Using Periscope with the Ipad on stage with the Rupelsoldaten (I'm in the red). Picture: Derrick Bergman / Gonzo media
Using Periscope with the Ipad on stage with the Rupelsoldaten (I’m in the red).
Picture: Derrick Bergman / Gonzo media

On Cannabis Liberation Day itself,  I was too busy with too many things at once to even write a proper review.

But because of an All Areas wristband (and even access to the stage), I was free to go where I wanted, except that I fulfilled the important tasks of market supervisor (the person between the organization and the companies for the hemp market), (social) media supervisor and the general problem solver.

So it was pretty difficult to have a long talk with all you nice people who came over last Sunday to the Flevopark, but I hope you understand.

Just to show what it was for a kind of week, I actually do not need more than sum up my sleeping spots from those days: Gym, VOC office, two nights in the blue backstage bus and finally Sunday night on the canal in Oud-Zuid. What happened in between, I will leave partially to the imagination, or for the day we can talk about it for longer in real life.

The Cannabis Liberation Day poster shining on a wall of graffiti in Amsterdam. Picture: Derrick Bergman / Gonzo media
The Cannabis Liberation Day poster shining on a wall of graffiti in Amsterdam.
Picture: Derrick Bergman / Gonzo media

I could make a simple list with 10 highlights, were it not that I would limit myself to “only” 10 highlights. Therefore, only a personal highlight which would otherwise fall into oblivion.

After breaking up the festival on Monday, one of our heroes of the volunteer team came to me with nothing more than a smile and an outstretched hand. “Hey Mauro! I do not know exactly what you’re doing or where you are in the hierarchy. But you’re doing fantastic!” My response, incidentally, did not differ very much from his because I felt the same.

Because we have all together put something wonderful down, namely for a layman incomprehensible situation in which you put a wonderful free festival together with a team of 60 dope-smoking volunteers. And it works!

[quote_right]Cannabis Liberation Day as a whole, to me felt like a big long psychedelic trip from which I’m now enjoying the comedown[/quote_right]

To return to the title: Cannabis Liberation Day as a whole, to me felt like a big long psychedelic trip from which I’m now enjoying the comedown.

Since October, we have been in fact engaged in preparations, ranging from interesting promotion trips to Barcelona, ​​the 25-year Anniversary celebrations of Coffeeshop Cremers in the Big Church in The Hague and the beautiful outdoor party from Coffeeshop Toermalijn in Tilburg, on which I’d love to talk you up about sometime.

But also: hard work at the VOC office, from folding of the advance posters to trips along several cities to drop off promotional material at cooperating coffeeshops.

Folding the advance posters Picture: Derrick Bergman / Gonzo media
Folding the advance posters
Picture: Derrick Bergman / Gonzo media

These months of stress, hard work and regular highlights, you can see as a build up to a peak in the trip: Cannabis Liberation Day itself. The following days, the glorious comedown during which the stress of falls of your shoulders and you enter a peace and ‘zen’ state of mind, we reminisce while good ideas enter the mind.

Before I moved into the Dutch cannabis culture scene, I felt that cannabis culture was absent here after only really seeing a few local coffeeshop, compared to the imagery from the United States.

I was wrong.

Perhaps the best part of Cannabis Liberation Day is that the single day that we celebrate it, there are so many great memories created, which thanks to the many images taken of the day, the joyful memory remains and is rekindled by sharing it. Mission accomplished if you ask me.

See you next year!

This entry is loosely translated from my Dutch column at Rollingstoned.nl.