Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2010

Bhang Lassi

Bhang, as many backpackers slouching through South Asia would know, is a degraded form of cannabis, commonly known as hash. In parts of India, balls of bhang can be purchased at government dispensaries — after all, the drug has a long history of use in the country, tied to certain ecstactic rituals of both Muslims and Hindus in the subcontinent. During Holi, a Hindu spring festival of color, bhang has long been traditionally mixed into a delicious concoction of milk, sugar, spices and almonds and imbibed by all. (This is no big deal when most of the day involves meandering around city streets, ambushing others with with colored powders and paints.) Now, bhang lassis, especially when procured around some grimy hostel, present more of a dilemma: Are the hours of intoxication worth the potential days stretched out grimacing in bed?