Citation: Inexpert_Dreamer. "Enough for Now: An Experience with 1P-LSD (exp108698)". Erowid.org. Jun 14, 2016. erowid.org/exp/108698
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I’m probably not your average tripper in that I only started taking psychedelics in my mid-30s. I don’t smoke (tobacco or cannabis) and barely drink and to most people I appear pretty ‘straight’. As a consequence, despite a longtime interest in music and culture inspired by psychedelics I didn’t really have the opportunity or connections earlier in life to experiment myself. I’m also quite a cautious and rational person who relies upon her brain to make a living, so I would never take something without having reasonable confidence in what it is.
However, since moving to a part of the UK where liberty caps grow abundantly, I’ve dipped my toes into the world of psychedelics, mainly self-picked mushrooms but also mescaline (home-brewed Peruvian Torch), AL-LAD and 1P-LSD. Over a period of nearly four years I’ve tripped around 15-20 times, sometimes solo but mainly with a more experienced friend who was interested in getting back into psychedelics after a break.
I’ve mostly tripped indoors, with occasional wanders around the local neighbourhood or a nearby sculpture park, with a focus on listening to music and appreciating nature. As a very introverted person with moderate levels of social anxiety (although I’ve learned to overcome this to some extent in recent years) I know that a crowded environment such as a festival would be a bad idea for me – I have to feel safe and be around people who I trust.
I tend to take light to moderate doses (producing a trip of around level 2-3). As someone with a very active – to the point of annoyance – inner voice, I find that psychs calm the ego narration and allow me to become more absorbed in the things that I love – music, art and nature. Although I often experience both open- and closed-eye visuals, the main effect is more of a dreamy hypnagogic state where my mind wanders freely through patterns and imaginings, albeit sometimes getting caught up in thought loops.
Interestingly, my trip friend tends to have much more introspective and soul-searching experiences (especially on mushrooms) but I find it hard to think about myself and my life when tripping; it doesn’t seem interesting to me when other things are more absorbing. I’m pretty contented and happy with my lot at the moment, whereas he has lived through some very difficult experiences so the difference may be down to that, or maybe just brain chemistry.
This was the third time that I’d taken 1P-LSD, which I bought online legally some months before the introduction of the UK’s NPS bill and stockpiled as I knew I wouldn’t be able to get any more. On the previous two occasions I’d taken one tab (100 mcg) and felt that this time I was ready to increase the dose.
The setting was my house, on a muggy and wet June day. My boyfriend knew my plans and had gone out for the afternoon so my friend and I had it to ourselves. I’d eaten a good breakfast and also had a light lunch (a slice of toast) before dosing as I knew from previous trips that I would feel better than if I had an empty stomach. I felt positive and looking forward to the experience, even though I also had my usual helping of pre-trip nervousness.
We dosed at 1pm (150 mcg for me; 200 mcg for my more hard-headed friend); I briefly kept the tabs on my tongue to check the taste (although I was confident that it wouldn’t be an NBOMe) and then swallowed. Knowing that it would take a while for the effects to appear, I washed up and then we settled down in the living room and chose some music for the afternoon.
Mushrooms tend to hit me within 15 minutes so the come-up for 1P-LSD (at this dosage, anyway) always seems quite gentle in comparison. I felt some first alerts around 30-45 minutes after dosing and by an hour in the effects were noticeable: mainly chills, slight queasiness, restlessness and muscle tension in my jaw and the backs of my thighs.
I felt some first alerts around 30-45 minutes after dosing and by an hour in the effects were noticeable: mainly chills, slight queasiness, restlessness and muscle tension in my jaw and the backs of my thighs.
Aware that this discomfort would eventually pass, we sat on the sofa under a duvet and listened to music.
Initially we were listening to ‘N’, the most recent album by Nisennenmondai, but as much as we both enjoy their hyper-precise math-rock/motoric rhythms, after a while it started to sound too menacing and insectoid to us, so we switched to ‘House in the Tall Grass’, a more mellow album by Kikagaku Moyo. They definitely know what they’re doing when it comes to dreamy psych-rock, and as our trip was still climbing towards the peak (around 2 hours in) it was hard to tell how much the effects we heard – phasing, slowing down, etc – were on the record or an effect of the trip. Their music also blended really well with the birdsong that we could hear through the living room window.
After that we listened to Miles Davis’s ‘Get Up With It’, mainly for the spacey half-hour track ‘He Loved Him Madly’. I love how much wider and more detailed music sounds when tripping and felt carried along by the energy of the individual musicians’ performances, particularly the life force of Miles’ trumpet.
As well as a general restlessness, throughout the time that we were sitting listening to music, I felt pretty horny, both in a sexual sense and with a more general longing for tactile experiences. Had I been alone or with my boyfriend I would have done something about it but this wasn’t an option with my (strictly platonic) friend around so I just sat with the feeling, which wasn’t so strong as to be uncomfortable anyway.
Wanting to combine other sensory experiences with the music, I ate a satsuma, which was deliciously cold and tangy. However, chewing it felt awkward as I felt very conscious of my teeth being cramped in my mouth (I have a slight overcrowding/small mouth problem anyway and the trip just enhanced this feeling).
Throughout this part of the trip (the peak at around 4-6pm) I was aware of a disconnect between my ‘psychedelic’ self – liberated from inner narration, sexy, absorbed into the energy of the music – and the awkward realities of my actual body, with its muscle tension and flu-like weakness, dry mouth and frequent need to visit the toilet.
I often feel like this when tripping and on this occasion it led me to spend time considering my ambiguity towards the optimism that people often express about psychedelics and their potential to bring people together.
Although I felt a great sense of trust and contentment sharing the afternoon tripping with my friend, sitting there appreciating the music together, I was also aware that most of our sense of connection and ease with each other’s company arose out of our existing friendship and that if I were tripping with strangers whose intentions I didn’t know, I would probably feel a lot more on edge. I’m an idealist who tends to look for the best in everyone but I’m also aware that this makes me vulnerable to manipulation, so I tend to be pretty guarded as a way of protecting myself.
At around 5pm we decided to sit outside for a while; it was drizzling gently but we were happy to get wet in order to enjoy the outdoors. The area behind my house has a lovely view sloping down past a train line into a valley, with plenty of trees which had just come into full leaf, as well as many flowers to appreciate.
I find that visuals on 1P-LSD aren’t as distorted for me as they are on mushrooms (where I experience a lot of symmetrical texture repetition and fractal overlays) but the trees and other surfaces were gently breathing and warping if I looked at them for more than a few seconds.
As it was a misty/drizzly day, the diffused light made colours bright anyway; they didn’t seem significantly brighter during my trip but had a kind of extra quality to them as though the actual hues were made up of a myriad of smaller, differently coloured pixels (similar to old CRT TV screens). In addition to enhanced detail, I also noticed a strobing effect and slight rainbows around the edge of my field of vision.
I was starting to feel hungry but still didn’t fancy chewing anything too solid so we ate some ice-cream and continued sitting outside, alternating periods of quiet appreciation with talking. I find it difficult to have in-depth conversations when tripping as short-term memory loss tends to make it hard to stay coherent for more than several sentences without become distracted. We did, however, discuss how much further I felt I wanted to go with my psychedelic experimentation.
The demands of the real-life world mean that the times when my friend and I can get together and trip are limited to once every three months or so. At the age of 38, I’m also feeling that time is running short as my boyfriend and I would like to start a family in the next year, which will obviously prevent me for tripping for quite some time (possibly a number of years) afterwards.
My friend asked whether I felt as though I wanted to experience an ‘in at the deep end’ high-dose trip before parenthood. I’m unsure: I'm well aware that if I do indeed manage to have a baby, then in a way that will be as much of a strange and overwhelming experience as a strong trip.
Yet in a way, my past few years of experimenting with tripping have made me more ready to face this life change as they have helped me become less fearful about ceding control and submitting to irreversible processes (parenthood being the ultimate ‘you can’t go back’ trip!). I would like to take tripping to a higher level at some point, but in a way I’m not sure that I’m currently asking a question that it might (or might not) answer.
By this point (around 6.30pm) it had started raining more heavily so we went back inside and listened to Björk’s ‘Homogenic’, once again appreciating the detail in the arrangements and Björk’s wonderful voice. The effects were definitely diminishing but still noticeable.
Around 7pm, by boyfriend arrived home and started preparing dinner for us. He had plans to go to a dance music night in a pub about an hour’s drive from us; I thought about whether or not to join him as I was unsure whether I could cope with being around strangers and if I would feel too tired and be a burden on his enjoyment of the evening, but having been reassured that he would look out for me, I decided to go, as I thought I wouldn’t be able to sleep until much later anyway.
After saying goodbye to my friend we travelled to the event; by the time we arrived I still felt slightly spatially disoriented in the unfamiliar venue but was otherwise okay, and felt safe with my boyfriend around. While listening to the music we talked about our plans for a family and agreed that we were ready to start trying very soon. By 1am I was pretty much back to baseline, although it was hard to tell as I was tired.
Although I definitely want to return to tripping at some point in my life – whether that’s a few weeks or a few years down the line – if this does turn out to have been my last trip for a while then I’m more than happy with how it went.
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