LA Women on Spring Break Busted for Trading Hydrocodone for Meth

When on vacation, people tend to break their own rules, push boundaries, and do things

People enjoying water, beach, skyline in Clearwater Beach Florida, Spring Break

When on vacation, people tend to break their own rules, push boundaries, and do things they ordinarily would not do. This may have been the case for two women from Louisiana spending their Spring Break in Panama City Beach, Florida, when they made plans to trade hydrocodone for crystal meth with an undercover investigator.

The investigator met the women near a motel, and after the exchange was made, the Washington County Drug Task Force arrested them both. A glass pipe, hypodermic needles, and metal spoons with residue of crystal meth were also found in their possession. Both women were arrested for sale and/or delivery of opiate drugs, use of a two-way device to facilitate a felony, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Though most people who make risky decisions on vacation hope that whatever happens doesn’t follow them home, these Louisiana women will likely be dealing with the fallout of their choices in Florida for years to come.

Tourist Mentality

In Louisiana, we are very familiar with the tourist mentality. People come from around the world for Mardi Gras and to enjoy our jazz festivals and other celebrations. We watch as people make choices while visiting that they likely would never make in their own hometowns, and we know firsthand what the repercussions for those choices can be.

Louisiana has the highest rate of prisoners per capita among all the states in the country and perhaps in the world. Some reports find that Louisiana has an imprisonment rate that is almost five times that of Iran and 13 times that of China. In the past 20 years, the number of people incarcerated in Louisiana has doubled, yet New Orleans still has one of the highest rates of homicide in the country. It is likely that these numbers are boosted by the fact that so many tourists come here and make extreme choices that end in arrest. It is clear that when it comes to drug use and abuse, what happens on vacation does not stay on vacation, especially in areas with high rates of tourism – party-centered tourism, in particular.

Staying Sober in Party Central

New Orleans, Baton Rouge – there is no shortage of clubs, bars, and parties going on all the time, with easy access to alcohol and any substance you can think of. For people who are in recovery, this constant temptation can be difficult, but it can also be seen as an opportunity. When one is constantly surrounded by drugs and alcohol, it makes it almost mandatory to have a plan in place to manage the situation when feeling triggered. For example, in order to avoid relapse due to repeated exposure to people who are under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, you can:

  • Have a list of people in your phone who are on call for you any time of day or night and willing to talk you through a stressful moment.
  • Know where the meetings are and what time they are happening no matter where you are.
  • Have things you can do for yourself in the moment to give you space to assess how you are feeling and make some positive choices (e.g., taking three deep breaths, going outside, counting to 10, etc.).
  • Talk to your therapist or counselor in advance and ask if it is okay if you text or call if you are in crisis.
  • Keep an electronic copy of an inspiring book or one about recovery on your phone, so you can always take a time out and read something that may speak to you.
  • Download apps that send you inspirational or recovery-related reminders and texts throughout the day.

Though it is true that you can never “pull a geographic” and move away from your stressors and problems, it may be prudent to consider moving neighborhoods if you happen to live above a bar, for example, or in a district where there is a great deal of crime, partying, or drug deals. Give yourself everything you need to be successful in recovery, including a home that is safe in every sense of the word.

How do you handle the temptation to take risks with your recovery?

Since joining the Townsend content team, Shlomo has become a thought leader in the addiction field. He is a Seinfeld junkie, a recovering Twitter fanatic, and a sports expert. He enjoys milk shakes and beautiful views from rooftops.