Thursday, August 10, 2006

Bad Acid Trips - Part One

Between June 1968 and October 1971 I took 23 LSD trips. I kept a record of each one of them - in my pilots logbook. Sadly, I lost the book in the chaos of the time along with my grey felt hat, a superb long coat that belonged to my step-grandfather, and some great waistcoats that I have been pining for ever since.
Anyway this is the story of Trip no. 22.
I was in Istanbul with my girlfriend, Jan. We had made our way there overland and we had a vague plan to just keep going east and see what happened. I never felt that comfortable in Istanbul. It was the first time that we had come across a culture totally different to our own. As we went eastwards each country sort of prepared us a little more for what was coming next, but Istanbul was a big step up from Bulgaria (then a communist state with machine gun guards on the border posts - a rare thing in those days). We were staying on the roof of a hotel with a bunch of other hippies from here there and everywhere, and to be honest just going out on the street was quite an adventure. I remember Jan getting loads of hassle from blokes pinching her arse and stuff - basically hippy chics just drove some of those guys wild.
Anyway, we were up on the roof, it was dark and we still had to go out and get something to eat. All of sudden I started to feel really trippy. I was a bit scared because I had vowed never to touch acid again as it had been taking me a bit close to the edge. I kind of wondered whether maybe the dope I was smoking was a bit too strong but then I realised what had happened. As I'd made up my last smoke I'd literally licked out my dope tin and obviously in there were some crumbs from my last acid tab. Towards the end of 1971 some of the acid was lethally strong and that's what had got to me.
Before long I was flying. I was looking down across Istanbul and it was like a bloody firework display. And every now and then the chanting from the mosques would kick in which completely sent me off on one. I kind of acted tough in those days so when Jan said, 'let's go get something to eat', I just said 'OK', and off we went. I only got about 100 yards out of the hotel before I decided I couldn't handle it at all - it was like walking through one of those paintings where everybody is just weird. I went back upstairs and hid away in my sleeping bag for several hours until the acid subsided.
After the trip there is always (I'm sure it's not 'always',') a beautiful mellow period as your mind readjusts to normal mode and you kind of feel really clean inside. I remember watching the sunrise across the Bosphorous. Cool, I enjoyed most of being a hippy.

24 comments:

  1. Did you usually have musical accompaniment to your acid trips? Either playing in your head or playing on your stereo? If so, please tell us your favourite acid trip songs.

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  2. Nice trip in both meanings of the word. I never did acid because I am chicken-sh*t and I'm the only person I know that can puke and get sick after smoking pot. But I'm sure it must be an incredible experience.

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  3. Tommy, you really were a hippy, weren't you?

    Goodness.

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  4. Yeah, I'm interested in the 'music in the head' angle. If so, is it always the same tune?

    Drugs is mad, innit.

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  5. Tom, when we had that white acid and walked round Bathpool Park, was there really a train?
    I have oftened wondered.

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  6. mj and Krusty - I was pretty much into all the well known stuff of that era. George Harrison's All Things Must Pass had just come out before we set off for India, and I was truly off on one to find my real self etc. I never had any inner music on my trips - the outside stuff could be spectacular though. The thing about acid is that it goes both ways, so you get good and bad magnified.
    I used to get manic extreme paranoia which I'll describe in my next post in this series.

    Carmy - you can do without it. I am quite anti drugs nowadays from a conciousness point of view, although I would never stop anyone from taking them if that is what they want to do.

    Pammy - sex drugs and rock and roll baby, can't wait to get you in my arms.

    Vicus - yes, there was a train, I think it went past on the right from right to left, but I couldn't be sure about that. Were you with us when we walked through that tunnel.

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  7. Tommy my love, stop teasing me.

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  8. Tom. I have no idea. (I find this a very useful answer to questions, and appropriate in most circumstances).

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  9. I think I'd have been scared of you then.

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  10. Way too cool for a Fairy Liquid mum in the making like me!

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  11. Pammy, I'm not teasing you honest. First I sweet-talk you, then I get you stoned out of your mind and then, well we'll have to wait and see...

    Cherrypie, I was not scary in the slightest - I did have a bit of an image going on that did used to put the straight girls off a little. But then you always used to get the ones who wanted to help you back on to the straight and narrow, and cooked you food and stuff. We would hang around with them until all their money had gone, in the nicest possible way you understand.

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  12. Cherry R. come on, I thought you liked life on the edge.

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  13. Tommy you couldn't get me stoned if you tried, love.

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  14. If anyone here blogs on acid, I'd love to see the results.

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  15. Pammy babe, I'll always love you stoned or not. Culturally we are a million miles apart but are hearts will always be together. I gave up taking drugs when I was 22, apart from the odd glass of organic red wine you understand. Now, if I had met you then I'd have had a crack at turning you on. I used to love smoking dope with sweet young girls.
    TURN ON, TUNE IN, DROP OUT.
    Timothy Leary.
    Sound advice in the 60s I'd say, I'd add HAVE FUN to that too.

    mj, blogging on acid - do you know, I wouldn't take acid nowadays, I value my conciousness, in fact I love it.

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  16. Fuck it, I mean 'our' there not 'are'. What a basic mistake to make - I hate that when I do stuff like that, bollocks.

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  17. Must be the drugs taking effect.

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  18. I'm pretty some blogger I read did a post on acid or mushrooms. An Idiot's Guide To Dreaming can be pretty trippy at times, and the spin off blog from that is seriously off its head. Not that I know about these things. I came of age at the wrong end of the '70's in a drab provincial town and didn't go to university. It was all glue sniffing or getting off your head on typing correction fluid round our way, y'know.

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  19. I know you have not touched drugs since the time of Henry II, Tom, but you may be able to remember the appearance of some of them. What do you think that the hirsute gentleman pictured on Pamela's site is smoking?

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  20. Yes Vicus, I saw that. I can only assume that photograph has somehow been drastically altered using modern computer technology. Gone are the days when we could rely on photo evidence.

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  21. did you have an afghan coat? I always wanted one! Like Carmenzta I was too chicken to try more than a joint and when it caused me to fall asleep through Stairway to Heaven at Knebworth I gave that up!

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  22. Gosh. I come back from me 'ols, and there's a rilly interestin' post from Tom.

    23? I insist you describe them all. I will respond in kind (though I'm in single figures)just as soon as I recover my long-term memory. Which I left on a train in 1974, in the pocket of my afghan coat.

    More to follow, I'm sure.

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  23. OH this is so funny!!! I'm 19 years old in Austin TX and I just started my first Alone trip. I've been looking forward to it for a while and for WHATEVER reason I'm on the stupid computer, I'll put a stop to that soon, but anyway, this was fun to read. Janis's "Ball and Chain" is doing great things for me right now. My dad was with her in San Fransico and they went to school together in Port Arthur. Happy happening! I assure you, not all of the young generation is screwed, as long as I'm around to wake up my friends. : )

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  24. If you want your ex-girlfriend or ex-boyfriend to come crawling back to you on their knees (even if they're dating somebody else now) you got to watch this video
    right away...

    (VIDEO) Have your ex CRAWLING back to you...?

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