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Toast in Utah

The setting was an alpine lake, 7500 elevation in the Utah wilderness, an hour’s drive from Salt Lake, mid May 2004, a Saturday late afternoon.

The setting was an alpine lake, 7500 elevation in the Utah wilderness, an hour’s drive from Salt Lake, mid May 2004, a Saturday late afternoon. We hiked in a bit, set up two tents, and sat down with a pizza. I ate seven large mushrooms, stems, caps and all. They had a nominal amount of gray mold on them and tasted wretched. Last year I had a few experiences (my first with mushrooms) with what I was told were Liberty Caps, but these were a different variety. My two companions and I took probably a quarter ounce each.

I struggled to down the shrooms and felt my stomach wretch when I tried to swallow. The pizza and plenty of water helped. We sat around and passed a joint. The first effects were felt quickly and with a strong jerk. Within 15 minutes I had the feeling of swimming in something warm, all around me. The views were just stunning with the mountains all around showing color and the trees just moving and radiating color and feeling. I climbed a large rock and had an outstanding view of mountain valleys with Mount Timpanogas in the distance and I am having some classic symptoms of head expansion – everything around me has a depth and texture that is almost overwhelming and the sounds of the forest are stacking up in my mind and are reverberating in a kind of loop.

A bummer thought just hits me, “Why the hell do I plan and scheme to pull off this big charade and fuck up my mind…I’m not worthy, doom is approaching, what good is all this” etcetera. This kind of sets a somber mood so to turn it I give myself the task of gathering firewood to build a huge fire to protect us against some soon to follow, me thinks, nasty weather. I try to find wood, but soon decide I am incapable of performing any task oriented action. I can really feel the power of the shroom boiling up and coming on. I can’t find any pieces of wood for the fire that please me. I stumble across this large bush that had withered and died and was perfect for my needs so I fall to my knees and begin pulling pieces of wood and stacking it in my arm and I am so thankful for the shrub giving it’s self to me.

Heading back to the camp site with my firewood, I am just getting these incredible signals from the forest…it’s alive in a million ways with eyes watching and things occurring all around me. It is the jungle and it is alive. I get back to the camp site and know my companions are feeling it just as strong. I am walking in small circles holding my lower stomach and getting like waves of nausea, that wasn’t making me sick physically, just pulling me really hard to a more stoned place (?). I am getting those six million dollar man choooo-choooo-choooo-choooo-choooo-choooo sounds with trails when I move or see something else move. I’ m just holding my stomach and moaning Ooooooooohhhhh! and Ahhhhhhhhh! as each power wave hits me. I sit flat on the ground and see a purple moss covering everything. This is as heavy as I have ever had it

For the first time I really look at the face of one of my companions. A classic Madonna or Saint look with a brightness and pulsating glow coming from her face, her eyes are big as saucers and she is smiling the smile of one who knows what the hell’s going on and there’s a hummmm buzzzzzzing going out from her and it feels good. Totally out of character for our relationship (?), but I want to touch her, smell her, consumer her, in short to fuck her something terrible. I shudder and giggle. Jimmy the Cricket says not a good idea right now and I turn my face and am afraid to look at her and feel a twinge of shame (?) for my libido directed focus.

Events still building to a crescendo and I know there’s more coming down the pipeline and I think, “Can I handle more??” Things are really loud and I feel as if I can’t be heard above the roar. I feel pushed along. I am having a hard time standing and am walking half hunched over leaning side ways and I know I need to the lie down in the tent.

I enter the tent, losing more motor skills by the instant and I expend tremendous energy just getting my sandals off and lying on my sleeping bag. I am yawning deep and steady and must close my eyes, and I spent the next several (?) hours in the tent, in fetal position, eyes closed but never asleep. This entire part I find extremely difficult conveying. I am having things shown me and explained to me, ideas just click and I say to myself “aha! That’s it!”. I am hearing multiple sounds simultaneously and I don’t know what sound is from my memory, what sound I am imagining, or what sounds are coming from real time events. I am trying to process untold numbers of images, sounds, internal movie footage. On the one side I am feeling lower than a snake’s belly looking at bad things I’ve done to others and on the other side I am laughing in a low way and grinding my teeth, knowing that it all fits together right and I can see it clearly. I feel the love (?) and support and “we’ve been down this path and blazed the way and it’s rich and safe” power from a number of people and events. At one point I am riding a roller coaster in the dark and at the bottom of the ride I can see my car parked a few miles away and I have this fear or realization that I won’t know who I am when I get back to my car. I rolled with some really, wired and personal issues.

I could see George W. Bush wearing an Indian headdress riding a chariot up and down a dusty field really fast, cursing & screaming, with great power. I saw him playing role countless others have played; it’s just part of it all. I could feel a whirlwind of power and war, really taking my to the edge, I heard helicopters and knew police and rangers were outside my tent, come to arrest me. I saw Rumsfeld’s squinty eyes and could hear the endless droll that rolls out of his mouth like soft dog shit from an old bitch’s ass. I just laid there scarred feeling they were out to get me.

I occasionally heard my companions outside the tent making what I took for groaning sounds and at one point I thought they were speaking in tongues and talking like machines but I knew they were ok and I felt good knowing that they’re there.

I spent several hours in this condition in my tent. I came down quick and my first clear (?) thought is “what the FUCK was all that?!” It was really loud and strong and powerful, and hit me square on. I open my eyes but the tent is pitch black and I can’t find sandals, flashlight, or cigarettes. I hear a number of coyotes howling loud and close in the valley, and it scared me real and I laughed and I lay on my sleeping bag giggling, with butterflies in my stomach, stunned by the whole thing but happy and pleased with it. I felt stretched out, like the shit isn’t gonna fit back into the cabinet the same way. I staggered over to my friends’ tent and ducked inside and it felt really good and warm to see them and I tried the best I could to tell them what had happened. We all looked wired with wide eyes like we had just swam a big flood or had been through a tornado and even though they were there with me, I didn’t think even they would believe a fraction of what I thought, I thought had happened to me, and what it meant (?) even if I could tell them, which I couldn’t. My stomach hurt and I needed to pee.

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