One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

Indica? Sativa? Strains? Yeah, I don’t know about any of that.

Growing up, my family always had a pretty Nancy Reagan stance on drugs. So I didn’t have my first experience with pot until I was 20, and in another country. And I was mostly petrified, thinking of my teen angst idol, Claire Danes, being imprisoned in Thailand for foolishly messing with drugs in 1999’s “Brokedown Palace.”

I’ve had a few other socially-influenced experiences since then, but all left me nervous and convinced I was paralyzed, which was certainly not my idea of fun. Needless to say, I was far from an expert.

Last minute preparations

But when I got the offer to attend the Ganja Goddess Getaway, I was nonetheless intrigued. It touted an “overnight retreat for women focusing on the ways to use cannabis as a creative and spiritual tool.” The website says that the GGG aims to “promote the love, friendship and connections that women have – with themselves, each other and the world around them.” Its mission? “To help connect women to each other and to the plant.”

Okay. Sign me up. Of course, one thing I was worried about was the lack of a “green card,” since there would be smoking at the event + a gift bag with $200 worth of ganja goodies.

Luckily, you can do anything with the help of the internet these days. Just days before the event I literally Googled, “how to get a marijuana card without leaving my house,” and within 10 minutes I had spoken to a doctor and gotten approval. Nothing left to do now but … go? And be a Ganja Goddess.

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

Me, just a few hours earlier.

I was coming from a friend’s birthday party at Disneyland the morning of the Ganja Goddess Getaway, so I was dressed like a Neverland mermaid, with a green, flowy halter dress and seashell and pearl crown. Turns out a Neverland mermaid also looks a lot like a Ganja Goddess. I won over many a goddess with my ensemble, which I’ll come back to later.

They say adding even two women to a corporate environment can make all the difference. It changes the vibe, you know? Well, the same can be said for when you take away all of the men. The vibe of the GGG was immediately different, like stepping into a portal of warmth, self confidence, camaraderie and acceptance.

Quite an entrance

And the spirit of femininity was celebrated from the very second I arrived. One of the women welcoming guests told me that all of the horses on the gorgeous plot of land we would be camping on were not only female, but pregnant. All, that is, except one, the grandmother.

After parking and grabbing all of my gear, I was greeted by another group in GGG T-shirts and beaded, green weed leaf necklaces. They cheerfully welcomed everyone at the registration tent, offering all newcomers their own joint. That’s right, this getaway was not going to be short on the ganja.

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

Overlooking the gorgeous landscape of the retreat.

Next, we gathered inside (one of the only areas where there was “no smoking allowed” to watch the introduction, a lovely, heartwarming speech by GGG CEO, Deidra Bagdasarian.

After that I began to wander around, seeing as I had signed up for one of this year’s “add on” items, a henna tattoo. The henna booth wasn’t quite ready yet though, so I quickly scampered away so as not to stress them out by lingering around as they tried to finishing setting up.

In the meantime, I checked out another booth, artfully decorated with veritable cookie jars of, you guessed it, marijuana. They had pipes, pens and tons of joints. I admitted to the personable woman tending the booth that I really didn’t know what I was doing, and therefore, did not have a favorite strain. Thankfully, she lent me a hand, offering a pre-rolled harlequin joint, which is apparently high in CBD, and good for people – like me – who suffer from anxiety.

While there, I made friends with a lovely woman from Acme Elixirs, who generously shared some CBD chews as well as conversation about the beauty of being surrounded by women entrepreneurs.

Getting in on the action

After grabbing lunch, a delicious falafel bowl, which was included, I headed back to my friends at the henna booth. I decided to just go for it – why not? – and let one of the artists decorate my entire hand. And boy, am I glad I did. I’m believing more and more in this intuition thing as I go on, because with no suggestion from me, she created a stunning floral creation. And anyone who knows me knows how much I love flowers. That cannot be understated.

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

While there, one woman whipped out a bubbler, while another pulled out a vape pen. I just hung out and finished off my lunch as I chatted with the two artists as well as two other women who would quickly become my GGG buddies.

Next we got to make fresh flower crowns, which was a bit hectic because it was obviously a popular activity, but nonetheless fun. And, bonus, now I know how to make a fresh flower crown! There was also a 420 giveaway (which I did not win), and lots and lots of food.

We frequently revisited the spread because it was honestly unbelievable. One table offered water, multiple kinds of iced tea, lemonade and iced coffee. Another held coffee and hot tea with all the fixings — including CBD and THC sugar cubes — and all the food you could ever want.

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

My handmade flower crown.

There were bowls of chips – veggie, kettle cooked, ruffled and regular variety – pretzels, fruit, rolls, bagels with lox and cream cheese, muffins, cereal, peanut M&Ms and cheese – oh, the cheese. There were slices of cheese with crackers. And cheese pastries. There was a platter with soft, goat cheese, raspberries and crostinis. I cannot praise this spread enough. Every time I returned to the counter, there were new platters. These women were angels.

While sitting down, munching on some cheese and crackers, one of the lovely Ganja Goddesses came by and offered us yet another joint. So I was feeling pretty damn good by the time I split up with my newfound friends to head to my reiki appointment — yet another thing I had never experienced before.

But it was very relaxing. The soft toll of the bells. The soothing music. The warmth of the reiki healer’s hands. Afterwards, she explained what had come from our session. Apparently, I gave off an “angelic” vibe. I have a “child’s heart, so pure, naive, a young kindred spirit,” – the kind that “fairies and angels are drawn to.”

She could see that I am emotional (Check!) and that I carry all of that in my heart. She saw pink and green in my aura. That being said, she told me that green veggies would be my best friend in times of struggle, to balance me out and comfort me. Kind of contrary to my typical cravings of chocolate and salty snacks like French Fries, but it makes sense.

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

The food spread was nothing short of heavenly.

Then I met back up with one of my friends for the 6:30 p.m. “Edibles for Goddesses” panel — but not before helping myself to a tiny, mint chocolate edible cupcake. I have to say, I was a little worried about how I would react to all of this weed, seeing as my only experiences prior had been pretty negative.

But, there I was, hours away from home, outside, surrounded completely by strangers… feeling sincerely and totally at ease. It’s like my anxiety, typically pestering me to believe everyone is judging me or annoyed by me, etc., decided to just take a day off — chill by the luxurious pool or imbibe in its own harlequin joint.

The panel was illuminating, with Deliciously Dee actually showing us how to make our own medicinal edibles. The “goddess” aspect wasn’t lost on her though, as she explained, “Everything you consume is the female part of the plant. It’s the flower.” She mused that, similar to the way the healing properties are pulled from the flower alone, women are best when they are alone, working on themselves.

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

Deliciously Dee pouring her concoction into molds.

When such a poet offers you the result of her hard work, you can’t really say no, now can you? So then I had a mango, 5mg gummy on top of everything else from the day. I was feeling pretty good — pretty, pretty, pretty good.

Half baked

And then a short while later, I was feeling pretty… out of it. Not quite to the extent that I had in prior negative experiences, but I was riding the struggle bus pretty hard through dinner. Enough that I made my way back to my room to try and pull myself together.

I changed into more comfortable clothes, and then forced myself to rejoin the crowd for the fireside, with the Tibetan singing bowl sound bath and show and share tribe talent time. I couldn’t really make out what was happening though, because I was having a really hard time focusing on anyone enough to make out what they were saying. So after ensuring I got myself over to the fire to make a s’more, I decided to call it a night. It was like, maybe 10 p.m. That’s the earliest I’ve gone to bed in quite a while.

And I went right to bed. No tossing and turning, or sitting up wondering if I’d said something stupid or somehow embarrassed myself. Just sound, restful sleep.

The morning after

The next day I made sure I was up to join in on the morning meditation. It’s nice to allow yourself to relax, and taking in the beautiful scenery from the rooftop certainly didn’t hurt, either. Fruit, bagels and lox and Earl Grey tea (with CBD sugar) made for a beautiful start to the day.

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

Starting the day with rooftop morning meditation.

I watched Rachel True speak about the meaning of tarot, which was pretty damn cool – especially since I’m kind of obsessed with “The Craft” – before heading back downstairs to get ready for “The Goddess and Cannasexuality” panel. Lucky me, as I waited, Vanessa Corrales of B Edibles fired up the cotton candy machine again. Now I’ll have tried all three of the magical (medicated) flavors there – rose petal, lavender and grapefruit.

I was also handed another joint as I sat outside of the house, finishing up my cotton candy and waiting for the panel to begin. The panel, put on by Ashley Manta of Cannasexuality, was hilarious. Describing the common confusion that the vagina is the vulva, Ashley explained – using “The Lion King” for reference – “Everything the light touches is your vulva.”

But it was also empowering. Remember, this event isn’t just about weed. It’s about being a goddess. And that means not being afraid to ask for what you want. Ashley even handed out goddess cards as we entered for the panel. And at this point, I’m not surprised that mine was so resonant. I got the “Aeracura,” which said, “You are just getting started, so have patience with yourself and the process, and do not give up.”

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

Maybe that’s a sign? A not-so-subtle nudge from the universe? I mean, I already said I’ve been getting more into spirituality, what with my interest in crystals, essential oils and intuitive tattoos. Perhaps I had been buying too much into the stigma of weed. It clearly can be medicinal.

To end the surprisingly joyous weekend was the closing and awards ceremony. And to my shock, I myself came away with an award, for arriving already dressed as a goddess. The honor, which came with such sweet words that myself and fellow honorees were struck with tears, also boasted a VIP pass to another Ganja Goddess Getaway event. So I guess I’ll be returning?

All in all, I’d say the Ganja Goddess Getaway was eye-opening. For someone not experienced in the world of weed, it’s a fun way to learn. Everyone is so warm and welcoming – it’s truly a safe space. Plus, the women here really blast that negative stereotype of lazy stoners. These are empowered women who own their own businesses and are working hard to continually advance not only themselves, but their fellow goddesses.

One ENTITY writer recounts the experience at Ganja Goddess Getaway as a weed rookie.

Ashley Manta of Cannasexuality speaking during her panel.

And I shouldn’t have to say this, but if you already were a fan of the powerful plant, well, you’ll have a damn ball. There’s so much available, and in so many different forms. It’s a veritable cannabis carnival.

Finally, the best thing about the Ganja Goddess Getaway — it’s just plain fun. We know how much we stress these days, with work and our personal lives. One thing Americans know how to do, is stress ourselves out. And stress can take a serious toll. I mean, I should know. My body literally stopped knowing how to produce cortisol.

AKA – we need to chill out. And the Ganja Goddess Getaway allowed me to do exactly that. And let me tell you, I needed it. I cannot thank these women enough for letting me open up, for letting me be myself, for letting me safely take a risk, and experiment and relax. I won’t soon forget it.

The outfit that won me a VIP pass.
Rachel True teaching us about tarot.
Medicated cotton candy.
B Edibles.
Making friends at Ganja Goddess Getaway.
Goodies from the Ganja Goddess Getaway gift bag.

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