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First experience with psychedelics

A new reality, a new playground

Growing up I have never used many drugs except alcohol and very occasionally weed and, I have to admit, I was a bit conditioned by the mass hysteria that surrounds every illegal-drug, seeing them as one of the worst things you can do to yourself and one of the lowest levels of morality for a civilized human being.

Somehow though, I have always been curious about psychedelics. I didn't know much about them, I had just heard that "they made you see stuff" and assumed that they would fry your brain if you used them, but still, I wanted to try them at least once in my life. If you "see things", I thought, those things must be hidden somewhere in your subconscious, you may get to understand more about yourself and it also sounded like fun. That's something I now understand better in the fascination and love I always had for dreams, good or bad didn't matter, as long as I could remember them in the morning, I was content, it was as if I had been on a gratuitous adventure. The possibility of living in a different reality is something I always wished could happen not only in dreams. But apart from dreams, the closest I could get was playing videogames and wishing to one day see technology making big steps in virtual reality (which seems to slowly be coming true nowadays).

After this introduction about myself, I can move on and talk about the trip:
Last summer, I finally got the chance to try psychedelics for the first time during a trip to Amsterdam. By that time my opinion on drugs was way more open minded than at 18 but still, my instinct of self preservation was stronger than my curiosity, so before leaving I spent more than a few hours reading about psychedelics online. And it was with profound surprise that not only I couldn't find a single source that talked about physical damage or risk of addiction, but many reliable sources mentioned benefits on a psychological level. The only risk (and the only thing all the anti-drug websites could put emphasis on) seemed to be the possibility of having a bad trip, something that really didn't bother me, particularly because I surely wasn't going to go for a heavy dose.

Anyway, the day we decided to trip, we bought 10 grams of truffles each and went to the big park called Vondel Park, there we picked a nice spot in the grass and ate our truffles.
That morning I had had breakfast later than my friends and also got a very filling one, so my stomach wasn't exactly empty even if it was almost 3 hours later. That's why after more than one hour, while my friends were already lying in the grass tripping I still couldn't feel anything. Now, when it comes to waiting I am the most childish person I know, I absolutely can't wait, for anything, so I sat there, went for a walk, sat there some more, then went for another walk and still nothing.
Not far from us another guy was sitting in the grass, clearly tripping, with one of the happiest expressions I have ever seen in my life and that made me feel even more impatient. I started thinking it wasn't gonna work because I didn't wait long enough after breakfast and so I decided to lay down, listen to some music and stop thinking about it.
And this is when I first noticed something, the music sounded not just nicer, but more engaging, more emotional, with my eyes closed every song evoked a scene fitting the sounds and a particular color was associated with the whole song. It was nice, but nothing to go crazy for to be honest. At that point one of my friends stood up and said he wanted to go somewhere else cause the effect had ended. I stood up and, still feeling sober, I thought that the effects had ended for me too and so I agreed to go pick up our bikes and move somewhere else. Of course I later realized that I knew nothing at that moment and the trip had barely even begun.
While walking to the bikes my mind started to get distracted, but it wasn't until I lost myself in thought looking at some strangers sitting in the grass while I was standing still in front of my bike that I realized that something was going on. We jumped on our bikes to ride to the exit and there "wooooah!". The bike-ride was simply amazing. I was feeling like I was being carried by the wind, I felt very light but also extremely coordinated and agile. The whole park became what I can describe as an enchanted wood: happy, magical, friendly, wonderful. The colors looked so nice and the sounds made by people, bikes and birds were in perfect harmony, as if someone had recorded and then edited them to sound as musical as possible to make a cheerful scene for a movie.

We then got out of the park (even if I was insisting on having another ride in it) and proceeded walking in some crowded street. The sounds of the street were as harmonius as the sounds in the park and god, how I loved everything and everyone. The light of the day was beautiful, the buildings were beautiful, the people were beautiful, the girls were more than beautiful...oh, I wish I knew a word to express a much higher beauty than "beautiful", cause cleary everything that I had given that adjective in my life didn't even come close to the beauty of what I was seeing now.
When we got to a coffee shop I decided to sit on a bench just outside, by myself, while my friends were inside so that I could be quiet with my thoughts and, also, the street looked way more interesting than the inside of the coffee shop. I sat there, thinking of how happy I was and that I had never felt an emotion like that before in my whole life, this was the kind of happiness that I could read about in a book or see acted in a movie but couldn't really comprehend and to be honest, didn't even think existed in real life. But now I was getting it, pure joy, a feeling of harmony and wonder and love for everything I laid my eyes on. And it didn't metter if I wasn't seeing anything that wasn't there (like the common misrepresentation of psychedelics led me to believe) cause everything was perfect as it was, there was no need to add anything at all.
I then took, what I like to call, a scientific approach to the experience and started analizing what was happening inside of me. The trip wasn't like anything I expected or even could expect, what amazed me the most was that I was feeling like a completely different person and yet I was feeling completely myself. I could compare what I was feeling at the moment with what I feel during ordinary consciusness with extreme lucidity. It was as if my brain had been rewired to analize informations in a different way, but at the core it was still me, my memories and my thoughts, experiencing the feelings of a different person with a different perspective. The street I was seeing was the same street I'd have seen if I was sober, same colors, same details, but felt way more meaningful, perceived in a completely different way. Same but different. Something any psychedelic user knows well, but to someone who thinks of reality as something static this can hardly make any sense.

The rest of the trip went pretty well and the comedown seemed to last forever so, while I was still tripping, I decided to experiment a bit with my sensations. I played a game on my phone to test my reaction and coordination and beat my high-score, then I sat on top of the boat where we stayed (the hostel was a small boat in the canal) while listening to some music and gazing at the sun setting. In that moment the atmosphere was simply perfect, the song that was playing very calm and relaxing, the sun was shining huge and red on the water and a small boat with a group of people having a party on it was coming towards my direction, a girl was standing in front of the boat, dancing.The whole scene looked like it was made for the end credits of a movie and that's how it felt like, the end credits of the best movie I had ever seen were rolling and I was there, thinking back at the whole day, from the frustration of the first 2 hours to the ecstasy that came after. I can't really explain what made that moment so special that I still think about it sometimes and feel better, but it just took my breath away.
The comedown, as I already said, lasted a lot and during that time, while I was still enjoying it and glad it was still going, I was also very excited at the idea of going back to normal, analize the experience with my sober mind and see what conclusions I would get to. And I couldn't wait to tell everyone of what an amazing thing I had just found.
The day after I felt great, but had a hard time admitting to myself that it had been one of the best (if not the best) experiences of my life. Afterall it was a drug that I took, if I needed to chemically alterate my brain to feel that happy, maybe I was having a pretty shitty life overall. Gladly, when I got home and started reading tons of trip reports, I found out that not only I wasn't the only one, it was actually pretty common.

Before trying psychedelics I sometimes had that feeling that life had lost most of its magic, I missed being a child, everywhere I looked it was dullness and responsibilities with very few enjoyable things left. Psychedelics were the door to a new world to explore that I needed or, better said, a way to explore that old world with a new perspective and new awareness. Knowing that there are still misteries that can't be analized and quickly explained with the cold rationalism I had grown so accustomed to use, I started feeling a child again, with a new huge playground full of wonderful things to see, discover and explore. Every time I think back at the experience, I have the feeling that that day, in Amsterdam, we discovered one of the best things we could ever find.

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