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Sweet Desolation

It all started when a friend of mine told me he knew someone that he could get shrooms from.

It all started when a friend of mine told me he knew someone that he could get shrooms from. Having only done them once before (and more than satisfied with the results), I was
intrigued, to say the least, and I promptly contributed my share to the ounce. So one fair summer day (around 3:00), some of us decided to dose. However, we did not have any
meeting spot, and I did not know the specific area to meet everyone else (the park where we went is _big_), so I figured I would just wonder through the park while eating the shrooms, and maybe I would run into them. Or not. It didn’t really matter to me, and as it turns out, it worked to my benefit that I never did meet them.

So I’m walking through the lower reaches of the park, stopping every once in a while to pull another few stems and a cap out of the baggy and munch on them, washing them down with Sobe Green Tea (even better than orange juice, IMHO), listening to the Beastie Boys (“Paul’s Boutique”) on my CD player.

Now, I don’t know when they started to kick in, but it happened when I noticed the music more than I previously had. I really started to get into the vibe, then I would notice things around me; each individual blade of grass swaying in the wind, water flowing down a stream, the mildness of the early fall breeze against my skin. And this is just the beginning...

Time for a CD change (which was a stressing experience in itself). Flipping through my catalog of CDs, I was looking for something with a good beat and highly psychedelic. My
result? “On the Floor, at the Boutique” mixed by Fatboy Slim. I pop it in and start walking around, with no destination in mind, just admiring nature and feeling freed from the shackles of modern life. Then the trip got kicked up a notch. I noticed this tree (a big one, about 70 feet tall) -- the kind that has infinite bunches of long green needles (sorry I don’t know the name) -- anyway, I started to see faces in these bunches of needles. Not the faces of anyone I knew or encountered previously, but just a generic face. As I looked closer, the face transformed: it was no longer the face of a mere human, but rather that of a D&D-esq Gnome / Elf. As I walked past it, it’s eyes followed me, not saying a word.

This did not scare me, but rather on the contrary enchanted me and put me in a mindset that is indescribable to those who have not done such consciousness expanding drugs
(LSD pales in comparison).

I know of this spot in the park; it’s a really cool plateau of sorts (although thick in greenery and trees) at the highest point of the park. It’s almost completely desolated, except for one walking path (unpaved, almost no one uses it) that goes remotely by it’s outer reaches. Others must now of this spot, because in the center clearing it’s sporadically littered with plastic cups and such, which leads me to think that it was used previously for a keg party. The hike there, which I suppose took about 15 minutes (I can’t tell, time was meaningless at this point), I had this growing feeling that I wanted to get away from society. When I got there, I briefly scoped out the land and as expected, it was void of all human aspects. This _is_ nature. This _is_ the state of being where appointments, time, worries, everything, is wiped away and your ego can start anew.

I came to the center clearing, and I decided to find a rock to sit down on and listen to some music that would get me further in touch with my inner self. I was in search of an
experience comparable to the total collapsing and inverting of the Freudian ego and superego that I have come close to experiencing on a previous trip. Again the music comes into play. I decide on “Third Eye” by Tool. Now, as I sat down and pressed play, the notes started to bring about a mental buildup of the beauty that surrounded me, and then all those things, each unique element, was cleared and merged into one entity. This entity was the lifeforce that secretly powered us all. It was everything and everything. Absoluteness embodied in one singular entity and embedded into my mind. Towards the middle of the song (the “prying open my third eye” part), I opened my eyes only to see that my head was now in my hands, resting in my lap, covering my eyes. I went to look up, and as the light beamed through my hands, I saw an actual eye (!) in my hands (not an eyeball, but rather the whole part of the face, complete with the eyelashes and brows) staring back at me. A big green eye, resembling my own, has merged into the palm of my hands. This was the most vividly clear and realistic open-eye (no pun intended) hallucination I have ever had. It may not seem like much, but it was so detailed that I could see every shade of green, the bottomless pupils, the faint and random red lines streaked across fields of white. I stared at this for what seemed like hours (although it was only maybe 30 seconds), and then I looked up at my surroundings, looked back, and it was gone. By that point the second solo of the song kicked in (for those of you who have not heard it, download it now!) in which I felt an absolute climitizing of all sensations and a literal physical raising of my mind (but I remained seated). However, it was put
back in it’s right place with the final “prying open my third eye”. I then stood up, trying to contemplate what just happened, but it was beyond my mental bounds at that point (however, it was seemingly embodied in my memory).

From that point on, I felt.... different (to say the least). It was indescribable in it’s nature, because I’ve never felt anything like this before. My personality was actually transformed into that of what I refer to as a “15th century philosopher”. I decided to walk about this upper area of the park (with no music on) along forgotten paths and the neglected landscape. This was one of the most beautiful experiences of my life. I would walk along these paths, stopping occasionally to admire the foliage (like a patch of slender trees, leaves in all the extraordinary autumn shades of yellows, reds and browns), while writing some kind of melodramatic prose in my mind. Mumbling strings of seven syllable words, but together in the style of a Shakespearean sonnet (that’s when I came up with the phrase “sweet desolation”). I vaguely remember at one point saying something along the lines of going to a meeting with the thane of Cawdor (MacBeth, anyone?). This went on for what
I figure to be about an hour and a half, although every minute was a lifetime during this whole trip. It was abruptly interrupted when I saw in the distance some people passing on one of the trails. I couldn’t tell if they were coming towards me or not, so I decided to play it safe and start walking in the opposite direction, knowing I would come back to either a street or a better known part of the park. So ends my little escape from civilization.

When I did get back to a part of the park I recognized, I started to head towards a friend’s house where there was a party going on. I had no idea what time it was, but the sun was almost setting and from that I figured it was about 6:00 and I had been walking for the past three hours. While walking to the house (which is about a 20 minute walk), I passed these two guys on a park bench who looked very suspicious to me. They were having a conversation, and before I passed I paused my CD player so I could hear what they were saying. As I walked by I heard one say to the other “hey, look at that guy”. This really worried me for a minute -- was it that obvious I was tripping? I did shrug it off eventually though and was able to walk on. I was very paranoid walking down the streets (especially when crossing).

I finally arrived at my destination, and I felt a sense of coming home. The house was full of friends, however I also felt slightly uncomfortable. With any psychedelic, one little bit of worry can evolve and engulf you. This is bad. After briefly saying hello (actually, I said: “in two words, ‘fuck reality’”.) I went into the basement to try and contemplate what was happening. I paced rampantly, feeling somewhat of regret for taking shrooms, but this wore off as I decided to go back upstairs, sit down, and watch TV. They were watching “Fight Club”, which was a very good movie to watch (tripping or otherwise). I felt like I was in the movie, especially when they would do all those neat cinematography tricks (my favorite being the part when he’s describing his apartment, and all the items pop into place like the Ikea catalog). We got through most of the movie, but the 2000 World Series would be coming on soon, and the host of the party (and alot of others) wanted to watch it. There went my attentiveness. From that point on I was just sitting there listening to music, playing guitar and talking with people about my trip. Everyone whom I told agreed it was the weirdest and most fascinating trip they have heard about, and is by far the greatest experience I have ever had on any drug, ever.

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