When I turned 18 years old, I bought some cigarettes and smoked for 2 weeks straight. I used to sit on my balcony and puff away. I was feeling rebellious and betrayed. I quit after getting a canker sore on the inside of my mouth. Ever since then, I’ve smoked two or three a year, mostly  in my early twenties with Ash by the park near our house.

12 years later, while in the jungle in Peru with my then-novio, I started smoking again, with perhaps too much free time on my hands. And to be honest, feeling once again a bit rebellious and now I must admit it’s rebellion mixed with betrayal and heartache. Mopachos are pure Amazonian tobacco so I suppose I feel a little less guilty, knowing they’re not as toxic as regular cigarettes. Smoking makes me take deep breaths in and long breaths out. I blow the smoke out and with it goes my stress, my tension, my negativity. I look forward to it. Somehow it’s become a bit like a short, nonverbal therapy session.