Happy Birthday, Jules!
Had it not been for his gruesome and senseless murder on 3 July 2020, Jules would have turned 61 today. Though our hearts are sore, we can’t help but smile when we think about what he’d have made of this year. Phrases like “a senseless fuckery” and “wave your rights goodbye, matey” come to mind.
The Fields of Green for ALL crew wanted to celebrate Jules on this day and remember him and what he’s done for us. Our emotions are still raw, even though it’s already been 4 months and 4 days since he was taken from us. But we’ll never stop talking about him and we’ll never forget!
The last conversation I had with Jules, was on the Hotbox show, the night he was murdered. Some of those last words between us was him thanking me. Some of the last whatsapps, were him saying well done, with a screenshot of me playing the D-Day livestream. How special a note to leave our friendship on. The note that rings true of just what kind of calibre of a human Jules was. A human being, and a human doing. His actions always spoke as loud as his words. The type of person who took the time to say thank you. Who took the time, his time – even when busy or distracted by the thousand colourful endeavours of his life – to say well done. I don’t think I really ever said thank you enough to him.
He was the type of person who supported passion, giving you opportunities and pushing you forward without you even realising it. Jules was honest. Jules said the things that needed to be said, both good and bad. You could count on Jules to be himself, 100% of the time. It’s strange how, for someone who I never really saw sit still, I now find it’s in the stillness that his presence speaks the loudest and his voice lingers the longest. On days like this, it still doesn’t seem real. It still hurts. And we are still fighting. For Myrtle. For ourselves. For our community. For Jules. 💚 – Robyn
How do I put these feelings into words? The English language just doesn’t seem to be able to explain this deep crushing feeling in my soul. It’s like a huge Jules-shaped pit in my heart, at times swirling with rage, other times overflowing with tears, just deep, endlessly deep. Always there.
I miss you Jules. We all do. Every single day. In so many ways.
You always looked to find a way to connect with people, to find their light, even if they didn’t see it for themselves, and tried to help it shine brighter. You were happiest when those you loved were happy. You loved an entranced audience. Your stories. Ah man, I would give anything for one more chance to sit on the stoep and listen to you animatedly telling us just one last tale of what could have been one of a thousand adventures from your life, your travels, your experiences. All the best stories were times spent with Myrtle, the way your whole being lit up for her, the way you love her showed me what true, for real, actual love is. Oh boy, and could you throw a party!!! Dude.
I often look across the farm and fully expect to see you walking up to the house from the workshop, that quirky smile as you come to tell us about some randomly insane phone call or a glorious idea that’s just come to you. Or even better; in your hands is a little tub for us to sample, ‘definitely the next Amber Cup winner’ you’d say with a proud grin. Or you’re grumbling. Damn cops are out there destroying peoples lives, or one of the usual trolls is up to their low down snarky trickses again.
In fact, our very last conversation was about the trolling. The last message from your phone to mine was the night you were taken from us. I hadn’t been on social media much for a few days, I was too busy looking after my mom. We had a coffee date for the next morning before I had to go home, you were going to show me all the posts I hadn’t seen yet, I was cross (I always get a bit cross at the trolling, it’s so low vibration and often borderline defamatory), but we were going to have a laugh anyway.
That was at 22h33. They came at approximately 01h55 and everything changed.
Every. Single. Thing.
Those evil, vile soul-less bastards (who are still out there possibly roaming a street near you might I add), stole the life of a legend, a hero, if I may be so bold. Not only in the cannabis community. To me. To my sons. Jules, you were the big brother I’d spent most of my life wishing for. Family for the soul. It feels like I’d just found you, 7 years of friendship weren’t nearly enough, there was still so much I wanted to learn from you.
I can’t imagine a day where I won’t think of you. Such a day will never exist. Happy Birthday Matey. – Jo
Sitting on your Jazz farm, rain pouring outside, blessing this land you loved so much. Thinking back to the past few years, I am so grateful I got to spend so much time with you and Myrts! Always a listening ear with real advice and a bucket of laughs just next door whenever needed. We miss you so much matey! Thank you for showing me how much fun life can actually be and not to take it all so seriously (most of the time ;)) You inspired me everyday to be where I am now and I am forever grateful our paths crossed. We will keep fighting and pushing to see even an inch of justice for you and this senseless murder! Good people disobey bad laws but not in this case.
The road has been hard but everyday is a new opportunity for us all to move forward to keep the fire Burning! Keeping our faces to the sun, we remember you Jules in all we do and always will! I miss you. – Ami
From Cutting Meat to Cutting Clones
“Fucking hell, I’ve never met a stoner butcher before, is that safe matey?!” were the first words Jules belted out to me in the noisy crowded foyer during the Medical Cannabis Convention at Wits in 2017. He said it with a cheeky smile before darting off in the opposite direction.
That night, after hearing Jules and Myrtle speak, it felt like everything I was doing in my life at that point was meaningless, so unbeknownst to Jules, a flame was ignited inside of me that keeps getting hotter and brighter.
My simple appreciation for Jules came from his honesty as well as his no F’s given attitude to injustice, with an anchor point of “Cognitive Liberty”. He made me understand, through plants, that it is my human right to be able to change my consciousness and escape my “reality” however and whenever I see fit. It’s a scary world out there, but growing, touching, smelling, eating and smoking plants like Dagga, slow my world down, blocking out the noise, making me present in that moment. Thank you Jules for everything, the conversations we had and watching you DO, not just talk, makes me want to be my own individual. I’m happy and comfortable being different just by having been in your presence.
Your utterly heart breaking death was the first time I ever experienced someone close to me dying. Nothing feels safe or normal anymore, life itself feels finite now. I just hope I get to live the colourful and fulfilling life you did before it is my time. Happy Birthday Matey, can’t wait to catch up and smoke fat dabs with you in the cosmos one day. – Suresh
Jules’ last words to me were “Thank you for everything.” It was Thursday night, 2 July 2020. I’d rushed from my fulltime job to the Jazzfarm to do some admin and sit in on the #Hotbox Show. We were doing an update on the show about our #CannabisCanHelpSA campaign and he was so proud of what we’ve done. I will always remember that night. I’ll also remember that afternoon, earlier, when I’d just got there. Jules promptly escourted me from the lounge to the office to work with the rest of everyone, mumbling something about the team taking over the lounge. We still giggled about it when I got to the office.
A few hours later, Jules had been murdered. Everything changed, it’s like the lenses of my glasses were changed to a different colour and visibility, my entire perspective on life, my choices and my circumstances changed overnight. I’m sad that it had to take Jules being murdered for me to really see what’s going on in my life and head. I wish I had more time with him so that I could learn more about this life and consume the little bits of knowledge that he’d randomly throw out at any given time. But here’s what I did learn, directly from Jules:
- You’ll only see what you want and are ready to see.
- You never have to lie – remembering the truth is easier.
- You should especially not ever lie to yourself – you are your own best friend.
- If you can help someone, you should.
- Stop fucking around.
Thank you for what you’ve left us, Jules. Thank you for lessons that we can still learn from you, even though you’re not here. I hope you’re having one helluva day with Zog the Dog and Daisy Cupcake. We miss you all. – Marleen
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