I am trying to get some vicarious kicks from reading about drugs instead of actually doing them. Huh.

Anyway I just wanted to say that I thought your writing was gripping and for at least ooh...three minutes I wasn't thinking about how shit tomorrow is going to be on green. Believe me I thank you for those three minutes!

Anyway, hope you are okay without electricity, my advice..start burning things!


Anonymous said...

Wow..I read the article about the shortage in the UK..I was under the impression that it was easily available there..When I used,It all depended on who got busted,but somebody was always ready and willing(if you had the cash)I also remember once seeing a program on t.v. where they handed out heroin to addicts(legally)in Great Britain.. They duped us!!
Shane,at least Monday is around the corner..and I think you are like 7hrs ahead of me "time wise "!!Take Care!
Chrissy x

Gledwood said...

Chrissy, diamorphine is only prescribed to a few hundred addicts in the UK. It's only ever given to people who have tried ànd failed at methadone and/or subutex or rehab, at least twice. There were trial schemes that were kept really quiet, again tiny. And I have never lived in the right catchment area (seemingly). I have asked after it again and again. There were signs a couple of years ago that the govt might go for it and "roll it out across the country" but in the present climate (and with a right-of-centre govt) that ain't going to happen.

Shane are you alright?

Anonymous said...

Thankyou Gledwood!!I would imagine in order to get diamorphine,there is a strict process where you have to prove you have done the methadone etc...The prorocol here in US to get in the methadone maintenance(when I got on it 6 yrs ago)was not the easiest thing,I just got lucky with a social worker,who took a liking to me,and "fast-tracked me through the system..
Shane-I hope you are well!! I enjoy getting your messages!
Take care..Chrissy xx

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Gledwood, when I was in London Chelsea and Westminister Hospital were doing a diamorphine scheme. As you can imagine it was extremely limited and extremely selective. I had a friend who managed to get on, but to get on you had to fulfil 9 different criteria. I don't know them all but being HIV positive was one, still injecting in the arms was another (they won't give amps to anyone going in the leg), and not only having failed methadone maintenance, but that the drug didn't agree with you. So really, to get on you have to be dying anyway... we'll we're all dying, but they want proof!!! lol

Anyway, it's no great thing because the diamorphine is a shitty high and not like street smack at all. My friend would trade me his ampoules for bags of smack (I only done it twice.. just to try). It's not really a gouche low I got of it, but more something between subutex and methadone. It also gave me awful headaches. Ok, it's better than methadaone, but still is not the solution.

Maybe in higher doses it would be more effective, but it's a treatment to hold you and no more. There will never be a treatment that will give you a gouche... never. Even if they subscribed Afghan smack from your favourite dealer, they'd give it out in such low doses that he'd still be in business.

I'll reply about the shortage after a while as I'm in an internet cafe. Last day without electricity and passing the time here until the chemist opens and I can collect my script.

Until later... All My Thoughts, Shane. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Lady Anon,

Oh, I've already started burning things... I'm a caffeine addict also and cannot go without at least ten cups of coffeee aday. So I set fires in a large saucepan and hold a smaller pan over it with water. Then I open the window and let the smoke from a million crappy authors out the window. Revenge!

I will phone my old dealers about the shortage and see if any of them are holding and what's going on. If you ever read this late reply let me know where you are in London and maybe I can set something up from here. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Chrissy, you like Italy also? I lived in Naples for 8 months. That's what I do: fall in love, move to other countries and return home broken hearted.

My time Naples was just before I got into smack. I was 21 (i think) and addicted to subutex. I travelled with a huge amount and lost my nerve on the plane and flushed it all down the toilet. And I was fucking lucky because passing through italian customs with my pupils so restricted the place looked dark, the police pulled me and gave me a full strip and body search. Apparently the sniffer dogs had yapped at me as I passed them.

I never experienced any physical withdrawal as I was doing it two, maybe three weeks of every month. I couldn't get enough to gain a proper physical habit.

Anyway, coming back from Naples (earniong my money there playing pool for the local mobster!! really) I lost mùy subutex contact, lost a girlfriend, then a wife, then found my best friend dead and then I was phoningh dealers daily for heroin. I was actually using before, so it would have happened anyway... I was on that road, I knew it, and I didn't want to come back. I still don't.

I will write of my italian months... it was really the last period where I lived life chemical free. I didn't really enjoy. Just wanted to get home and get low and nod off as the evening came in.

Electricty back on tonight... hurahh! No more liver paté sandwiches... I can go back to microwaveable cheeseburgers and 5 minute lonely meals. Perfect...


Anonymous said...

Hi Shane!
Looking forward to reading about Italy thru your eyes!!Two places in Italy I am drawn to..Rome(no idea why I just love the pictures of the Vatican and the area)and surprisingly Naples!! That is where my paternal grandmother is from(She is still kicking 96 and still wears 'high heels' and gets her hair done..LOL) How long ago were you there??Oh,I always mean to ask..Ever been to USA??
Oh yumm..Liver pate sandwiches!!LOL..I am glad tonight you will be a bit more comfortable with electricity..Do u have internet access at your place?? We have internet cafes here too..but it seems access to the net via 'free wireless service) is everywhere..
I had to laugh..My other big addiction is also caffeine..I have coffee as soon as I get up and drink either Coke or Diet Coke all say(I think this contributes to the weight staying on..Oh well..
Have a good day(night for you now!) Take Care xx

The Total Impostor said...

Huge heroin drought in UK is due to massive opium crop failure in Afghanistan, caused by some fucking funky fungus (see: users). It's even getting pretty hard to get in Liverpool, which is like saying you can't find any trees in the woods. This drought should be reaching most of Europe within the next month. Whose dreaming of a Brown Xmas?

Lady Anon said...

Well hello Shane,

Thanks for caught me at a pivotal pissed off moment as I just wasted £25 on shit!!!

I hadn't tried to score for 3 DAYS because I knew there was nothing around, but!

....and I got 1 decent tester, but the bastard had sold out by the time I went bk for more...

then went to miracle kid who said he was on again, this time thought oooooh, lets just get 3.....

Now I'm in the frame of mind where I just want.....want...want...

...And want

But there's Rien!!

Rien de rien!!

Am in SELond...know somebody???


Anonymous said...

i send you kisses,your work is amazing,the writing and the art,it somehow made me cry- must be those damn emotions rearing their head in this hideous time of drought
shane you are a beautiful man with a beautiful soul please dont die just yet
L x

lizzydripping said...

i fuckin' love you

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


The dope here in france is certainly not from Afghan, probably Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia.But there's a permanant drought here of anything that's even half decent. I constantly repeat that, but until someone used to UK gear tries french stuff they will not understand.

To get a gouch here I shoot up 2 full grams over three injections. That's 20 point 2 bags of UK stuff! And I still get nothing like the hit from one injection of the stuff back there. It's insane.

I remember years ago a spanish dope friend telling me that in spain he used to do 7 grams a day. I dismissed him as speaking complete nonsense, it'll kill you, even the biggest smack head in the world. But actually he was telling the truth, only of those 7 grams only about .3 was actually heroin. they must have the same stuff there as here. I'll do a post on french smack soon.

Anyway, hope you're well, all my thoughts Shane.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Lady Anon, I could probably set you up something in Shepherds Bush? It means you'd have to travel but I think that'll be possible. Email me if you'd like to know more... setting something up like that online is a bit dodgy! lol

@ any reading policemen: I'm innocent! X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Anonymous L,

Oh, thank you, that's very nice. No, I won't die just yet... maybe tomorrow, but today I've things to do. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


That's sweet of you to say, and makes the world a little less ugly. X

lizzydripping said...

shane just to say i am both lizzydrippng and anonymous L,the first comment i could not work out how to leave my name- spent most of the day reading your posts, you have a real talent for writing, any chance of making a book? holding and reading a book feels so good the feel of paper is much nicer and than the feel of a computer and you could make yourself some money.
on one of your posts you said you are leaving France are you coming back to Blighty then? ,i lived in Amsterdam for 10years and coming back here was a big decision but the hardship of living in cold dark squats managing a raging crack and smack habit was hard but fun but i realized if i had stayed i could have possibly shuffled off this mortal coil,
keep writing shane your words are like music of the human soul,misery and all.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Lizzy,

yeah I figured it was you but wasn't sure. A book. Well there's lots of talk and there's been quite a bit of interest since writing online here, so I guess at some time there will be a book. I think my first book will not be the writings here, but other seperate things I'm working on. I'm working on many projects at the moment adn I think next year will be a good one.

Back to London. No. I've no plans to do that, but I may be chased out of france soon and so will have to find somewhere to go and where I can score.

I love london. I would want to be nowhere else. But the problem is that London is very bad for me creatively. I'd end up with a fulltime, 24/7 habit again and then all the work I've been doing over the past 18 months will go to shit for another five years, and I'm not sure how many more five years I will continue to have. So I'd like to stay someplace where the smack isn't too rife and where I cannot earn quick bucks for quick bags. I try to balance my addiction and my writing, so I can do both without one fucking up the other. It kinda works at the moment. Also, I think there's police warrants for my arrest in London... well, actuall I know there are! LOL

Have to remain a fugitive.


lizzydripping said...

no hope of a habit here at the moment what with this drought! i've been using for years and dont ever remember it being this bad-the thing is you see i have a 'proper' job and its hard going to work rattling,thank goodness for the green stuff!
its funny i lived in most of western europe at different times with a habit and nowhere feels so dirty and skanky as here.
do you ever come back then to see your mum?
best wishes mate
L x

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Lizzy,

Anyone with any juice in that drought must be fucking dying. last drought I was caught like. It was awful. All the sick junkies had come out and were just hanging around the streets sick asking each other if their contact had come on. Then there were rumours of dope in other boroughs and we'd all chip in for the taxi ride across town only to find it was bullshit.

When dope finally came back around it was this fucking real China White and the only time I've ever overdosed (mildly). It may seem surprising that China White came during the drought, but actually it makes sense. People were losing so much cash that there was no time to keep stopping and cutting the stuff. So it was rushed onto the streets and was beautiful. That wasn't the end of the drought though. God, it went on for nearly three months. Every two or three days stuff would come along (real shit this time. But enough to hold you). I was lucky I had cash and bought up as much as I could. I was sick proper twice during that period.

There was a reason for the drought but I won't go in to it just here.

I've been back to London once in 6 years. Me and mum spent our time scoring crack and when the morney run out we had a big bust up and she chucked me out! It was insane. We made up before I left. It's gonna be a sad memory. Not the fight, the scoring, that that was our last time doing that together. She's quit in the meantime and it's kinda the end of an era.

Skanky. Really, what you got there is clean. Cook the shit up that floats around europe and you'll see how lucky you are. I'm scared to think what the shit is I'm putting in my veins. I'm not scared enough not to do it, though! haha


Anonymous said...

Superb piece of writing. Nails exactly how it can be on a day when nothing goes right.

I hate trekking from place, being moved around and treated like a fool by runners half my age and with no idea how to run their business.


Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Johnny,

yeah I always think the same. If one of the dealers had a fucking brain they could clean up.

Some of the little kids I've wanted to slap the shit out of. They come bouncing along chucking bags at you as iff your scum, using their silly bit of power to scream your standing in the wrong way and hotting things up. All that after they've left you standing around in the middle of a residential street for 20 minutes.

I've had some really wonderful dealers also, though. Some that even kinda care. It's normally the little teenage runners who have an attitude.

Take care Johnny and thanks for your words. Shane.

Gledwood said...

Shane, this is just about the best writing on heroin, crack, using and scoring I have read anywhere.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Thanks a lot Gledwood, that means a lot coming from you. Not only because you know first hand that life but because your own words are really great also.

Hopefully one day, all the writers I've come across on the web, we can all contribute to make something together... a book of some kind (short stories, essays) showing what was being missed online as our libraries and bookstores were being piled high with trash.

I think around all the great internet writers I've met, something good is bound to happen soon for someone. When it does, I think we'll all reap the rewards.

Hope you're well Gleds... any news from Melody Lee? I've seen the rumours but cannot get word from her - not even from friends that know her personally.

Gledwood said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gledwood said...

I left a pissed off comment (#39 or so) in response to someone laying into "arselicks" and "fucktards". You call it arselicking, we call it CARING, something to which you might want to contribute some thought, I told "Anonymous" (it's always anonymous innit).

I'm flattered you complimented my own words. You know everyone says you're a great writer, nobody says that about me! Well hardly ever.

In a nutshell, the difference between you and me is: you describe your life vividly, you're an A1 memoirist. Ever read Kate Holden's In My Skin? Your stuff is x10 better than hers.

I can be descriptive, but my main object is to show the bemused non-addict what addiction really is and how it functions.. The hows and whys and wherefores.

As you know when you write a memoir you must choose either a novelistic style with reconstructed dialogue, or a letter/diary style, as if explaining your life to a close friend. My memoir, when I attempted it was in the 2nd style. Going against fashion. Still, I hoped, a good read.

Neither of us are pretentious purveyors of literary wank. I certainly don't think so, and I have no time for self-consciously "literary" works, novels especially. We tell extraordinary tales f

or ordinary people.

We're coming at the same subject from different angles, that's all.

Have I hit the nail on the head? If not, what's wrong?

This rain post of yours really ought to go in a "how to" book. You avoided the obvious pitfall of lengthy setpiece paragraph-long descriptions of downpour. This is not necessary. Every sentence, every paragraph is rain-soaked, steamy and sodden.

You have a true mastery of style. Very, very few writers really do.

If maybe four or five of us could put something together telling it as it actually is without compromising, you never know, we might change something for the better. People need to read stories like yours because they make a murky subject clear.

Please stay in touch re this idea, I'd be well up for it.

Please email me:

If you don't get a reply, comment on my latest post and I'll check carefully in case the eejuts assumed you were spamming.

Peace Love Unity and Respect ;-)

This is version 2, there were a couple of words out of place that made the original seem a bit dur-brained!

Gledwood said...

Got your email cheers. Couldn't reply. Stupid thing mishbehaving badly. Have you noticed my blog has changed from furry animals and chinese calligraphy to drugs drugs drugs. It was originally meant to tell the inside story but I lost my way. Also I wasn't in too hot a mental state.
Your idea was a v good one. I will write more in the email once I get the eejut thing to work.
One thing we have in common is writing on a minority subject for the majority. Melody Lee is an excellent writer, but as I once told her re her strapline "never apologize, never explain" my blog is all about explaining. That's the whole point of it. That makes us as alike as black pepper and strawberry icecream. She loved the strawberry icecream idea.

I see what you mean about the way I write attracting different types of comments. Also you're often writing about the past, while I post last night!

In the beginning people assumed I was asking them to save me. Of course not. 2 people got really upset about this and don't comment any more.

I'll put the rest in an email. I have some ideas about this book.

PS before I forget to say it, if you do find out anything about Melody please get in touch. She blogs on some Junkie Underground type site but it's log-in only and I've lost my log-in. If she was there I'm sure soeone would have said.

I will try emailing properly tomorrow. Bloody technology!

Anonymous said...

Hi Shane!! How's things??!Pretty good over here,'same shit,different day',as they say. Just wanted to drop a line to see how you're holding up! TC! Chrissy x

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Chrissy, hope you had a nice little break. Oh, things are fine here. Actually just waiting for my phone to ring, stop and then I'll walk out in the snow to pay for 5 bottles of methadone. I'll swallow one of them and then do 300 sit ups, 150 star jumps, half an hour step work and maybe 80 or so miles on the exercise bike... gotta keep healthy! haha

Seriously though, last time I done anything near a sit up I was coming around and trying to figure out where the hell I was. I done that twice then decided oblivion was a better place.

Thoughts as ever, Shane. X

Anonymous said...

LOL I hear ya on the staying healthy!!Ive been crazy busy with the holiday and having 2 lil ones in my later years keeps me going 24-7...Frankly,I detest this time of year,too commercialized and overrated!!I hope ur well. Looking forrward to your next installment here!! Cheerio(Thats my English Chrissy xx

Gledwood said...

Shane I know I am meant to get in touch with you. I cannot remember whether or not I did.
Everything's gone tits up. Now I have to see a dr tomorrow. I am dreading it like no drs appointment I can ever recall. This is a nutnut dr.
O I have gotta go. I am telling you this as I recall reading an email or the top of one in a really distracted state (and bear in mind, between that vital click and anything else, the computer could have shut down power on me or anything. If you want to read what happened it's ALL there, last few days, but don't underestimate the sheer chaos of it all. That's what I am coming to explain/apologize for. I do want to get back to you. Feel ill.

OK I'd better go everything I say seems confused or confusing the longer it goes on!!!

Take it easy ;->

Luis Drayton said...

Wow Shane, that post really was the total truth! I remember terrible days during droughts - My wife Pauline phoning dealer after dealer, me pacing up and down, hoping against hope they'd answer the phone and have something, and our flatmate Steph (who was and remains totally straight) sitting in her room with the door closed, terrified to come out for fear (in your words) "there'd be a riot". Talking to us recently about those days, she said she could literally feel "waves of panic sweeping through the flat"...

ioana said...

wow! so, i recently discovered your work, and i have read some of the posts.

i am really fascinated. your style of writing is very captivating. the way you tell a story, it just makes me want to read more and more. i also admire the fact that you're telling us, some strangers, about your life, what you're thinking, just the way it is.

you're really talented. so, keep up with the good work.

huugs, Ioana.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Luis,

Well you're from there, so it must even ring more true to you. We surely have a few dealers in common... and maybe a few debts!

I sent you a mail so evrything else is covered in that. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Bufarinaaa, I've surely spelled your name wrong, but that's OK, I get mine wrong all the time too. Welcome to this place... always great to have some new faces around. Love and Thoughts, Shane. X said...

Make the Yuletyde Gay

nobody special said...

Seasons greetings Shane! You don't know me but, having spent the last few days reading your posts, I certainly feel that I know you. I wanted to thank you for sharing!
You have a real way with words. Utterly compelling.

I was in a similar situation to you - I used for about 10 years when I lived in North London - had many adventures scoring around Kings X - (gawd it used to be like the Wild West there for a while - but then London is a wild town) And met many different people - Some of the nicest & some of the worst - I could really relate to one of your earlier posts describing the process whereby
you become increasingly aware of the amount of people who use (in London anyway) - so in the end you almost assume everyone does - there really is a whole hidden
community & that's one of the things that "using" gave me ...
at a time when I was very lonely it gave me a whole "community" of similar "lost souls" - I don't think one should underestimate that. It was us against the world!
Though at the same time of course, ultimately it was everyman for himself
Like you, I never felt 100% a member of the lost junkie underground - I was lucky! I wouldn't want to go back to that but wouldn't have missed it either

Your writing will become ever more valuable as the years pass - of that I am sure

Hope all is well with you & i wish you all the best for the future

Jon B

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Jon B,

Thank you for all you say, its very kind!

yeah, there'ss really a whole hidden world. i'll never see a man just loitering about on a street the same again. It's like one of these magical puzzles that you stare at and suddenly an image appears... suddenly you can see through all the mess and there are junkies hanging around everywhere you go. I often used to think how astonished residents would be if they knew what was going on in their street.

I have never made any affict friends.. not one. There were a few I spoke to and didn't mind, and there were many who considered me a friend, but from my side I never felt any friendship. We were speaking just for a very specific purpose. i've met affict friends on the internet though. i think it helps that we have no drug scams between us. That always ends in tears. But I did find a community. It was nice mentally to know that was there and tehre was a kind of support in it, but physically I didn't make it up, and still don't.

I think you was lucky not to have descended into that. Most who do, do not escape alive. And if they do, it's usually with a death sentence anyway.

I don't think many would want to go back. Even me, I still use but could do without all of that. Because I write it serves me well, and so I take that positive from it and use it as an ace rather than a low card.

Hopefully in the future the writings here will take on more importance and be left as a tribute to what was happening in these times and how we lived. Not just addicts, because the blog speaks a lot of general life around that. But it is something I keep in mind: Is it historically relevent?Does it need to be written? Am I giving any kind of an insight into my time?

I also love London and want in a way to give my reprensentation of what it was in my lifetime. Not because I think I am a power to do that, but just because it is a passion of mine. The city made and killed me and then made me again... it's just a huge metroplis of inspiration to me.

Ok, take care Jon, and if you want another read about this scene you can buy our friend Tony O'neill's book 'Down & Out on Murder Mile', which I assure you: You'll love.

All My best, Shane. X

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Joe M... Oh, that does make a good Christmas gay !!!

Sorry for the appalling joke... but you asked for it! X

Mr. Orange said...


Reading things like this make me miss the life i led for so long in ways that only a junkie can understand. I've been off it for a little while now, since march, but ive been free since the end of september... at first i felt that the lack of dope in my life was liberating... and often times anymore i feel that it just doesnt fit with my personality... i feel that this isnt the life for me... i recently read your post about "chris" and i related in ways that "normal" people seldom understand... and i feel like chris alot of times...

that being said, i have things to do, responsibilities and such... it would be unfair to the people in my life for me to do the things i once did, so i get a vicarious thrill from your writing... and sometimes i dream about returning to the life that i know... the one that i understand... the one that has the highest of highs, and the lowest of lows... the one that feels like home...

thank you
Mr. Orange

Sid said...

Haha! All so familiar!

So well written too, im envious of your writing style.
Im just beginning my blogging, thanks for the comment


Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Mr Orange,

Thanks for coming reading and taking the time to comment... that means a lot.

I can understand how you can miss that life, but really its much more exciting in retrospect, because in reality the excitement is a nightmare, especially with an egg timer to sickness counting down on you.

I don't advocate sobriety, but neither do I advovate drug use. You must live your life however best suits you and its circumstances. But if you can ejoy life drug free it's better than enjoying it under an addiction. It's the same just without the hassle and all the trappings.

I also think it's quite normal to become 'Chris' after a period of addiction. That life is so hectic that when its over you do the opposite for a while and exchange the mayhem for predictability. I done the same when I quit on coming to France. I bacame tidal in my consistency. But I needed to learn french... I couldn't score without doing thatn so I had huge motivating factors.

Anyway, straight, clean, bent or dirty, I wish you well and only hope whatever road you head down is a happy one.

All My Thoughts, Shane.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hey ya Sid! Great to have you here and thank you for what you say. the writing's just luck... a lucky life and lucky eyes. Not for everyone, but for me it feels like that. Though just to confuse matters: I don't believe in luck.

All My Best, Shane. X

Jon B said...

Hi again Shane,
Thanks for responding.

"Hopefully in the future the writings here will take on more importance and be left as a tribute to what was happening in these times and how we lived."

- This is exactly how I meant it - I think you can rest assured that they will/do. "

"Am I giving any kind of an insight into my time?"

- Absolutely - you, certainly are!
Keep it up mate - you have a rare gift!

Anyway, all the best for the New Year - hope you have a good 'un!

Keep safe,

Jon B

Anonymous said...

Wishing you a Happy New Year Shane!!Been going thru hell here lately,I was on a high dose of methadone(195mg)while pregnant with my babies and am down to 125mg now(My choice,I think I went to fast)First time in 6 yrs and I actually feel like absolute crap in the a.m.It may be psychological,but it certainly feels like detoxing.... (Or I swear the nurse in the clinic is shorting my dose(just a certain one-I am not one prone to that aside,I hope you are well Shane!!Take care!!Hugs!
Chrissy in the USA

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...


Excuse me for the belated reply!!! But happy New Year, although it didn't seem to be full of much joy... well not on the methadone front.

I should imagine if you felt that thefirst day it's psychological. I've found you can half your methadone script for almost two days and you won't feel it as your body feeds of the excess. The third day, just as you think everything is OK, is when you start feeling it. But thats just me and everybosy is different and processes this medication differently.

I'm well thank you....

All my Love Shane. XXX

Wishing you a Happy New Year Shane!!Been going thru hell here lately,I was on a high dose of methadone(195mg)while pregnant with my babies and am down to 125mg now(My choice,I think I went to fast)First time in 6 yrs and I actually feel like absolute crap in the a.m.It may be psychological,but it certainly feels like detoxing.... (Or I swear the nurse in the clinic is shorting my dose(just a certain one-I am not one prone to that aside,I hope you are well Shane!!Take care!!Hugs!
Chrissy in the USA

Señora B said...

Hi Shane, I'm so glad I found your blog. You are a cracking writer. I really look forward to reading more.

Addiction is such a powerful and strange thing - the way you compare it to having a child is just spot on. One of the most important people in my life has had big struggles with weed, but compared to what you have to go through, it seems like nothing.

Another has problems with weed, crack, and coke, and though I've tried my best to be there for her, I know she has some really dark days and I can't always help.

Anyway, just wanted to tell you how glad I am that I stopped by. I'll be back - just like Arnie one said.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Jon B,

Hope you're keeping well... I think you sent me a mail but i know so many fucking John's that I could dress them up and start The Sex Pistols again. But it may have been you and if not, well, I've fucked up again.. nothing serious though.

All My Thoughts Shane.

Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya Corte Inglesa,

Thank you for what you say... it means a lot.

Did I compare addiction to having a child? Don't remember that, but as I've compared it to most things I'll believe ya. I think once I compared it to tramp with three legs... or maybe that was someone else???

I'll be writing more soon... just for you...

thanks for visiting and the time reading and commenting, love and thoughts Shane. XXX

DJ said...

Hiya Shane,

Just recently found your blog and really enjoy reading your writing. It seems you have a talent for it and I hope you can find a way to turn it into an income generator - after reading your posts I can tell you are a genuine good hearted person who deserves to at least be comfortable in whatever lifestyle you choose to live.
I am currently living in a part of China and recently 'discovered' (read: searched for intently) the local drug dealing area. Luckily my wife keeps an eye on our finances so I will only ever be a weekend warrior at best while here, as I have been an addict before (crystal meth) and will not go down that road again if I can help it (and I can).
Best wishes and good luck for the future.


Memoirs of a Heroinhead said...

Hiya DJ...

Thanks for your words they're very kind.

Was it heroin you scored in China? You'll probably need to be bloody careful doing that there... especially for just weekend use. if i was you I'd send my wife to get it! haha..; Yeah, you see... I'm so good hearted!

No, seriously... for what it's worth I'm not sure it's worth it... I know it's not. But people say the same to me... and my words have probably already turned into blah blah blah sheep...

Take care.. be careful... and hope to see you around here again.

Shane. X

Chunks of Reality said...

You are an INCREDIBLE writer and have a blazingly beautiful soul. You are highly talented and I feel blessed to have found your blog.

You're amazing and I can't wait to visit again.

Thank you for taking the time to write such evocative chunks of your reality.

Tatiana said...

Veils lift and you see life and yourself , how you were before they got to you and turned you into plastic shells of human beings. In your writing i feel what it was to be free in the soul and i yearn for it. And i know that i gotta go back there.

Will you take me there ? Last dance of the night....


Shane Levene said...

Free in the soul. For a good moment of my life I had lost all concern of death. Freedom of the soul is nothing more than that - being released from the all occupying constraints of self-preservation and survival. It's a state of mind, My Darling. I can lead you towards beautiful hells and maybe together we'll stand a chance? Alone I've no chance...alone there's no last dance to be had. XxX