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A Rocky Start: My First Day at the High Times Cannabis Cup

November 25, 2013

Almost as soon as I boarded the airplane for the first leg of my flight from Seattle to Chicago, I realized that my Amsterdam trip was going to be off to a bad start. After getting kicked out of a first class bathroom, developing a bad head cold, being accosted by a much older married man, and two seemingly endless flights with little sleep, I arrived at my final destination only to become devastatingly lost on my first trip from Mijdrecht (the small town I am staying in) to Amsterdam.

Oh, you know. Just some cannabis growing inside the Paradise Seed Shop.

I was quickly becoming discouraged with my entire trip. Just as I was about to give up on the day and head back to Mijdrecht for a nap, my bad luck was completely turned around by my first Cannabis Cup interview. Today I got to meet Luc Krol, owner of Paradise Seeds and organizer of the Medical Cannabis Bike Tour. Let me tell you, Luc is one cool and accomplished man.

Paradise Seeds, the creaters of Sensi Star and the original White Widow cannabis strain, technically began about 20 years ago and was one of the first 10 seed companies in Amsterdam (now the small city features over 200). While founding Paradise Seeds is an accomplishment in and of itself, Luc, along with one of his friends, may have another reason to boast. Two years ago, he began a truly one-of-a-kind international medical cannabis support initiative: the Medical Cannabis Bike Tour.

Luc with his Bike Tour medal (and rocking a Leafly beanie!).

In order to raise funds for the University of Madrid’s research on cannabis and cancer, Luc organized a team of cyclists to ride 400 kilometers through the Spanish countryside. Between donations from tour sponsors and the cyclists themselves, he and his team managed to raise 50,000 Euro last year. They hope to double that number during the 2014 tour, making it possible for the University of Madrid to continue with cancer research.

Meeting Luc and the Paradise team was very much the highlight of my day. Even after a miserable morning filled with confusion and jetlag, it’s difficult to ignore the passion about high quality medical cannabis found in the Paradise shop. The full Luc interview will be posted shortly after my return stateside.

Leafly outside of the Royal Palace.

Tune in tomorrow for a recap of my visit to Green House Seeds, where I’ll meet with Strain Hunter’s Franco to discuss their Cup expectations and what makes their award-winning products truly stand out from the crowd.

Until next time,