Citation: Retif. "Picaresque Adventure on Wednesday Afternoon: An Experience with LSD & Alcohol (exp82676)". Erowid.org. Nov 8, 2012. erowid.org/exp/82676
Firstly, some background: I had taken LSD on 4 previous occasions, generally in low doses (my previous highest had been two tabs of blotter acid or roughly 130μg – on other occasions dosage had been half or a quarter of this). I had also taken mushrooms previously, again in small dosages. This was the some total of my experience with psychedelics. My girlfriend had taken 2CB (with MDMA) and otherwise was without hallucinogenic experience, though, like me had also tried amphetamine and cocaine. Both of us are semi-regular users of marijuana and quite frequent drinkers.
On this particular occasion, after a lengthy search for LSD (several thwarted attempts to procure it and the hassles of finding tripping time in our mutually busy schedules had interfered), we finally procured some of a friend of my with whom I had previously taken the drug and who I trusted to provide a quality product. He informed me that the sugar cubes each contained two approximately 65μg hits (he knew the chemist) and as each cube cost only about what one might expect to pay for a single tab, I jumped at the opportunity to finally get some for my girlfriend, who we shall call Claire, and myself. [Erowid Note:
Claims of measured microgram dosages for LSD are usually unsupported. Quantitative measurements for LSD are very difficult to do and cannot be done casually. Without further detailed information about how the measurements were derived, it is reasonable to assume that most statements of microgram dosages of LSD on blotter or in microdots are either misinformed or overstated.]
Given that we had met through a discussion of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas at the bar of our university we had long planned this trip and were keen to do it at the university. At the time the regular semester was over, though summer semester was on. This meant the campus was by no means deserted, but was not particularly busy either. Claire printed out one of our favourite poems – Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s Kubla Khan – in the library whilst I mixed the sugar cubes into two water bottles, giving us each about one and a half cubes. Claire was a little nervous, being aware of LSD’s famed intensity and not really knowing what to expect. Nonetheless, whilst still in the library we drunk down our water and then headed to the bar to wait whilst it kicked in (and for outside to cool down a little as it was about 38 degrees Celsius at the time we dropped).
In the bar we purchased a jug of beer and started playing pool. Half an hour after we dropped Claire said she felt colours sharpening and the sensation of everything growing lighter. I myself did not yet feel anything I could definitively attribute to the LSD. About 45 minutes in it made its presence felt, but was still not hugely apparent and, but for the fact that I knew I’d only had two beers, I could have almost attributed the effects to drunkenness. It was right on the hour that the first definitive hallucinatory effects manifested, but this still consisted only of subtle warping of the vision at the periphery and a vague sensation of movement, as well as a more acute version of the sensation Claire had reported earlier.
It was as we got a second beer that the effects became more pronounced and floaters – like those experienced when pressure is applied to the eye – started appearing in my vision. At this point we elected to relocate to a bench overlooking the lakes and we sat here for a while. Aside from the visual distortion, which was still moderate at most, we felt our thought patterns shifting and making more connections than usual and wandering more widely. Both of us found ourselves appreciating the beauty of the lakes (which we walked by every day of semester, coming up from the bus stop) more than usual and generally more perceptive of the smaller details around us. The effect was almost paradoxical – whilst everything had begun to gain a certain surreal edge it seemed simultaneously at everything had become almost hyper-real, that every detail was significant.
We began walking at this point with the intention of heading up to the Great Court, which is surrounded my magnificent sandstone buildings decorated with gargoyles. Once here we did a lap and at one point stood looking up at the gargoyles and laughing, uncaring of the opinions of clearly bewildered passers-by. In general interactions with other, non-trippers, had become somewhat troublesome and a cause for laughter. Generally we were keeping to ourselves and not paying a great deal of attention to those around us.
By the time we had completed our lap we were the best part of two hours into the trip and I had begun to feel that the effects were not nearly as intense as I had desired, wondering if maybe the acid had lost its potency whilst I’d been storing it prior to our trip. Claire thought we should give it a little more time before taking more, not wanting to fall into the classic drug-users trap of taking more when the substance does not seem to be working only to find it coming on very strong a little later. We sat and smoked a few cigarettes and once two hours arrived we both agreed to take more. We bought more bottled water (not wanting to expose the acid to the chlorine in tap water) and measured the remaining acid (which was in the form of a crumbled cube) into each with a teaspoon. Drinking this we then resumed walking and headed back in the direction of the bar.
It wasn’t long after this that the effects of the first drop really kicked in (much sooner than could be attributed to the second drop). As we were sitting at the bar once more, drinking more beers, very clear and unmistakable patterns – similar to paisley – began appearing whenever I looked at something for more than a few seconds. Pretty soon I didn’t even need to do that and they were everywhere. Things began to ripple and distort in a very pronounced fashion. Looking into Claire’s blue eyes they seemed like lakes, their surfaces rippling. Deciding it was time to make an exit so as not to disturb the other bar patrons we once again left in the direction of the lakes, stumbling slightly as we exited. Walking past the bar I got a strong sensation all of a sudden that the patrons there were talking raucously in Russian, but when I paid close attention they were speaking English, as I logically knew they must be.
We crossed the playing fields near the lake and walked into the small, forested gully I had discovered a few weeks earlier, which was completely shrouded from outside view. Walking along the winding path running alongside the gully we felt like we were deep in a forest and the sounds of the bamboo creaking made it seem almost as if the forest was speaking to us. Looking out across the ferns that carpeted the floor of the gully I could suddenly see hundreds of eyes peering at me, though not in a menacing way. Everything in here was profoundly beautiful, friendly at it felt very safe. We made our way along the path which forked twice and emerged onto a grassy lawn on the side of the river where there is a statue of Saint Vladimir, a prince of Kiev who first converted the Russians to Christianity over a millennium ago. The statue is stern-faced, bearded and is holding up the Orthodox cross and the Bible in his outstretched arms, as if for the masses he is converting. As we looked at him he seemed to tremble with a mighty energy and soon was wreathed in a fiery glow. We stood there in awe for a time and then, after maybe fifteen minutes, headed back through the gully, walking for what seemed ages, but was probably only five minutes. We once again stopped at the bamboo grove, which we felt had some sort of spiritual power and seemed almost conscious.
Emerging back on the playing fields we walked over the marquee that mysteriously stood on the far side. Seeing a gap in the side we slipped under the flap and were inside. It was set up like a cocktail bar, but was devoid of a single person. On one table rested a single champagne glass, which Claire dubbed ‘our goblet’ and took with her. A strong wind was blowing and the entire marquee seemed to tremble. Soon not just the walls and the roof were shaking, but the ground too, as if it were liquid and we were miraculously walking on it. Looking along the length of the marquee we saw several machines of some description located at the far end and Claire insisted on walking towards them, but I could see them melting away into black slime, which became the fate of the entire far end of the tent and I suggested we leave.
We reached the back of the theatre, where the names of every play are spray-painted on the plain brick wall, graffiti-style. In the bottom of the overhanging deck above I could see a crack and as I watched it, the area around it started to darken and the crack spread and began dripping the black slime of before. Judging that the building had a cancer we once again moved on, though through morbid curiosity I continually looked back at the wall and the crack.
Soon we were walking back through the main area of campus, which was strewn with fallen jacaranda petals. These seemed to glow brilliant purples and carpeted everything. Pretty soon we’d reached the bar again and went in for another drink and sat on the couches at the far end. The couches were like jelly and the circles on the fabric expanded, contracted, blinked and occasionally burst like bubbles. I soon discovered the bar had been closed whilst we sat there and we exited, electing to take a ferry to Southbank to ride the Ferris wheel there. The boat ride was superb and the buildings and trees on the shoreline danced and everything seemed to have a beautiful, serene aura as the sun set. By now it was about three and a half hours since we had dropped the first time and I judged the second dose was now starting to kick in as the first maintained its plateau. This amplified the experience immensely and the ride up river, with the strong, cool breeze and the setting sun was absolutely perfect.
Soon we reached Southbank and felt like we had arrived in some sort of carnival. Though it was a Wednesday night the whole city seemed to be alive and thriving. Looking across the river to the CBD we judged that some buildings were ‘evil’ and others ‘friendly’. We strolled through the rainforest garden walkways and stopped briefly to smoke another cigarette before going on the wheel. Strangely we found staring into the mechanical workings of the wheel itself more interesting than the spectacular view of the city it afforded at its highest point. After a few rotations we became confused and wondered whether we had to disembark ourselves or it would stop. It finally stopped and we walked across the bridge to the CBD, stopping to watch traffic pass by below us on the Riverside Expressway, talking about Hunter S Thompson, Ken Kesey and Timothy Leary.
Finally we went to catch a bus back to my house, pausing once again to smoke in King George Square where we looked at City Hall and the giant Christmas Tree. At this point the second dose was peaking, though the peak was far less vivid than that of the first. Whilst we were waiting at the bus station a little while later the black specks in the floor tiles began to grow and spill out and ooze up, finally transforming into thousands upon thousands of tiny bristling spikes which I felt might penetrate the sole of my shoe if I did not get my feet off the ground. Claire experienced the exact same sensation and lifted up her feet too. Soon our bus arrived – decked out in tinsel for Christmas, which seemed pleasing to us – and we headed back to mine where we watched Fear and Loathing (after a rather poor go at making toasted sandwiches).
At last we had sex. Unlike with just about every other drug I’ve taken, the effect of the LSD was not to make the sex more purely physical but less – it became a more romantic thing, slow, gentle and profoundly fulfilling.
Throughout the trip I did not feel the effects of the beer we drank at all (though that isn’t particularly unusual as I typically drink a lot and have a fairly high tolerance for alcohol). I did find that smoking cigarettes seemed to briefly invigorate the acid experience, but the effect was very short-lived.
Overall it was a profoundly enjoyable experience and even the unsavoury things I saw seemed less horrifying and more morbidly fascinating in a cerebral sense. As yet I have not come remotely close to having a ‘bad trip’ and rate LSD highest amongst all the drugs I have sampled. I do not think it is a thing to be feared, as so many do. Claire said she enjoyed her first experience immensely and is keen to do it again, possibly at a considerably higher dose next time.
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