Purchasing Pot From The Provincial Government 2018-10-17
That's right, as of today the Ontario provincial government says it is groovy to use cannabis. We can legally only buy it from them or grow our own, which means that current typical acquisition methods remain illegal. Common sense shit like getting high at work on in a playground full of children is still punishable, but apparently walking down the street puffing on a joint is not.
It seems to me the provincial government may not have done a bang up job of thinking through the practical aspects of legalization, and I have been curious about just how their distribution system will function. So I am gonna see how it works. Hopefully this exercise will help answer some questions for other curious folks.
Making The Order (2018-10-17)
On the 16th, the OCS web site looked like this. However this morning it was full of products one could browse and buy. I added a pipe and 3.5g of Cold Creek Kush to my "bag". Frankly it was like buying computer parts from Best Buy or something. The descriptions were not great, but there was enough information there to at least get me to pick something. After tax and the $5 flat rate shipping it was just over $57. I of course received an email receipt like any other online shopping, and now guess the next step is to wait for an email to tell me it has been shipped.
The Phone Call (2018-10-20)
Today I called OCS at (888) 910-0627 to ask why I had received an Order Confirmation but no Shipping Confirmation, even though it has been three days since I placed the order. I was told [pretty much as I expected] that the provicial government is a lame organization which had no idea that lots and lots of people want pot and that they just haven't gotten around to actually sending me anything yet. I'm paraphrasing of course, but that really is the general idea.
Seriously, somewhere in some minutes from some meeting there must have been someone trying to estimate how many orders there would be in the first day. I mean I made my order in the first twelve hours that the site was available and I haven't been dealt with yet. How long do ya think it'll take for the people who are ordering right now, three days after it opened?
So you know who does a much better job of distributing weed then the provincial government? That's right... stoners. Nice job guys, you were upstaged by stoners.
The Tracking Number (2018-10-23)
Well I just got an email with a tracking number. It only took six and a third days to pack my order in a box and mail it. The tracking says it is being sent Xpresspost, but as near as I can tell it is still currently not in Canada Post's paws yet. I guess now I just have to keep my eye on the tracking information.
My order number was around 62000, and I have to imagine that by the end of the first day there had to have been 150000 or more orders. I can only imagine how long it'll take for orders to be filled that were placed a day or two later. :-(
Still Waiting (2018-10-24)
The tracking in the email I got yesterday still shows as "Electronic information submitted by shipper" which means:
The shipper has created a shipping label for this item and has sent us electronic information.
If no additional updates are showing in Track, it means we have not yet received the item. We will start tracking the item once we receive it.
So we are at one full week now and Canada Post has not yet received my weed. How long will people who order "today" have to wait? Perhaps the delay may be related to Postal workers griping about how hard they have it. I guess I won't know until the package arrives and I can see where it left from.
On The Way (2018-10-25)
As of this morning the tracking now shows that Canada Post has it. I guess it seems like this experiment has become more about Canada Post than the OCS department of the provincial government. Anyways, it says the expected delivery date is Tuesday the 30th. I guess we'll see about that.
Expected Delivery (2018-10-29)
At 10:50pm on the 29th the tracking looks like this:
So I am a little skeptical that it'll arrive in the next 69 minutes. Is it a bad sign when the current date is more than an hour in the future and the expected delivery is a day previous? My concern is that even if they deliver it "tomorrow", they might make a half assed effort and then just tell me to drive to the post office to pick it up. Now for you first worlders that might not be a big deal, but I live in the woods and only go past the stop sign a few times a month. And I'm not sure how far they'll make me drive since a small tornado seems to have destroyed the local post office a few weeks ago.
Out For Delivery (2018-10-30)
It is now the afternoon of the 30th, the tracking says it is "Out For Delivery", and the expected delivery date is today. Here's the updated screenshot. The postal worker just arrived with the package, and asked for proof of age. I thought this was a little weird because I am in my mid-forties, have some grey hair, and haven't been mistaken for a teenager in over two decades. The postal worker also seemed pretty meticulous about inspecting my PAL as identification.
Then there was a problem. The "scanner" wasn't working and without it I wouldn't be able to provide the digital signature required to prove I had accepted the item. After a few attempted reboots of this portable device and I was told the postal worker would have to call the office from the postal vehicle. A couple minutes later I was sitting in my front yard thinking:
Really? After all this, I was just two feet away from it and I am gonna have to wait at least another day? And what is the liklihood that anyone is gonna come back to deliver it on Halloween? It shouldn't make a difference I know, but government staff are not exactly famous for being diligent hard workers.
Anyways, the scanner eventually worked and the package is now here. Unfortunately I have a dog doing the "peepee dance" in my basement and it'll have to wait until we get back.
It's All About Canada Post (2018-11-15)
I really didn't want this experiment to be all about Canada Post, but that's pretty much how it turned out. The ocs.ca web site still has a warning at the top about the Canada Post rotating strikes, and I have to assume that it still takes a long time for people to get their weed. It's not like weed is hard to come by, so if you want weed right now then there are probably better ways to get it. If you are interested in specific strains, fancy specs, child proof bottles, warning labels, or pre-rolled weed, then by all means hit up the ocs.ca web site and wait a couple weeks to get your weed. If however you just want weed now, I have a feeling there are faster ways to get it without all the Canada Post drama.
As for anonymity or privacy, the ocs box was just a plain unlabeled box that looked like any other delivery. It is likely that nobody else would know what you are getting, unless they were savvy enough to notice your postal worker asking to see ID. I figure the privacy of it is about the same as the guy on the street corner, while the "selection" and "consistency" are probably better at OCS.