In Nick’s apartment I met some old friends and many new.
“You know Høne? She is in India,” I was asked many times. I was not sure, but when she came back I did know her. She was not one to forget, and she was to become a lifelong close friend. So was Lena, Nick’s girlfriend, though we were not that close in the beginning, when there could be a question of who was ‘mistress’ of the apartment. Later we went through a hard time together, and that purified our feelings for each other. We were jailed. Nick was selling hash as part of his promotion of the hippie lifestyle, and using the profits to keep the daily guests in smoke. At one point I also had a small business going, getting one 200 g pack of Lebanese at a time from a friend. One day Nick said to cool it for a while. A guy he didn’t know, and whose vibes he didn’t like, had asked to buy kilos, and when Nick said he didn’t deal in kilos the guy wouldn’t take no for an answer and was begging Nick to help him out. Nick thought he might be a stool pigeon, so I stopped my transactions.
Some time later, a quiet evening when only Lena and I were home, the doorbell rang, and through the spy hole I saw a smiling young woman. I opened and two plainclothes cops who had been hiding on the sides stuck their feet in the door. The fortress was taken! They wanted to search my room and ordered me to give them what I had of hash. I had two pieces, a tiny dry piece of Turkish and a nice nugget of the best Lebanese. I gave them the Turkish, but the Lebanese I hid in my hand and asked permission to put my dilrupa, an Indian string instrument that Torben Huss had given me, in its case, and after they had examined the case I placed the dilrupa together with the nugget in the case, where it was later found by Kailas and enjoyed by everybody. I told them that only my table and my box belonged to me, and when they had searched this they took me off to jail. Later they thought that my whole room had been searched, so they never looked on the shelves, where the first thing that hit my eye, when I returned, was an incriminating cigar box containing hash dust and a cloth cover from a block of Lebanese.
That night in jail I had a vivid dream. I sat in a big room in a museum, but the window was like the skylight in the living room on Jagtvejen. On a bench in front of me sat Lena and Nick; somebody said something, and Lena answered with emphasis: “One can only live by love.”
“Yes,” I said right away, “that is true!” and Lena turned around and we kissed lightly as to confirm our common knowledge.
Lena, who was only nineteen, was scared that night in jail, but suddenly she clearly heard me playing my Indian string instrument and she calmed down and fell asleep. They let her go next morning, but Nick and I were taken before a judge. Waiting to enter we were left alone in a room, each locked in his own little compartment. We knew the other one was there, and we had time to agree on not admitting to anything. In the newspapers it had been splashed as ‘the big coup’ by the cops, but they didn’t find anything in the apartment, except a solid block of clay that for one exiting moment made them think that they had succeeded. In the end they had to let me go after two weeks, and Nick, in order to protect his connection, ended up inventing a deal with an unknown person. He was given three weeks that were done at the time of his trial.
Nick was in many ways an unlikely person to take a leading role in the hippie community. He was rather shy and introverted and quite disdainful of anything that was contrary to his taste. In a way his fanaticism was his strength: he held on to his ideas with such tenacity that others adopted them. For instance he started using the word ‘Galar’ for hashish, and after a while that was the word that everybody used. It came from a sort of potato chillum from Trinidad called Galar-Galar that a friend of his had told him about.
Jail had been far more intolerable to him than to me, and he blamed me for having let in the cops. There was not the same harmony in the house as before, and I began to look for a change. Was it time to go to India?