The problem with shooting heroin is the heaving. Eventually, you reach a point where you have nothing to throw up and it doesn’t matter anymore. But, until then, you shoot it, you want to heave.
So there I was with Chris, crashing at his parents in Enghein, some ritzy suburbs of Paris. We had been shooting up heroin and drinking beers downtown and getting fucked up and suddenly catching the last train back to bumfuck paradise where they raise horses and polite Christian girls and where Chris’ parents lived. I had never been there and I had no idea when was the last time Chris had been there.
Once in Enghein, it was late and dark and there was no one anywhere. After leaving the train station, we had to walk a very long way. I remember walking through hicks’ town, wide avenues, century old trees, a smell of horseshit, and not even local police fucking with us. I remember imagining I was Louis the 14th.
Then, right off the prairie, a big house that screamed of comfort and ease.
I was glad to arrive because it took indeed some walking to get there and I was in no state of mind for a marathon. I envy, some, these long distance running guys and girls able, at a split second, to take off on their own for 10, 30 or 50 kilometers. If apocalypse ever comes, I’ll tie myself to one of their tails.
All that to say I’m no runner for sure – what, with my boots? Fact is, I could have crashed anywhere in downtown Paris, if only because, in Paris, everyone ends up sleeping somewhere eventually.
But no! I was the one who brought the idea to crash at Chris’ folks in Enghein, where fresh air smells of horseshit. Chris laughed and said “Why not.” So I said “Why not?” and we laughed and hurried to catch the last train to bumfuck blue grass.
What Chris didn’t know is that, thinking of it, I kind of liked his sister. That’s really why I was so willing to go to horseshit country, so much so that I suggested it. I was thinking that I may get lucky.
Chris and I met carrying heroin. We befriended and I got to meet his sister a few times and there we were.
Somehow, she heard us coming in and came to join us in the basement. Alright then, I warmed up a nice fix for all three of us and Chris put some music on. The good thing about heroin is that you don’t need many words, so often music is enough. And music itself doesn’t have to show off. And if there’s no music at all, so be it. And, come to think of it, for Christ’s sake, shutting up is one of heroin’s beauty. So everything was ok.
There was Chris’ sister, her name I don’t remember. But I remember she knew why I was there and why she was there and understood what was happening. She seemed happy that I came from all that way just to see her and I was happy myself that I had the idea of coming.
Anyway, heroin is no speed so we kind of settled.
Do you know the difference between the US of A and France, as far as dope is concerned? In the US, dingheads like speed, pot and cocaine. In old Europe, mellower paradises are favored. Less violence, time on our side, we smoke hashish and shoot heroine. Cocaine, at best, is for show offs and guys and girls working in advertising or TV or for any other American pimp.
Anyway, the heaving. The only problem with heroin is the heaving.
There are all kinds of heaving. Everybody knows the party heave. Too much drinking, too much drugs you don’t know about and are not used too – New Year’s heave! Most women who are mothers know the early pregnancy heave – Alien’s heave. Most men after fifty are in despair and drink the night away in the ever hope to get lucky. In the morning, first thing, they want to heave and, brushing their teeth, they do sometimes. There’s also the heaving of a man tortured by a mean police. Here we’re talking about heaving one’s guts out. Then there’s the heaving of the torturer.
Well, all that to say heaving is really no surprise, especially when you’re shooting heroin and feeling pretty good about yourself, especially since Chris’ sister was there looking lovely and wanting.
So I figured I’d get the heaving over with and then I could really concentrate.
Before I got moving, I wondered all of a sudden what it was with me that I kept falling in love with my friends’ sisters. This instance in Enghein, I knew, was not really the first time I was getting out of my way to go meet a sister.
Anyway, now, I know where all this started from. I was in high school and I was, with my brother and sister, among the poor fucks having to walk our way there, and back. In France, when you’re poor, you walk. I had to go to the US to discover that you could be poor AND own a car, and a TV and a microwave oven. In the US, those are the richest poor people I’ve ever seen.
Anyway, every day on my way back from school, this girl, sitting straight up on her bicycle, her little ass sticking out of the saddle, would pass by me, pedaling on the road, on her own way back from school.
She paid no attention to me, she was a bit older but, after she went, I remember smelling her perfume and how much I loved it and what it did to me. Christ almighty!
I quickly learned she was the older sister of a guy my age but not in my class. Her name was Catherine, his name was Nicolas. He and another guy, a Jean-Michel maybe, were best friends and were pretty much keeping to themselves.
Me? I didn’t care so I befriended these two guys. That meant, on some afternoons and week-ends, alternatively go to any of their places and play games with them and be nice to mom & pop. Every now and then, there was a chance, at Nicolas’, to see Catherine and breeze a whiff of her scent and feel my brain going beserk.
I never took them to where I lived and they never asked to come.
Catherine eventually understood why I was there and why I had become a master at her brother’s games. Yet, she never let me know any of it. Me, I was happy with her body odor, a fool with good intentions.
Anyway, riding her bicycle like she would a horse, Catherine would pass by me, on that road, every day, wiggling her ass. She never showed anything toward me. I didn’t care, I was loaded with perfume and, back then, I would have run that marathon.
Every day, as I was walking, I waited for her. I would never turn round but I would always know when she was approaching.
One day, it was spring, she suddenly stopped by me and offered me a ride. I was flabbergasted, knew nothing about what to say. So I looked stupid, said something stupid, got a hold of her books and sat behind her on the bike’s carrier and asked no question.
She got up on the pedals to get the bike going. She was wearing a pastel blue blouse, a flowery skirt and I hanged onto the saddle. Eventually, the bike was moving along and Catherine sat on the saddle, on my thumbs. It’s hard to describe. The overwhelming perfume, this sweetest ass going about my thumbs, the dignified way of getting me home… It was incredible.
She left me in front of my door, with no apparent qualms. Then she left.
As life has it, from there, she and her brother moved and disappeared from my life.
Back in the basement in Enghein, I was wondering what Catherine would have thought of me and of my present need to heave, while lurking at yet another good smelling sister of a friend of mine? And, come to think of it, I can now remember another Catherine, and more even.
What a fuck is wrong with me? What the hell?
Oh yes, the heaving. That’s why I was thinking about all of this in the first place. But I had now to get moving because I could feel the heaving getting ready.
I could tell Chris was doing OK and his sister too. I was not even sure whether there was music or not but I liked the beat. So I thought to myself about maybe getting lucky with a sister, for once, and I was thinking also how lucky I was, for once, having to heave with no stress whatsoever.
I was very aware it was late – I could somehow smell the horseshit from outside – and the house was dark when I got up there from the basement. I tiptoed my way and found the right door to the toilets and, when I flipped the switch, light was welcome.
Then I saw it all. It was perfect, I felt so good.
I saw the round watery eye of the toilet bowl itself and I knew this was my aim and my goal. So I took my time, squared real sharp with my back and heels against the door, took a good look at the scenery, felt good with myself, took a big breath, aimed to the round eye and let the heave go.
It came from deep down within, with a power of its own. I aimed and I heaved, somewhat like a lion roars; that’s the image that came to my mind. As far as I was concerned, this was spirit.
This was a mother heave and it came out blasting.
I painted the whole room.
Thinking of it, I’m sure now there was music.
Anyway, I was feeling by then much better and relieved. The heaving being over, that’s when heroin gets to be really fun. And, as it was, I had much to think about getting lucky.
So I went back down in the basement and fixed everyone for good measure. Good Christian girls being what they are, or is it me? or is it heroin? or is it whatafuck? Anyway I didn’t even get near paradise, save for perfume. I would remember it otherwise.
I did hear some commotion the next morning. Must have been morning. But that was commotion.
I didn’t know what it was all about but I remember all of a sudden Chris and I having to get out of there and having to walk all the way back to the train station. Shit, couldn’t his parents afford a taxi? I guess not. I was abundantly sweating as we went through wide avenues, century old trees, the smell of horseshit, and not even local police fucking with me. Sweating like a pig was a decent sign of being alive I thought.
On the platform, Chris and I waited for the next train that was going to take us back to Paris where I hoped to make it through the day. A quick check told me how much heroin Chris and I had left. Plenty!
I felt lucky and there was nothing sexual about it. Heroin will do that to you, it’s just a matter of getting used to it.
In the train, on our merry way, we would have fixed ourselves a good shoot save for the drab faces of early risers going to work. We didn’t want to hurt anyone. Who knows, I may have happily painted the train’s car.
So we gave these people a rain check and counted the stations.