Going Against the Grain


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175 in stock


By John Simons

ISBN: 978-1-84991-314-0
Published: 2010
Pages: 74
Key Themes: autobiography, drugs, addiction, personal growth


This is a true account of a cocaine smuggler in the 21st century and what it was like to be involved in this high risk business. It is one man’s story from beginning to end but there are hundreds of people languishing in prisons all over the world that have been on the smuggling gig. It is not a long story but it follows our man through the mayhem and madness of the smuggling world in a much laid back manner. This is not the guns and violence type of story but it is honest and heartfelt and whatever your view on the DRUG scene the author has tried to “humanise” this story. It may take you on a few twists and turns on the journey but it is all relevant and hopefully you will reach the conclusion with a good feeling.

About the Author

John Simons was born in Berwick on Tweed 22nd August 1952 and lived in Wooler in Northumberland for the first 6 years of his life. His dad was a sailor but when he left the sea he moved the family to Gravesend in Kent, John as well. John was educated at The H.M.S. Worcester nautical training college, a proper English “Public School” with all the posh folk to go along with it. There he learned how to become an officer and a gentleman and the rudiments of shipboard life and of navigation and everything else nautical. He then went on to become an apprentice navigating officer (cadet in short) with The Scottish Ship Management and to John this was manna from heaven. He was in his words “being paid to travel the world and chase women” and had the best job “in the world”!
John soon found he was suffering under an illusion and on the long trips across the Pacific he would ruminate over the whys and wherefores of life and began to understand that there was more to this life than met the eye.

After a lot of thought John packed in his career with the Merchant Navy in order to “find out what it is all about”. He went to live in a commune in Lancashire and really “dropped out, tuned in and turned on”, as they used to say but it wasn’t in the hippie lifestyle that he found some sort of fulfilment. What was bothering John was the same thing that bothers all of us at some point in our lives, “why am I here”? He needed answers and to that end he went looking, without knowing what it was he needed to find or where to find it. In the course of his search he came across a young Indian man called Maharaji who said he could show him who he was, not just pretty words but an experience. He revealed him a thing we call Knowledge and from that moment on the answer was evident for John, he had searched the world only to find what he was looking for was already within him.
John went on to get married and have 2 children both of whom are now in their thirties, one is in Australia and the other in Frome in Somerset. He split from his wife early on in the marriage but became a single parent with his son while the daughter stayed with her mum.

John has had a long and varied career and has had a lot of fun doing it all, whether it is messing about with cars or chopping down trees or being put upon by this insane system we have to live with. One thing John can’t abide is hypocrisy which is all we have to put up with from politicians and other so called luminaries we have spouting forth their opinions with gay abandon while the rest of us have to suffer their greed and relentless legislation putting all the power into the wrong hands.

John’s mum died last year and left him a bit of cash so he bought a plot of land in France and he hopes to retire there at some point but at present John is currently looking after his dad down in deepest Hampshire while trying to get to his land in France whenever the opportunity presents itself.
John started writing purely by accident when he was asked to write a “disclosure” while in prison and the disclosure went on for a while, about 40,000 words to be precise and it ended up being published as Prison and Beyond, his first attempt but not his last, this is testament to that.

Book Extract


This is a story about my time as a drug smuggler and was the culmination of years of debauchery where the quest to keep on living my hedonistic lifestyle required a large input of cash on a regular basis. Working as a builder was out of the question as I required time to recover from my ever increasing indulgence most mornings, I was an alcoholic, a philanderer, a crack head and a few other labels that people liked to stick on me. I went into this new employment with my eyes open and the thought of the money was always foremost in my mind, loads of it too! I liked to be in pubs having a drink with my mates and generally being “Jack the Lad” and this all requires finance, which is in short supply unless you happen to be rich, which the majority of us are not. So any opportunity to better my financial standing without any financial outlay of my own and promising substantial rewards needed to be investigated. If I could have regulated my spending to come in under my income then I should have been ok without undertaking risky employment but I couldn’t and did not want to either. I was already involved in distributing weed and pills all over the place but this was pin money really and I had my mind set bigger things, always the dreamer. .

I never got too involved with the dealing side of the cocaine business; I was just a “mule” which is a beast of burden for those of you who don’t know this startling fact. I was never what you might call a dealer, although I did dabble in it, Basically I just picked the stuff up at one end and dropped it off at the other end and got paid, just like a truck driver! So I ended up becoming a cocaine smuggler, this is my story and I may shoot off into other little scenarios along the way but I will get back to the meat and potatoes at some point. A story is not complete if it is not told properly and if I missed all the little asides it would detract from the whole thing and no one wants to be short changed, do you? All will be revealed in the course of the story and, as I like to do when I read, you can make your own pictures from the words you read. I hope they are good ones because despite the moral and legal aspects of smuggling I had an enjoyable time doing it. Most of the time anyway!


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