Dreaming of a Heavenly Rehabilitation Center for Smokers


The waves roar as they crash the sharp jagged rocks below the cliff. As you stand on a bright Sunday morning in a porch facing the ocean, you listen as the seagulls squawk away. You think about what they're saying and imagine them having a conversation.

Breathe freely,

We are full of glee, 

We live life.

So should you. Time to go and see–

Breathe happy

Squawk, squawk!

You smile and wave at them as if they were your flying feathery friends greeting you good morning. They squawk more in reply. 

You sit down, and all is at peace. There are no problems, no qualms, nobody to trigger those smoking inducing scenarios. The nearest cigarettes would be 50 kilometers away. Most of all, you can stay as long as you like.  

To me, the ideal cigarette/smoking rehabilitation center would look like heaven. It would be a nice white house on a cliff, spacious accommodations, plenty of room to roam, with a nice and pleasant staff, good food, hearty and relaxing music, plenty of fresh air from the ocean, and a ton of relaxing activities that take your mind off the rigors of life. 

I'm not entirely sure if such a place exists, so do indulge me as I fantasize that I could be able to go in a place as such as this. In the mornings, I'd have a bevy of green tea to choose from. The server would smile as she sets the table placements in front. I would smile and say, 

"Hey good morning Casey, how are your kids doing?" 

She would then smile and say quite joyfully "They're having a great time. Junior's practicing his swing and Julie's getting ready for her piano recital."  

"That's wonderful! Wow! I look forward to it. Will she be performing here?"

"Yes she will, she told me that she's going to play the classics." and with that she pours some lemonade on a tall clear glass. "Alright, I'll be back with your breakfast." She smiles again. 

While waiting, I see two fellow cigarette patients, an elderly gentleman and a woman in her forties. They approach my table and I stand to greet them. "Hey, how are you two? Do join me! Do join me! Yesterday's exercises were awesome weren't they? Jason is a really good motivator.

Matching my genuine joy in seeing them, we regale the previous night's rehabilitation and motivational activities with a true zest for living.

Breakfast arrives and I excuse myself for my boorish manners, "Umm, bacon, with perfectly toasted bread, sunny side up egg, butter, some cream cheese and an option to choose orange marmalade." The winds momentarily raise the sheet of white cloth as we all smile at the notion of the wind taking our breakfasts away. 

The lady, whose name is Rachel, then queries quite seriously, "Dan, how was the glass room?

The elderly gent beside, then shifts a bit at the serious question. I reply in a nonchalant and matter of fact way, "Well, it was full of glass walls. The bed was a little bit stiff though.

The Glass Room

Designed by a well-known psychiatrist and architect, the glass room is the heavenly equivalent of solitary confinement. Though not a room in the truest sense of the word, it is a large space in the middle of the house, on the second floor, with no ceiling or roof above it. A Zen garden decorates the inside with a single white bed placed in the center. On the Northern side, you could find the lavatory and shower room covered with bamboo fencing and routinely maintained by one of the facility stewards. The Southern side is where you can eat and replenish yourself while inside. It is a place of reflection, tranquility, openness, transparency, hope and ultimately, control. 

Patients in the facility schedule their stays in the glass room. The longest that anybody has stayed inside is a full week. 

Designed in such a way to prevent the most serious of nicotine-induced urges, it is for all intents and purposes, an extremely glorified jail cell for those who can no longer control their smoking habits. Once you schedule your stay, you can only go out when you have attained that sense of normalcy and control. That schedule, of course, is co-created by your facility guide. You can only go out once the schedule has expired. 

"It was okay. I was able to finish reading Book 1 of the Game of Thrones." I replied. "A bit cold at night, but the fresh air helped me a lot. It still needs a lot of improvements, but I imagine that I'll probably build one for my own house when I check out."

Rachel nods then smiles. She hasn't tried it yet since she was a newcomer, having only stayed for a week in the facility. 

The gentleman then stands up and excuses himself, "Well, I'm off to do some hoops, care to join me Danny?

"That'd be great." I say enthusiastically, "Nothing better to keep the blood agile.

Creative Commons Image via Wikimedia Commons

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