Citation: seebueb. "A Trip Spent Walking and Police Escorting: An Experience with Mushrooms - P cubensis (exp111315)". Erowid.org. Dec 10, 2017. erowid.org/exp/111315
A Trip Spent Walking and Police Escorting.
I'd like to share this experience that was quite different from the previous ones. I am usually very reluctant interacting with sober people when I’m tripping and like to stay in close proximity to a safe spot. This time however, I walked far away from my tripping base and did that on a busy hiking trail full of sober hikers. Strangely, these hikers helped me to have one of the most insightful, philosophical trips I ever had.
I am a male in my mid-forties, not married, no kids, am living in Europe and am somewhat, but not overly, experienced with psychedelics (mushrooms, salvia, LSD, 2C-somethings, MDMA, BZP - approx. 50 trips within the last 20 years & smoke weed on a daily basis). Mushrooms have always been my favorite substance. I tripped on very high doses in the past, experienced pure bliss and had to weather-out demanding, believe-shattering journeys. Three years ago, I quit my quite demanding job as an aeronautics engineer in order to study full time at the philosophical faculty.
Set: First week of semester after an exhaustive term break where I worked long hours for two months. A little bit insecure, but relaxed.
Setting: Beautiful little cottage very close to a lake, surrounded by marshland. Mid-September.
Dosage: 3.5 g psilocybe cubensis, mixed strains (McKenna; Mazatapec; PES Hawaii)
My ex-girlfriend and me rented the cottage some months ago. It is almost always booked so we rented it, regardless that the lectures started in this very week. Unfortunately, we split a month or so before the rental, so I ended up being there on my own. It is a rather small and simple bungalow, beautifully located directly at the border of a lake, surrounded by marshland, heated by a wood stove, and the next public transportation is approximately 3 km (2 miles) away. Not having a car, this was somewhat inconvenient for getting there and from university, but great for privacy, especially during the night (for there’s a popular hiking trail right behind the bungalow, only shielded-off by a hedge). There is another cottage of a similar type close by, approximately 70 meters away, both patios are in sight of each other.
On Saturday I moved in and enjoyed the solitude very much as a contrast to the never ending noise and hustle of the city center where I live. I planned to trip on shrooms during my stay already at the time of renting the cottage, and cherished the freedom of just having time to decide when. Some three years ago, I had started cultivating mushrooms and developed my own variation of straw-coffee ground-technique
Some three years ago, I had started cultivating mushrooms and developed my own variation of straw-coffee ground-technique
that is simple and works surprisingly well. It turned into a nice hobby but eventually, I had to stop because there were simply way too much shrooms to be consumed (without fearing to lose one’s marbles) and I did not want to sell it. I thought that I may give it a shot right on arrival but then the people in the neighboring house were having some kind of family gathering, there were people coming and going and greeting each other enthusiastically, which bothered me slightly, so I thought I may wait for after the weekend for tripping.
So I waited till Thursday. The night before, I had a friend over. We had a great night with deep talks, laughter and reflection. She had to go to work early and drove me to the next gas station where I got some orange juice and sweets, just in case I wanted some treats during my journey. After a walking back to the cottage, I smoked a joint and slept for another five hours or so. It was a gorgeous day, end of September, two full days without any commitments - it felt right to trip.
+ 0:00 (12:20) / + 3.5g psilocybe cubensis; + 1 Joint
I weighed out 3.5 g of psilocybe cubensis. I formulated three issues I wanted to explore during the trip (1. decision-making in general; 2. how to deal with my ex-girlfriend; how to deal with the huge expected work-load at university). I chewed the shrooms, washed them down with orange juice and smoked another joint to ease the come-up. I considered it to be a rather low dose since they just laid around for more than two years, one year of it exposed to light. It turned out, the weakened potency was no issue at all.
+ 0:30 (12:50) – First Signs
After some thirty minutes, I felt the first, steadily increasing effects. One of the harshest come-ups in my tripping career so far. I couldn’t get comfortable regardless what I tried, was freezing and sweating at the same time but surprisingly, there was almost no anxiety. At least for this first phase. I laid in my bed and masturbated twice (sorry for being so explicit) and with each orgasm, the beginning trip changed its “shade”, making me believe that the very uncomfortable come-up phase was finally over.
+ 1:00 (13:20) – A Rough Come-Up
But the uneasiness kept increasing up to a point where I had to get out of bed. I just felt down, it felt like there was neither a place nor a destiny for me in this world. I started pacing back and forth through the three rooms of cabin (a good procedure for difficult times on psychedelics) and without realizing it for some time, I got into a strange thought loop. The thing with this though loop was that not only the same sequence of thoughts repeated (well, its a loop) with every pacing-through-the-cabin round, but the emotions increased with every cycle too. They were not necessarily bad, but heavy, serious and a little dark. I eventually called it “panic loop”, not because it was a loop of panic, but I believed that this was the mechanism to how people get anxiety or panic attacks. Having the same emotionally-loaded thoughts over and over again and each cycle starts from a higher level of emotions because the previous one added some. Not the best thought when tripping. However, this pattern kept coming and going during the whole trip. I longed to go outside and sit by the lake, for the weather was great but my neighbors were sitting outside with some friends. I had no wish that they see me in this state, being sweaty, agitated and clearly not in a mentally healthy state. So I kept wandering around inside the cabin until I realized that I needed to leave the house to get out of the loop and decided to walk on the busy trail – if only for a few minutes. It took me another fifteen minutes to get my trousers on because ironically, the plan to escape the loop had become a part of the “panic loop” itself. I kept forgetting that I needed my pants in the middle room and remembered it again every time I reached the adjacent room where my trousers were. This entire pacing phase lasted for about an hour.
+ 2:00 (14:20) – Crossroad to the Psychedelic World
I finally managed to concentrate long enough to grab my pants and get them on. As I sat down to put the shoes on, out of nothing, the walls bulged immensely and got a strange translucent green-red visual echo like having a bad reception on an old color tv. Now I was anxious! I just couldn’t believe how strong the mushroom was coming on and feared that I may be in for a very intensive, maybe too intensive trip with no place to feel comfortable. I pushed that thought away, with it (surprisingly) went the visuals and I stumbled out on the trail. From now on, I may not get the sequence of the events in the exact order, but in general it fits.
While I was walking, the anxiety vanished almost immediately. But it was replaced by self-accusations. I thought how stupid I am to still be doing mushrooms. I asked myself what I want from the mushroom what he has not shown me already and it is on me to act accordingly instead of being lazy and keeping asking him again. I remembered somebody quoting Alan Watts that one shall hang up when having received the call from psychedelics. I thought that I am having a weak psyche and I need my mental strength to keep my things together (strangely, I was thinking this in English) when I’m sober, so using psychedelics is just dumb. Not that I was scared to loose or damage my mind, I just felt way too exhausted for a heavy trip full of wonder and confusion.
Just as I was crossing a small bridge, a colorful completely psychedelic world unfolded in front of my inner eye, ready to take me over. I didn’t hallucinate. It was like a dream-picture was superimposed on (the left side of) my regular “view” or the image that is processed in the brain. It was a Kokopelli-like figure, playing silently some kind of flute while dancing in a bouncing, off-beat psytrance style in a world of dark green and dark red pattern that reminded me remotely of scallop shells (one side a smooth round contour, the other jagged). It felt like a yielding path, to be travelled on one’s own discretion. I honestly and boldly refused the idea to go to the psychedelic world and dissolve and I was very relieved, almost excited that I was offered the chance to decide.
+ 2:10 (14:30) – The Philosophical Walk
And I was right, the psychedelic world retreated and within the next hour or so, I slowly came to terms with my trip. This was the trip to end all trips, at least for me. The last trip and I should humbly experience it and reflect about it while doing so, like somebody who had just had his last day at work before retirement and closes-off the door for good. Thoughts raced through my mind, each one formed new, unexpected connections with another one and with itself. It was not a thinking process, they connected by themselves at an incredible speed. And it seemed each thought was accompanied, yet somehow merged with an adequate emotion. I believed/knew it was my duty to go through all emotions and to bring the thoughts into the world of human knowledge. To formulate, to apply concepts on the connections and dependencies that unfolded themselves. For the sake of just having them thought, for entering them in a morphic field.
Meanwhile, the trail had become quite busy, there was a group of people, let’s say, every 5 minutes. Mostly retired couples or young mothers with their kids, all friendly, caring for each other and in good spirits. Usually, I try to avoid other people as much as I can while tripping. But this time, all the friendly faces and loving vibes and the fact that I had to greet them somehow kept me on the right track, literally. Time stretched unbelievably. I know this trail very well and couldn’t believe that I only covered a bend of maybe 10 m (30 feet) while I went through what felt like a dozen thoughts and mood swings. The trip was still gaining momentum and for a brief moment, I feared that I may be overwhelmed, not be able to move and make a fool of myself. But somehow, I knew that everything was going to be o.k. when I just kept walking and fulfilling my duty. I was still walking on that sunny, busy trail. From time to time I was sucked into the “panic loops”. But I was able to draw myself out of it, thanks to the friendly hikers (thank you!). One of the “panic loops” was actually very inspiring and gave the trip a new turn.
The thought loop revolved around second thoughts about walking away so far away from my safe spot and a slight fear of sliding into a bad trip, asking myself what a bad trip is and what it is caused by. I concluded that it could only be one’s mind or one’s self that makes a trip bad and I was scared to spend the next few hours under the regime of my own self, realizing that this is pretty fucked-up, yet dangerous fear, for we can never escape ourselves (nor should we!). I then asked myself whether it was a good idea to walk so far... and the loop started again, but with more intensity and speed. As soon as I realized that I’m in a loop again, I left it with ease. But the questions, what makes a mind a mind, what makes me “me” stuck and became the main theme of the trip.
the questions, what makes a mind a mind, what makes me “me” stuck and became the main theme of the trip.
I came to the realization that the very core of consciousness is the ability to name things, it is the unit of thoughts (like: “oh there’s a flower!”). And to do that, one needs to do two things: to differentiate and to generalize. To differentiate to set them apart (let’s say: a flower from a stone). To generalize to make assumptions, predictions and statements (“The flowers won’t be there in winter.”). Differentiations can only be done by assigning properties to them (“The flowers are colorful, temperature-sensitive organic beings. Stones are grey, mineral things.”). Generalization is then done along the properties (“Flowers are all things that are colorful, organic beings.”) Assuming, that there’s no natural order or set of properties made for mankind by nature, we also had to define the properties (“Color is if it looks like when you look at a forest in autumn compared to when it’s fog.”). I was puzzled because to define properties, one needs already a concept of things (or how would you know what a forest or fog is). I really thought that’s the big mystery and the godly nature of mankind that we make the decision to structure. To say: this is this color and that is not. And that it is amazing that we all come to pretty much the same set of reality. I remember that a friend of mine told me about the concept of constructivism and I think it merged with the first few pages of Terrence McKenna’s “Foods of the Gods” which I read recently and the classes in political economy that I’m taking. But how all the inputs synthesized almost by themselves and in such a high rate was truly amazing.
+ 3:00 (15:20) – Escorted by Police
During all this time, I was walking on the trail that was getting busier and busier. There was a constant, intense stream of thoughts like the one about constructivism that required all my mental power. I wonder if I looked strange or “tweaking” during this phase. The people I kept greeting (a habit in the rural parts of the country where I live) did not seem to be bothered. I even was joking with a young mother with her one year old and I remember her laughing with me. However, after approximately one hour, I had to go past the water club I’m member of since I’m a child. Up to three months before, I had a leading position in the club, so I knew I had to greet everybody I would see – something I did not exactly feel fit for. There was an event going on, there were people all over the place, all dressed-up in the same sports gear and setting a dragon boat up. I hesitated but decided to walk past quick and planned to pretend to hurry on to a train (the station was now not far away). Strangely, I recognized nobody, so I kept on walking towards the station, bought some water (realizing how hard I’m tripping while trying to make sense of my purse and coins) and walked a few minutes to sit at the border of the lake.
After a while, I desperately needed to pee and headed back to the boat house. It seemed to be empty, none of the guys from before were there and it seemed safe to have a leak. There I met F., a girl that is competing for the Olympics and I chit-chatted a little bit about training sessions and how she manages to train three times a day and work at the same time. It was surprisingly easy to talk even though, I was still tripping pretty hard. It seemed that whenever my brain was not in overdrive pondering existential ontological questions, the visuals took over. There was this red-green echo-shadow superimposed on her but my talk seemed to be pretty coherent (I even told her a week later about my state then and ask, if I acted strangely. She said, I was perfectly normal.). Then another guy I knew, who rents out the dragon boats, arrived and told me that the guys I saw earlier were the police corps of the town where I’m now living (that is some 40 km / 25 miles away). I joked, that they don’t have to pursue me across county borders for my occasional weed consumption, and I’d better leave. But just as I went upstairs the door burst open and I found myself in front of twenty police guys, all having this distinct super healthy, short-hair, eager-alert look.
I thought it would be a good idea to go to the bathroom in order to prevent unnecessary contact but they were all heading to the toilet as well. I found this hilarious standing beside these swat-team-like guys while the toilet bowl morphed, changing color from red to green constantly. I finished, rushed out, shook my head in disbelieve and decided to made my way back home. I knew it will take me an solid hour to walk and I started to feel that I was coming down, anticipating the great afterglow that always comes with shrooms.
+ 4:30 (16:50) – The Way Back
I felt a little bit exhausted, sweaty and pale, there were still thoughts, ideas and questions running through my brain, but at a slower rate and less intensity. I pondered on the way people make decisions and how that is an almost godly act. And that one should decide with joy and a positive curiosity. And that to not decide is a cowardly act. The sun was getting lower and set the surrounding marshland and board of the lake in a soft, autumn light. I felt at one with the world, clear but still under the influence of the mushroom. Some half kilometer ( a third of a mile) short of the cottage I climbed a look-out, smoked a cigarette. The marsh and the lake looked just beautiful in the autumn light, and so was life.
+ 5:30 (17:50) – Coming Home
After having arrived home, I smoked another joint, that brought the mushroomy feeling a little bit back. But an hour later, I felt back to baseline. My ex-girlfriend had texted while I was on my walk, asking if she can come to visit me. I was happy to hear that, picked her up some hours later and we did not talk much about our relationship and just enjoyed the calm setting. I worried a little bit that all the revelations during that trip might be lost, for around midnight it felt somewhat like I had not tripped.
The weeks after
This was actually a baseless fear. For the next few weeks, I was having small déjà-vues on strings of thoughts or ideas that I had during the walk, and then followed these strings again or tried to reconstruct them. I enjoy walking way more now and opt to walk instead of taking public transportation more frequently. For me, it was one of the most philosophical and inspiring trips and I think I got an answer to the main question - the one on decisions. The effect felt was almost double of what I expected considering the dose and age of the mushrooms, but it was just perfect.
From my point of view, the mushroom has indeed an magical component. It gives one what one needs and has a strong and determined way to do that.
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