Chapter 1 : Golden Caps
April 19th, 2000 The morning started off with 1/8th ounce of mushrooms at 9 AM followed by a a tall glass of local fresh squeezed orange juice. They are the finest Golden Cap Psilocybin mushrooms you’d ever seen. Their shiny bronze heads sit atop a skinny and shriveled grey stem. They taste like poison. The citrus washes them down well, killing the taste, and is supposed to enhance the visual hallucinations.
By 10 AM it was coming. The poison mixing in my system. A kind of anxious feeling comes over me, like something big is about to happen. Not sure what to do or how to act, where to sit or when to talk. A group decision is made to walk down to the beach, a mere 10 min journey. I am happy to get outside. The idea of the open air makes the apartment seem like a prison. We take bong loads of a weed. The nugs look like little furry animals with bright orange and red hairs that dance around fuzzy green truffles. The bong is 10 years old and hand blown by Jerome Baker himself. The glass shines in the morning sun like a triumphant sword blessing us on our journey. The high lifts the spirits and intensifies the sun as we step outside.
The palm trees are are brighter green than I remember. Why is everyone staring at me? They tease me for admiring the foliage. But looking at wildlife is one of my favorite parts of the tripping. Will anyone ever now that about me? We move on around the corner.
The concrete sidewalk is hot, dusty and anything but pleasant. But the small plants that sprout through the cracks give me a sense of hope and wonder about nature. The sun’s heat rises for a second. I can feel the slight change in temperature. The rays vibrate and the high pitch tone resonates in the distance. Crosswalk.
The cars wiz by like steel deathtraps. Why the fuck did we invent these things? We miss the whole journey moving that fast. The lights change and the world stops for us. We step into a space that would have killed us ten seconds earlier. A picture of a bloody accident flashes through my mind. Suddenly I feel the need for nature.
The wooden planks leading to the stairs down to the beach are broken and splintered. They make xylophone like sounds as we walk across. We pass some people coming the other way and I swear I know them, but they say nothing. Maybe I don’t know them. The smell of the sea wafts through the air.
Chapter 2 : The Ocean
The sand is hot as we walk to the water. We are all starting to sweat as mid-day arrives. The sun is directly above us and my shoulders are starting to burn. One of the girls strips down to her bikini and runs to the waves. Two more go, then me.
The cold sting to the toes wakes me up. The seas stretches into the horizon. The water is a deep blue with white icing. The waves are moving fast. The jolt of reality kicks in when I dive into a wave. It is fucking cold! A surge of energy fills me and I begin swimming into the horizon passing the group.
I must have swam for a while. The waves were high enough to bob me up and down at least a meter. In the valleys of the waves I see nothing but the blue sky. I stop to catch my breath, float and look up. The high of the mushrooms reaches it’s peak.
From my point in space-time the entirety of the world is behind me and the infinite universe straight ahead. I close my eyes, let go of everything I know and feel and begin falling towards Earth. Time stops and the world goes silent. I sink into the deep blue and leave my body. Under my closed eyes the color changes from orange to black. I dream of psychedelic swans.
A cold chill creeps in and pulls me back. I open my eyes and swim to the surface, look around and try to get my bearings. I see nothing but ocean. I turn around. I see nothing but ocean. What the fuck? I turn again 45 degrees, and again, nothing. The waves are too high. Shit.
I look up. The sky is completely the same color. No clouds or any other way to tell North from South. WTF? I start swimming back the direction I came, I think. I imagine I’m in the middle of the ocean during a shipwreck. What a horrifying experience that would be.
Note to self: Don’t get shipwrecked.
I finally reach a place where I can see the shore. I am pretty close to out of breath. What the fuck was I thinking? What a fucking awesome peak!
I let the waves push me onto the beach like a dying whale. The sand is gritty and exfoliating. I can feel each grain. I wonder if there are some grains that have never been touched by humans before me.
The walk back to the group gives me time to reflect on my half naked state. Why do I feel self-conscious about my body? Why do we even wear clothes? I look at the people I am with. I notice their clothing, it looks funny, like monkeys in clothes. The sand is scorching my feet. Where are my flip-flops?
The short moment admiring the view is the beginning of the end. I mentally and emotionally start to separate from the group. Their faces look familiar but I don’t remember who they are. Do I know them? I came with them right?
Chapter 3 : Bloodbath
We head back up the sandy beach stairs. There seem to be more now that we are going back up. A lot more. The xylophone of wooden planks sings for us again, but this time in reverse, like we are going backwards in time. Crosswalk.
The cars look even more bizarre now with their smiling grills and colorful shells. The people inside are aliens flying their decorated spaceships to a time and place I will never know. I blink and we are standing in front of a restaurant. A fast food restaurant.
I can’t read the sign because the bright red and yellow sign is melting together into blobs. The mental trip has passed and now my visual interpretation of the world is beginning to reject the laws of physics. We enter the establishment and I no longer understand the purpose of this place. The very thought of food becomes foreign to me. The pattern on the floor starts to flow towards me in all directions. The backlit menu above is melting and dripping onto the floor.
Something catches my eye and I look towards the dining area. What are these people doing? The place has gone crazy. The walls and tables are covered with blood. The people in this place become serpentine and appear to devour their food like wild animals. They tear at the object in front of them with looks of hate and anger. The crazed and thrashing manner in which they shove matter into their face holes is alien-like to me. The growls mixed with squishing and slurping makes my stomach turn.
My group finishes ordering and moves in ushering me towards the carnage. As we walk to our table I try not to notice the beasts around me as they continue with thier meals. I felt uncomfortable seeing it, as if I caught someone on the toilet or in the middle of having sex.
We sit down and someone puts a burger wrapped in paper in front of me. I can not look at it let alone eat it. Fuck this. I get up and walk out ignoring the calls for me.
The scorching heat feels freeing as I emerge from the cave of blood. I turn right and begin walking. Just had to get out of there.
Chapter 4: Where Am I?
The apartment was just up the street on the left. A white stucco exterior could grate cheese and the tropical palm trees were familiar but out of place in this dump. A real shit hole with a great view. But somehow it wasn’t there anymore. I continue walking.
The city is so suburban. I don’t remember this. The houses look old and unkept like old people who don’t care anymore live in them. A depression falls over me. My sand-filled flip flops are now feeling like a punishment and this new dimension I stepped into a sort of depressing hell. Just as I think about turning around I hear a familiar voice. It is one of my group. The apartment is one street over and I decide that I have to get out of this town.
We smelly, sweating bunch of tripping idiots stumble back into the apartment calling dibs on the shower and the the bong. The group splits and I am stuck on the bong team. A couple of heavy hits later my depression is replaced with pure lethargy. I sink into the couch. Someone passes me a balloon. It’s nitrous oxide. I inhale the gas slowly and hold my breath. The world goes silent for the second time today.