“DO YOU REMEMBER WHEN WE WERE IN AFRICA? by Jenell Kesler
I was out there, with nothing but centrifugal force to keep me in some sort of orbit. Each song was better than the last, each song was like a roller coaster ride, but once I was on board, once the first few notes had drifted in, I wasn’t hearing a thing … the music had become a part of me, floating in and out of me like the air I was breathing, and barley aware of.
It was only ten minutes since I drank the mushrooms I’d soaked in a small bottle of grape juice. I drank the solution on my way home, thinking that I had at least two hours before things kicked in, and even then it would be a slow ascension. But that was before a wave of warm afternoon sun washed across me, taking my breath away. Wooo! I felt like I was seeing the sun for the first time over my left shoulder, it was strobing, vibrating, and then the yellow wave washed over me again leaving my red Jeep, outside and in, looking like it had been beaded with wet M&M’s. There was an electricity flowing through me, the ends of my fingers were gloved with a strange green aura. If I could make a U-turn I could be home in four minutes … I laughed, knowing there was nothing I couldn’t do.
I made it home, stepping out of my Jeep feeling bigger than life, feeling like Cate Blanchett looked as she portrayed a very stoned Bob Dylan. I moved with an awkward grace, turning with every step, considering that I may be moving too fast or too slow, that all of me may not be connected to the rest of me. The correct key was magically in my hand, the door opened and the room was tilting right and left. I switched on the programmed music I had set up earlier just for this adventure, and slipped deep into the leather couch attempting to access what was happening to me. And that’s when the string broke … I was out there on my own, my head realized its last clear though, “ … this is it, this is the trip, this is the adventure. I’m walking out here all alone, no I’m not, everything is out here with me,” and I pulled an Indian blanket over me as the ceiling began to matrix, wondering if the last things I’d thought had been said out loud. Then the tall ornamental grasses blowing in the breeze outside of the picture window were blowing and nodding right though the window … “Was there really a breeze or were they dancing just for me?” I remember looking at myself from above and saying, “Yep! You said that out loud as well.”
My body felt perfect, satisfied, though where it began and I ended I have no idea. Everything was better than it had ever been before, the wood of the table was like a topographical map. I couldn’t decide if I should keep my eyes open or closed … when they were open I was afraid that I was missing something, but when they were closed it was almost too much to stand. Coloured trails swept by me at the speed of sound, yet seemed to take forever to pass, only to have another, and another wash in together and explode on the irises of my eyes. I felt like my body was humming, vibrating, and full of life … yet one look at my cat asleep on my chest assured me that I wasn’t in motion at all. I heard myself think, “What an odd sensation.” I needed my dark shades, the light was zapping my brain, and there wasn’t a straight angle in the room to be found. I knew I was spinning out of control, and it didn’t matter.
Hours passed with the blink of an eye, and then, and then it seemed as if a switch had been thrown. I felt like the gyroscope that was still spinning, yet had jumped off its stand, still in motion, but winding its way down, skipping across the table with no discernible direction. I got myself a long drink, and crawled into bed with the oddest notion that my face was hurting from smiling too much. I let the notion pass, took thirty milligrams of valium, followed by a detailed look at the Captain’s instructions and prepared to land. When I woke I had no recollection of the ride home from the airport … just the comfort of warm sheets, and walls that didn’t move.