Citation: letsdoitagain. "Going Behind the Scenes: An Experience with Mushrooms (exp66958)". Erowid.org. Dec 13, 2013. erowid.org/exp/66958
New York City. My first mushroom trip was immensely satisfying and so beautiful that I nearly cried. I still reflect back on it, my favorite day in years.
Three friends and I mashed up dried mushrooms with chocolate ice cream at one friend's East Village apartment. Ten minutes after finishing the ice cream, we walked up to Union Square, headed for the subway station. That's about a ten minute walk, and already the mushrooms had kicked in: our limbs felt heavy and wobbly, and we felt dizzy and giddy. The subway ride up to 86th St seemed endless and nerve-wracking. I was sweating and nervous, worried that other passengers on this crowded, rush-hour train would read my drug-induced state. I was also getting the giggles, and couldn't help laughing. I just looked down and concentrated on the floor, knowing that I was only imagining these dangers, and even if they were true, keeping to myself was the best strategy. Within minutes, the floor seemed like a deep galaxy, and I imagined myself coasting among stars, like the Silver Surfer.
When we emerged from the subway station, we filed out with a dense crowd. It was difficult to navigate the crowd, and I had to coach myself through the simple tasks of walking in a group, keeping an eye on my friends, and climbing stairs.
The sun was beginning to set as we walked along 86th st, headed for the Park. Buildings, cars, and many surfaces seemed phosphorescent and brilliant. Everything shimmered in a golden, peachy glow. I felt as if I were heavily stoned, kind of spaced out, and although I believed my behavior and mannerisms were normal, I noticed that other pedestrians were looking at me strangely. Or were they eying my friends? Or was this just paranoia? I instructed myself to look both ways before crossing the street, and to watch where I was walking. But I was stunned at the splendid view around me, 86th st seemed illuminated.
The Park was a magical land of sounds and sights. Bicycles whizzed by and voices drifted in and out, like waves at the ocean. A group of young distance runners seemed to glow, and their faces looked waxen and soft. Children ran freely and laughed, while their parents tossed them magnificent frisbees or ran with them through the soft grass. It was edenic. Oh, the colors! The drug and the sunset interacted to gild everything in such beautiful, crisp, warm colors. I heard myself repeating, 'Wow...wow...wow...'
My friends and I found a small patch of grass, somewhat isolated, and reclined as the drugs began to peak. I sat up, as grass makes me itch. Again, the sounds of people talking, laughing, and shouting seemed to creep up to me and then dash away, as if all the sounds were recorded in a studio and played back while someone toggled the volume switch. I kept noticing huge shadows crossing past me, and kept looking at the sky, thinking that maybe a commercial jet was crossing before the sun, which is normal. But then I realized that the 'shadows' were really just the grass blowing in the gentle breeze.
We walked around and around the Park. At one point, we sat to look south at the midtown skyline. The sky was purple and the lighted windows of skyscrapers were bright gold. The lights seemed to pulsate, like respiration, and I could almost hear them hum. The lake before us was emerald and blue and I felt a dreamlike perception. I felt immersed in the visual and aural experience and could have sat there for hours. We tried to share our perspectives with each other, but struggled to complete intelligible sentences. However, each of us was able to suggest to the others what was visible. For example, one could say, 'Wow, that building looks so bright,' and the others would then see the building as being bright!
The visual hallucinations were stunning. I saw nothing that didn't exist, but saw many changes within things that did exist. Smoke from a cigarette, a streetlamp behind a tree, glare from a windshield: these quotidian incidents seemed marvelous and mesmerizing. Irregular and unpredictable shapes, such as clusters of leaves on a tree, or gravel scattered over a path, seemed to organize themselves into radial patterns. Walking amongst trees, the large roots above ground seemed serpentine and labyrinthine, and I could only pass through them one step at a time. I almost got creamed by a rollerblader, because it took immense concentration to move out of his path.
My favorite moments were those when we sat on a bench and simply gazed at whatever was in front of us: trees, lamps, other benches, people, anything. I felt such peace, as if everything concluded in a dull roar, or a quiet hum. The world seemed titanic, monolithic, and impossibly complex, yet gentle and peaceful. It also seemed capable of indifferently inflicting irresistible devastation. Yet that potential havoc only added to the profundity of the peace at work. I sensed that trillions of 'things' were happening at any moment as the Earth turned - and they were - and yet despite this commotion, a deafening, profound peace prevailed. As if the world revealed itself, behind the scenes, and said, 'Look at how complex your surroundings are, you can appreciate that fact, but you'll never understand it deeper than that' and then reassured me with the warm hug from a gentle giant.
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