This story which is about the day when I'd been closest to so-called 'drug' in my life was happened in Yemen, the country placed in the south end of the Arabian Peninsula.
After a dinner at a typical Arabic restaurant with my colleagues, an Yemeni, a Sudani and a Japanese, all of them were from a trading company, we moved to a perhaps-typical-Yemani-style cafe facing a little broad square in the old area of the capital city, Sana'a ; I remember it was around 10 o'clock. No traveller. I was amazed by the scenary and customes and they, Yemenies, were amazed by me ; "where do you come from?"
"This is nice tea, isn't it?", I said having a cup of herb tea of a very light green colour.
The Yemeni, let say Mr.K, told me the name of the herb which I can't remember unfortunately, then the Japanese guy, Mr.N, said,
"Doesn't it taste like our green tea?"
"Oh! ,,,,,yes,,,,yes! ,,,,no?, o,,,, you make me feel so."
I've never tried Japanese restaurants in abroad. Food they serves us is expensive and awful, as you know. Better to enjoy the food and drink of the country where you are ; that's one of my small philosophy though I would often want to have green tea.
"How about having Gat?" The Yemeni's proposal.
"What? Gat? G, A, T?"
"Yes, yes, G, A, T, GAT."
"It is a leaf containing cocaine or something." Mr.N informed me.
"Daytime I saw some old men made a circle and chewed green leaves. Is that Gat?"
"Yes, yes, that is. Great pleasure! Not only old men, young men also."
"Great! and thank you so much, but smoking and drinking are enough for my bad habit."
Mr.K turned to the Sudani, Mr.F. "How about you?"
"Of course not." Mr.F said with an embarrassed smile, "I never want my head chopping off."
His station was Saudi Arabia. And there, the result of having drug is what he said.
I said, "I never want to have any more addiction. It leads me to get broken."
"No! it is not addictive. Beleve me!"
"Yeeeeeeeeeeees" A triadic denial.
Tut-tutting to us, "It's not addictive. People just enjoy because,,,,,"
"It's so happy!"
A-dominant-seventh-chord laugh. Ha, ha!
"That IS addiction."
"No, no, no, no."
"So, tell me the benefit you get from it."
"o,,,,ah,,,,,yes, we get friends with! yes!"
"In the heavenly dream."
"No, no, real friend. One of my friend is in XXXXXXX. He and his colleagues like it very much. And, and, they keep importing those leaves,,,,"
"It just sounds that they are heavily addicted."
"You lose, Mr.K."
About another one hour we kept chatting. But, I remember nothing. I lost the linen jacket I wore at the night somewhere in India years later.