I have always been attracted by far away lands, ancient history, adventures, exploration, and unusual but extraordinary role models.
The French adventurer, smuggler, and gunrunner Henry De Monfried, the famous English explorer and linguist Sir Richard Francis Burton and the archaeologist, military officer, and diplomat T.E. Lawrence, better known as Lawrence of Arabia, were my biggest childhood heroes, and certainly the source of my life long hunger for travel and love of diversity.
Traveling to distant places in the late 1970s and throughout the 1980s, visiting historical ruins and museums, learning traditions and sharing the local life, always seeking new experiences, feeding on the newness each culture presented was all I had dreamt about as a child and then some. My travels brought me to different producing countries where I did most of my studies on Cannabis resin with local Hashishins who had been practicing their art for generations.
I realize today how much trust and respect was given to the clueless but eager youth I was. I shared the life of local farmers from North Africa to the feet of the Himalayas in India and Nepal with only my passion for Cannabis resin to open doors. The knowledge and experience of resin processing learned in those countries has helped me develop a deep appreciation for the plant, for traditional techniques and more importantly an understanding of the inherent value of specific regions to the uniqueness and quality of certain Cannabis resins.
A long time later, after a series of extended adventures in Japan and Thailand as a designer I finally settled down in California, a coincidence that was to redefine my life.
I had never been truly conscious of the medicinal potential of the Cannabis plant until meeting patients in California, however I have always been aware of the mental well being and general health of Cannabis farmers and consumers in producing countries. This full awareness brought a new dimension to my dedication to this plant and with the legalization of medical cannabis I was able to share my passion for the traditional techniques I learned in producing countries where its benefits have been understood and used to heal and inspired for tens of thousands of years.
My focus today and for the near future, is on discovering the science behind traditional and modern techniques in an effort to pass on factual knowledge and information to the next generation of Hashishin.
I am Aficionado’s official Hashishin. Aficionado is possibly the first seed company positioning its marketing strategy and the quality control of its breeding program on resin. This working relationship mirrors the relationship between a winemaker and a vigneron, the person who grows the grapes for winemaking - their common goal conveying not only the full essence of the plant but of the land it was grown in as well.
My commitment is to the promotion and protection of the Breeders and Growers of California's Emerald Triangle, and to the legacy of this region which spans multiple generations and is priceless in its uniqueness and its economic potential.