I found a suspicious looking plastic bag, filled with a finely-ground herbal substance, on the worktop in the kitchen just now.
“Here,” I called out to Mrs Mike. “What’s this?”
“Smell it,” was the answer.
So I did. Interesting aroma; kind of sweet. Nice. Mellowing. I recognised it.
But I said: “What d’you think would happen if the police came knocking and found this?”
This is not as far from the possible as it may seem. We used to have a bush growing by the front door that smelt suspiciously like a certain Grade B narcotic substance, that caused many a raised eyebrow among visitors until we eventually dug it up.
So picture the scene if you can: In come the coppers – Sergeant and Constable.
Sergeant: ‘Allo, ‘allo, ‘allo, wot’s all this then?
Constable: It’s a dodgy-lookin’ baggie, is wot it is, sir!
Sergeant: Well spotted, Constable! Now then, you: Wot’s in it?
Mrs Mike: Lavendar!
Sergeant: Oi’ve never ‘eard it called that before. Right, Constable! Take it to the lab for examination! And don’t you open that bag before I get there!
Next thing, they’d be after evidence from local contacts. As this bag was intended for a friend down the road, she’d be the first to be interviewed:
Friend: Yeah, I remember ‘ow it ‘appened. She turned up on my doorstep with the bag in her hand. ‘Smell this,’ she said. So I did. It smelt goooOOOOoood. So I said I’d ‘ave some. Next day she turned up with some more and before you knew it I had a floral monkey on my back!
We could even end up seeing reports about it on the TV news.
Newscaster: A new strain of narcotic drug is sweeping across Mid Wales, according to police. ‘Lavendar’ is the street name for the substance – a name derived from its sweet smell, which is believed to be the reason the drug is snorted, rather than smoked. It is believed to induce feelings of mellowness, serenity, and an urge to make potpourri.
This is Mike Sivier, your correspondent in the war on drugs, signing off – for now.