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Berkeley Trip

First a little background.

First a little background. I know everyone wants to skip ahead to the descriptions of the visuals but please bear with me, it’s worth it. I am an 18 year old male, I live in the SF Bay Area in California. This trip report describes the second time I have eaten mushrooms. A brief disclaimer: I will be describing the duration and time of the trip, as well as the visual phenomena, in approximations. I will try to make it easy to visualize what I was seeing, as those who have not yet had mushroom experiences may find it hard to visualize. I arrived at my friend’s house in Berkeley at approximately 4:45pm on a Sunday. We had planned on eating the shrooms the day before, however due to problems with the guy who was supposed to sell them to us, we didn’t get them until Sunday afternoon. I was a bit hesitant at first, simply because of thoughts in the back of my mind about the type and quantity of the mushrooms we were eating, mostly because I hadn’t been there to witness the transaction, but I got over it and downed the suckers. There were a bunch of small caps and a few stems, measuring out to 3.5 grams (an eighth). I chewed them up pretty well, and since I don’t really mind the taste, I just chased them with water. We ate them at around 5:15pm. After around 15-20 minutes, I began to feel a mild drunkness. It was different than being drunk from alcohol, obviously, but that is the best comparison I can draw. I decided to sit on the bed, as it was just easier than standing up or walking around. My friend said, “Hey, look at the cabinet”, as he motioned towards a chest of drawers about 5 feet in front of us. I looked at it, and saw nothing for a second, but then, just slightly, I thought I saw the cabinet drawers moving around. I went “Damn, lets close em!” and ran up to close all the drawers. After that, they didn’t really move at all. I decided I had to go to the bathroom, and as I turned around to look at a floral pattern on the glass doors of the shower, it appeared as though the entire glass panel bent slightly. Now, my first trip with mushrooms had been at night, and I had a very low dose, approximately 1.5 grams. There were almost no visuals to speak of, so this came as quite a shock to me. I have read countless trip reports, but it didn’t really sink in that it was actually going to happen to me, right now! I ran back to my friend’s room, and found him intently focused on the wooden windowsill. I walked in, and decided to see if I was getting any Closed-Eye Visuals. I closed my eyes, and found that I could create patterns behind my closed eyes. I was able to make a train track type of thing, and then these dancing guys appeared, and they wouldn’t go away, so I opened my eyes. Keep in mind that these weren’t very crisp hallucinations, but seemed to be manifestations of the light show you see when you close your eyes sometimes. I sat down at his computer, and he recommended I look at the floor. I glanced down and found nothing interesting for a second or two. Then, for a second, I thought I saw the grain move a bit. I jumped down from the chair I was sitting in, and focused entirely on the hardwood floor paneling. Slowly, the very grain of the wood began to flow and wriggle around within itself. The grains stretched and flowed along the floor, and I just about flipped out right there. That was my first actual visual hallucination. It didn’t frighten me at all, far from it. I was ecstatic! I said “Oh my goodness…. The floor is MOVING!” After watching this and other things in his room move around like that, we decided to go outside. Berkeley is a very unique kind of place. For those who live in the area, we were walking from the corner of Browning and Channing, to the fairly busy intersection of San Pablo and Channing. Let me just say that traversing this short distance took a very, very long time. My attention span while on mushrooms is almost nil. I was simply so distracted by everything I was seeing. Everything I looked at had a different facet to it that was very strange and beautiful. If anyone has ever seen the Simpson’s episode “El viaje mysterioso de nuestro Homer” where Homer eats the Guatemalan insanity peppers and goes on a strange, cool trip, that is what I felt like. I wasn’t getting and very dramatic hallucinations, but everything seemed so… mystical. Like I was in total control of everything, and everything was completely at peace. During this point outside, things were very archetypal. I was not “Joe”, walking through Berkeley, but instead I was Man, walking on the Earth. I felt like everything had an alter ego that could only be seen on shrooms. For instance, as I walked down the street, I saw what would have normally been a rather ordinary tree. Granted, it had full, green leaves and yellow flowers, but on an ordinary day I would not have thought twice about it. Instead, I looked at this tree and as soon as I focused on it, it began to change. The best analogy I can draw is that it looked like it was imploding on itself. Not changing in mass however, but everything tangible was swirling and morphing and the tree seemed that it had a mind of it’s own. I then realized that it was not just this one tree that was writhing and existing in this surreal landscape, but it was everything. I looked at the ground, and saw the cracks in it expand and snake outward. I looked at another tree and it took on the same life at the yellow-flowered one. The grass swirled a bit, but was a bit unexciting. I then saw the cars moving down San Pablo. The brightness of the lights stood out, and we went down to investigate. We both realized as we were walking that it was fairly obvious that we were tripping. After all, we were walking down the street like two little kids, wide-eyed and minus attention spans of longer than ten seconds. I could not concentrate on a single thing. Even while I was watching the most interesting visuals, like the trees, I would find my eyes darting somewhere else. By this time it must have been an hour into the trip, and as we sat down near a bus stop on San Pablo Ave, the streetlights were coming on. I seemed to meld with the bench, and it felt like it was almost a part of me. It was very comforting, and I felt very peaceful. I kept going “See that building? That building is a painting.” And to some extent, it felt like we were walking through an expressionist painting. Surreal is the best way to describe it. I kept looking at things, and I could make the textures on them warp at will. Cars drove by and their lights would blur slightly as I watched them. It seemed like they were traveling slowly, and that we were almost underwater, even though I knew that we weren’t and that the cars were traveling at a normal rate of speed. It just seemed that way. I attribute this to the fact that sounds kept echoing in my head, making it seem like I was underwater. Suddenly, I really felt like I had to go to the bathroom. So, we reluctantly headed back to the house, after a mere half hour of being outside. And, of course, we got distracted on the way back. Plus, there was this guy on a bike, and he was looking at us very strangely. I commented to my friend about how his damn brakes were making a lot of noise, and he yelled something like “What you guys got?” and started coming right for us. In my current state, it scared me quite a bit to have this hairy Berkeley hippie dude on a bike coming after us, but I figured the most he could do would be to try and rough us up a bit, but we could have taken him, I’m sure. But, he hopped up on the sidewalk and was bearing down on us from about 10 feet away. I stepped out of his path, and he yelled “EXCUSE ME!” and rode right on by. Damn hippies, I thought. Still, it almost took the magic out of the situation. I tried not to let it get to me, but I was picking up some very weird vibes from this guy, so I went back inside the house. I played with my friend’s dog for a while, a golden retriever, and for a second it looked like the hair on him was flowing around. But the dog was acting pretty strange, so we yanked him out of the room and continued our voyage. My friend had put up several high quality posters that had been printed out on nice glossy paper. They were of various Mandelbrot and Julia set fractals that had been messed with in PhotoShop a bit, and then printed out. They made for hours of fun, it was great to look at them and see the color palette cycling a little bit, and have the swirling patterns actually swirl. But, they really didn’t seem as alive as the trees did. I looked at the material on my friend’s chair. It was a weave of cream-colored string that zigzagged in a regular, repeating pattern. But now, the string was moving quite a bit, and flowing in its zigzag pattern. For a second I saw it do the same implosion thing that the tree did, but it had basically stopped. I looked at other things around the room. His rug had these Aztec-style guys in ponchos, and they were waving and jumping around for a while, which was interesting. I looked at the floor again and the wood was still flowing nicely. We turned on the TV and started to watch Alice in Wonderland, the ABC special that was airing that night. Having seen the cartoon, I had some appreciation for the movie, and it was pretty well acted. I didn’t get a whole lot of “shroomy” effects from the TV, but it was just as well, for we began to come down around 3.5 hours into it, and I had to eventually leave and drive home. We later tried to figure out whether we had a level 2 trip or a level 3 trip, because although the shrooms looked like Psilocybe cubensis, we really could not be sure. Plus, it seemed as though we hit the peak of our trip while we were sitting on the park bench i.e. visuals and feelings were most pronounced when I was there. If an experienced shroomer could possibly shed some light on the situation, feel free to email me at rev@nonreality.com. That basically sums it up, and I hope everyone enjoyed this trip report as much as I enjoyed experiencing it and writing it.

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