Cacti - T. pachanoi, Ginger, Phalaris Grass & Cannabis
Citation: Professor Stinky. "Peter and Starburst Heaven: An Experience with Cacti - T. pachanoi, Ginger, Phalaris Grass & Cannabis (exp79238)". Erowid.org. Dec 26, 2009. erowid.org/exp/79238
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||Cacti - T. pachanoi
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Again I was able to acquire a San Pedro from a local big box. The specimen I purchased had two arms and came easily to just a little over two feet I figured. This would be the most I had done yet. I immediately uprooted both arms from the pot and left the dirt in the landscaping on the fringes of the parking lot. Better that something get the use of the minerals in the potting soil. Also since my gal can get a lil unhappy with me when I go for a 'trip' (since she can't), I try to do things out of her eyeline. Out of sight, out of mind. Not that I'm explicity trying to hide things from her, but I also try not to so easily invite drama into my headspace.
Anyways, since I've then specific times that I can prepare such lovely endeavors, I stored the cacti for a few days. Not that that was a big deal. One thing I've learned with San Pedro is never, never ever be in a rush. If I get in a rush at any point with San Pedro, I'll likely not like the results. I found that out to much disappoinment the last time I made a tea with SP (on 4/20 ironically enough). And, frankly, this bit suits my personality quite well. I've been told I like to play with things and I guess it's true. If it's not fun, especially with drugs, what the hell's the point! As I like to take my time and savor the moment completely I broke down my journey into three parts over three evenings over the course of a week. Mind set for every part was mellow and anticipatory.
The first evening I set about the first part of my preparations. I got the cactus out of the closet I had stowed it in and brought it to the sink for a rinse and hence to the table. Since I had so much to use this time and had recently dried some for smoking, I cut off about the top and bottom half inch of the cactus and pitched them. This left me with the two arms flat at each end and sporting fresh material. I then used a razor knife to shallowly v-cut the spines away from the arms. I've tried just nicking out the spines themselves and found it to be a bit to tedious even for me.
Then I used the blunt side of the razor to get just between the skin and the green flesh. Once it's in I drew the blade down each side still using the blunt side. After the skin was loose I inserted the blade just under the lower edge of the green portion (about a 1/4') and cut inwards to just a lil over halfway down and also down the length of the arm on one side at a time. Flippin the arms over I repeated this step. With every cut now I was retrieving long lovely strips of green flesh. I set these aside until both arms were completed. I threw away the white inner cores that I had left. After harvesting all the available flesh I cut each strip down into smaller pieces about two inches or so long for easier storage and maceration. For storage I used a clean plastic half gallon ice cream tub. All the cut flesh fit quite neatly into this. This all took some while, I'd say expect an hour easily per foot of material you might want to use. Though I used considerably more time than that. But I'm not in any rush.
The next evening of prep I got out all the tools and materials required. My small food processor (hardly hold over two cups of liquid), a large (14 cup capacity, ascertained beforehand) stainless steel skillet (NEVER use aluminum for making SP tea, you won't like the results), three lemons, a small jar for liquid storage and consumption, a bowl with water and the chilled cactus flesh. Skillet? Yes, a skillet. It's the only steel pan I currently have and figured it's be adequate for the purpose at hand. I set up the processor and loaded up the first pieces of flesh with a touch of water and hit the on button. I let the processor run for forty five seconds to a minute while occasionally rocking the unit so as to get as good a liqufication as possible.
After doing this I placed the resultant green goo into the skillet. I repeated this process until all flesh pieces were suitably pulverized, around seven times. I then cut the lemons into halves and sqeezed out the juice directly into the cactus goo. I placed the once sqeezed lemons into the bowl of water. I figured I could maximize the amount of citric acid this way. Once all lemons were sqeezed I stirred the mass together and turned the heat on to low. I also currently have an older electric stove, gas works much better for this, but electric will do the job. I've read that bringing the mass up to a slow boil slowly is quite vital and I'd certainly agree. Plus, I'm in no rush.
I left it this way for around twenty minutes stirring every few minutes. At this point I took the lemons out of the water and resqueezed them into the cactus juice as well as added the water they had been sitting in. This filled my skillet up to the inner lip. I moved the temp up to one and again waited twenty minutes with occasional stirring. I repeated this three more times just to be absolutely certain I didn't raise the temp to quickly on a burner I knew could be a little twitchy. A condition that seems endemic of most electric stoves I've ever used or heard of. Once it had come up to four, the whole mass of juice was letting off a reasonable amount of steam without really boiling. I figured if I left it like that it would take a few too many hours to evaporate to an acceptable level for consumption so I turned it up to about 4.5. A few minutes later it started to very slowly and lightly boil. I left it like this for a little over two and a half hours, occasionally stirring and checking the level of the juice.
Once it had reached what I felt to be an acceptable level I strained the juice and mush a little at a time through a bandana I use just for such things back into the ice cream tub. I let this drain and cool for about twenty minutes before picking up the bandana by the corners and first twisting then squeezing the rest of the juice out of the mush. As usual, I was surprised by the small amount of end cactus material, around the same size as a base ball or regular softball. I tried placing this juice into my small jar but found it to be too much. My jar was also only about two cups. So back into the skillet it went to be reduced by about half. I figured this would be the max amount I would be able to drink without too much trouble based on prior experience. I'll tell you right here, the taste can be pretty burly and I was pretty sure this was going to be rather stronger than I had drunk before. After reduction, I poured the juice into my jar where it came to about three quarters full, maybe a cup and a half. Well cool I thought, that much less to drink and it shouldn't be too much more burly. Good thing, that. So into the fridge it went to await my chosen day only a few days away.
The day arrived and I could hardly wait to get the juice out and start drinking. But first I had a little bit of prep to do. I've read widely that San Pedro can make you throw up. Frankly, I hate throwing up, so I do what I can to not throw up. For these purposes I used ginger capsules containing 550 mg each of ginger. I normally use two ginger on a daily basis as I get motion sick incredibly easily and despise the nausea it usually brings. That has a tendency to ruin situations. For the trip at hand I loaded up a little as I had run low a week earlier and so had saved the last seven specifically for today.
T-2hours. Take two ginger caps to begin getting stomach ready for what is sure to be a rough assault on my also normally tender tummy. Inner thoughts of calmness and white light.
T-45 minutes Take two more ginger. Can hardly be too prepared I feel.
The time has arrived. Out comes the jar of juice and a quick shake to mix the settled portions more equally for a consistent burliness. I set this along with a grape flavored drink and a MD Red on the end table and set about loading a bowl consisting of dried San Pedro on the bottom with a phalaris/SP mix over that and covered over with some very nice green bud. I'd recently found that this combo resulted in feeling quite blasted in and of itself. But that's for another time. I set this aside, grabbed the jar and the grape drink and began.
T 0:0 Begin drinking cactus juice. Oh my freakin God!! This shit is way nastier than I remember. I can taste the lemon juice in it too. I don't think that helps, although I'd rather taste lemon than cactus given a preference. This promises to test my resolve and my stomach.
T+:30 I decide to take two more ginger as a safety measure. This stuff is truly one of the worst things I've ever tasted and here I am continuing to drink it as quickly as I dare. I know what waits on the other side. Or at least I've a good idea from my experience with this so far and from prior 'trips' with other substances.
T+:40 Nearing the halfway point in consumption. Think I might be starting to feel something. Wish this tasted better, it'd all be gone by now. But I think that's part of the secret of San Pedro. Think I should try drying some to encapsulate.
T+:45 Somethings starting to happen. I can feel it there but it's got a long way to go. Have a slight increase in heart rate too.
T+1:00 Definitely having onset of the mescaline. Also feeling something that could be counted as nausea, but not really that strong. More like a strong butterfly feeling in the stomach. Still not done drinking. Starting to have second thoughts about drinking the whole thing.
T+1:20 Some minor and mild perceptual changes. Very edges of the vision sort of thing that I might otherwise dismiss. Still with the butterflies but strong enough now to cause me to pare down to minimal clothing. Nothing that can be constrictive of the general gut area. Still liquid left in the jar. Haven't drank anymore in last twenty five minutes.
T+1:45 Having some impaired motor control. My notes are definitely showing this as well. I'm certain that there's perceptual changes occuring. Things are beginning to 'breathe' a little. Stopped drinking nearly an hour ago. Roughly two ounces left in the jar. I think it's about time to take a hit of the Phalaris mix. I hit my pipe and a little sorry I did so as this induces a slight headspin that doesn't initially seem to go well with the oncoming cactus. I think I may have made a mistake here so I unload the phalaris portion of the bowl and repack it with cactus on the bottom and then weed on the upper half.
T+1:55 Three hits later and things are looking mighty good. Any sense of nausea has been completely eliminated and I am positively flying. Good choice on the smoking change I think.
T+2:00 Wow! If there was any doubt before, there certainly isn't now. I'm tripping. I think I'll finish this bowl and go for a walk.
T+2:30 Finished bowl and managed to get properly dressed for a walk. I head out the door before I forget, again, and get 'stuck' indoors. Although my notes simply say, in a fucked up scrawl, walk now (though it looks more like milk uow). Definite loss of fine motor control. Lots and lots of breathing walls and furniture. Starting to catch colors off of things as well. Could be an interesting walk indeed.
T+3:30 Back from my walk. Not nearly as nice as I wanted it to be. My bad knee decided it would throb throughout the experience despite having it wrapped. Further, I'm more of a small town kind of guy and I'm currently in a major metropolitan region. So I'm surrounded by busy roads at most points of the day. The bright lights of passing vehicles have a tendency to sting my eyes under more normal circumstances. Now, they're almost blinding. This forces me to keep my head down more than I would care for. I didn't get to stare at the many fine textures that surround the neighborhood I had chosen. Also, upon leaving, the apartment grounds were strangely busy for a Wednesday night. I already knew from looking in the mirror before I left that my pupils were the size of plates, so interaction with these people I don't know was pretty much off the list. Pity too, as the grounds here are just amazingly beautiful.
Oddly, or perhaps not so oddly for me, I could almost hear the trees and other plants silently telling me to make good and fast my escape from the grounds. To this demand I readily complied. During the walk I had alternate points of being too warm or catching a chill, depending on the Bay breezes and my specific exposure to them. I ended up taking off my jacket and putting it back on several times. Darn houses! Again wishing I was back home with all 2000 of us rather than in a neighborhood that easily exceeds that. At the end of the walk I was able to better see out towards the clouds over the Bay and noticed they seemed alive, glowing from within. Now that I love.
Didn't actually notice alot of movement from the trees. Now that is odd for me. Almost like they know they are captive and not truly free, subject to the whims of mankind. Usually, most trees seem to have their own personality under conditions similar to these, but not so much this time. As I rounded the corner to my own apartment I noticed very good starburst colors from the lights around the complex. Just before ducking in the door I took a moment to look up into the sky and easily saw quite a bit of color in the city stained skies. I noticed I was perspiring a little from the pace of the walk so decided to take a shower.
T+4:00 Great freaking shower! The water felt more amazing than anything I can recall. Practically orgasmically intense! Barely edging out a lovely session many years ago when my ex wife and I had what can only politely be described as Goddess love while on mushrooms. That was a sublime moment in and of itself. Anyway.... While washing my hair I had intense closed eye visuals made up of large fractal patterns that themselves were made up of smaller fractals. Highly rainbow colored. These patterns continued unabated and only slightly less intense after opening my eyes for several more minutes. Somewhere that little sober voice in the mind piped up and enthused 'Man this is fucking incredible!'
I only briefly pondered at the water flowing off my body and down into the drain before I felt like the world was melting. Or maybe it was just me. I was on seriously crazy sensory overload and promptly let myself gently my knees to ride out this wave before trying to stand again. I finish and go to jot down notes while drying. After some time I try my hand at brushing my rather long hair, not quite knowing how that might go since I had so much trouble holding the pen just to jot down six words. I remember being a little concerned I might get overboard in my enthusiasm and do damage. Fortunately that didn't happen. I also resolved to smoke some more weed. But that actually doesn't happen for a while.
T+4:20 I've reached a critical point in this journey. I've turned off the TV since there ain't shit on anyway and commercials genuinely aggravate me. Absolutely everything is melting including my concious self. My notes say 'Austoundingly mind and world meltingly fukt!' It is only at this stage do I wish I had a sitter. I wasn't quite looking for ego dissolution on this trip, but here it seemed to loom. I retained a small thread on the world in no small part thanks to my old cat. He's been around for many of my previous journeys both good and bad and is usually quite adept at knowing when to come to me or when I'm OK. He didn't fail this time either. Just as I thought I might teeter over the edge, I felt him jump up next to me and meow softly.
I looked at him and not surprisingly he seemed to be lit from within. That's not the first time I've seen that. Except I usually don't have to be nearly this warped. He's really an awesome cat/being. That anchored me and allowed me to continue riding on this lovely journey. I feel it only fair to point out that I wasn't so much leery of ego loss, that's just wasn't the point of this session with San Pedro.
T+5:00 Once grounded, I rode wave after wave after wave of euphoria and just feeling amazingly alive. I finally feel kinda back to more real state. I can actually string more than three simple words together coherently and even put them down on paper. The waves continue to come although less intense and with less dissociation and better motor control. Now I'm finally able to take that hit I thought I was going to have earlier. This seems to help me feel just a little more grounded to this reality.
T+5:40 Definitely past the peak. I've also had a couple more hits. I'd say the ride seems a little more like a wavy arc than a definite spike like lsd tends toward in my experiences. Gradual yet quite distinct. While there still seems to plenty of shifting in objects, observed coloration and starbursts have sharply abated. CEV's still vibrant ,though also considerably less in intensity. I've turned the tube back on as a companion sound. Oh the irony of that!
T+6:40 I've munched a little and now I feel mostly just really loaded. There are still moments when I have decent CE fractals with only occasional rainbow coronas with eyes open. At no point thus far from first onset to now have I noticed much in the way of trails. They were mediochre at best. Smoking some more and watching Rammstein videos. this seems a really good combo for this stage of the journey. the former waves seem little more than ripples at this point. Gently and gradually taking me down towards a relative normal state.
T+7:20 Wishing I had more of that sweet green bud to smoke. That alone tells me I'm getting much more towards a baseline feeling. I feel like going back out for a stroll and decide I can handle the discomfort for a few minutes anyway. I check the mirror out of reflex before going back out and no longer see plates for irises but still look really trashed. I leave the apartment and limp around the complex for a few minutes before coming back in knee sore but feeling good otherwise. Sleep may be on its way at much my usual time. That's a good thing to me and precisely as I had planned it. I love it when a plan works out well.
T+9:00 Feeling pretty much baseline and definitly tired. This has easily been one of the best evenings I've spent tripping ever. Definitely the best solo. I'm already looking forward to the next journey, whenever that may be. My only regret was that I didn't have someone joining me this time. Whether a true sitter or someone not quite as messed up to share some of the experiences with. Other than that it was wholly a positive experience.
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