Citation: Zeus. "Death Can Do Better than This: An Experience with H.B. Woodrose (exp54090)". Erowid.org. Jun 24, 2006. erowid.org/exp/54090
Yesterday I woke up, took a piss looked at myself in the mirror and contemplated whether or not I should shave. It’s a process, something that I just didn’t want to do. It began just like any normal day in Wales. Wales is part of the UK. Not England, but part of the UK. Geography is key.
But I woke up today feeling as if it would be the same as any other day in my location. A couple of friends came over, S from Spain and G from France. Usually on a typical day like today we would sit on the couch in my coffin sized living room and play video games, surf the TV maybe put in a movie if we really had time to waste. But I managed to persuade them to come with me to Cardiff.
I really didn’t know why I wanted to go. It was Easter holiday over here, weed is pretty scarce when there is no one here. I just bought a beautiful pipe maybe about a month ago and it was just sitting on the top of my desk. I knew I wanted to put it to use with god knows…just anything to keep my sanity in tact. There is this shop in Cardiff. They usually stock the obscure shit: Various incense holders, tapestries, ‘happy pills’. The guy behind the counter looks like took a few piercing to the face and survived. That type of place. I’ve been here before. It’s great actually. I bought my pipe from here not to mention a lot of equipment for my hookah. Good stuff. I knew they had Salvia Divniorum something that I tried about a year ago but really had no effect (everyone else in the room that night was literally drooling. Disgusting times). But it’s Saturday, I had nothing better to do so I got a small tube of Salvia 6x for 14.99 pounds.
For some reason after I chose the salvia I kept on looking in that same revolving display case. Herbal ecstasy rolled by but I simply wasn’t interested, been there done that. Just as I was about to walk to the counter a little packet of black seeds caught my eye. On the packet it read ‘Hawaiian Baby Woodrose’. Jesus Christ, I just read about this stuff the night before, or maybe it was the night before last. But it was fresh on my mind. I was contemplating on ordering a packet of the seeds over the internet but there it was sitting comfortably between the salvia and a glass pipe. I knew I had to snatch it up.
I was initially interested in Hawaiian Baby Woodrose because I was informed that it was one of the few naturally occurring LSA sources in nature. I also remember Terence McKenna briefly talking about it in one of his lectures. S, Gulliherm and I decided that it would be a great day to see Scary Movie 4 and…well…it would be the best time to try out these newly acquired seeds. I mean, it is Saturday. Sitting in the lobby waiting for the film to start the guy behind the counter told me that it’s best to crush the seeds up, place the remains in my mouth with a large swig of orange juice and swish in the roof of my mouth for some time until the orange juice coats everything. I pulled the seeds out and looked for a way to crush these bad boys.
I tried taking the bottom of my large bottle of orange juice to crush them on the table. No go. I gave them to G, maybe he could figure out something. This is the same guy who just walks into peoples houses and steals coats and jackets, he will definitely find a way. He wrapped the seeds up in a white bag, placed them in a glass ashtray, then placed the ashtray beneath his chair so that the end of his chair leg was directly on top of the seeds which were on top of the ash tray. Two hard surfaces, in theory it should work and after a few hops on his chair it did work. I opened the bag up and the seeds were crushed aside from a few that I could probably just crush up with my teeth. Dropped the seeds in my mouth, downed it with orange juice and I was off.
Sitting in the dark theatre watching Scary Movie 4 I knew something physiologically was different. My arms felt different, the way I moved my head seemed a bit sluggish. The movie was funny, I tried to look at my two friends to try to read their reactions but I couldn’t. I don’t know if it was just simply too dark or my perception was off but I couldn’t tell if they were enjoying the movie or not. Suddenly, I realized that if I didn’t laugh or show some verbal emotion that they would think that I’m going off on the deep end. I belted a few quite laughs here and there just to reinsure them that I was still ‘normal’ and not really feeling anything (although by this time I was). The movie was over, it was time to get up, when I sprung to my feet I noticed a sharp pain on the inside of both my legs, a pain that would linger on and off the entire night.
I also seemed to have misplaced my Salvia tube. This was the last thing I wanted to do, search on the floors of a dirty theatre in near dark for a drug in a black tube. It felt like things hit rock bottom, there we were searching on hands and knees for the tube. It was no where to be found, we have forgotten where we sat so we were literally crawling over two rows of seats combing them for a black plastic tube. I patted my pockets and found the salvia, the search was over. Just another induced paranoia by a substance, it’s happened before so I was not that shaken by it.
When we go out the theatre and in the open air, that’s when I knew something was going on. When I was inside the theatre, the only thing I wanted to do was puke, I felt miserable. It was as if I’ve taken a shot of cyanide and was dealing with the after effects. It was hell on my body. Sort of like the nauseating feeling that I get right before I feel the effect of mushrooms only a lot more gut wrenching. But I was outside now and nearly all those physical effects subsidized. I was walking out in the open completely fucked out of my mind to say the least. The ground felt like silly puddy being stretched out in the air and I was somehow walking on it.
Every footstep sunk my foot deeper in the earth, when I would rise out of that footstep, I would pick up my other foot and place it on the concrete feeling that same disoriented motion. It was like walking on a giant bed cushion suspended from the peaks of two mountains. I’ve been to Cardiff before, I’ve been in Wales for nearly two years but I had no idea where the hell I was. I looked around and it felt alien to me, as if I were in that movie hostel and just arrived in Eastern Europe. The people looked different, they were dressed different, I looked for my two friends and they were off in the distance going another direction, I had to catch up with them.
They told me that we were going to the train station to go home so I just happily agreed. They had a hold on society, they weren’t altered like me. If I could just manage to stick with these guys until I found some since of environmental familiarity I could do just fine. As I was walking with them I saw this corner store. I blindly ran across the street in order to get a lotto ticket. Why? I have no idea. The chances of me feeling like this was one in a million, so maybe I could transcend my existence on a piece of lotto paper and manipulate something. It’s important to first tell you by this point it felt like I had my finger on the button of time, space and probability, I could just flip a switch and win this thing. It wasn’t that hard, people won the lottery all the time. They must have tapped into the same realm that I was in and saw the numbers out of some type of unknown consciousness that existence in some secluded place.
I got two tickets, the minimum I could place on my bank card was 2 pounds. I gave the cashier the card, it didn’t work because it was American. Ok, hold up…I’ll use the cash point I told her. It was right behind me, it couldn’t have been that hard to operate. I place my card in there, the machine told me that it doesn’t accept my type of card. I knew this was going to be hard. I was lost in more ways than one. I looked around the shop for my friends, they were in the back looking at the wines. S must have somehow read my expression for help, she came over. I explained the situation to her, I looked around the convenience store while I was talking, every single person was staring at me, from the cashier to the emu girl and her boyfriend. Something was going on. I stopped talking. Maybe I said too much. Maybe I said too little. G came to my aid and gave me 2 pounds. I had to end this. I got the tickets and walked out of the place.
When we were on the train, the visuals really hit me. I thought I was going blind. Lemonade crystal shards appeared out the corner of my eyes and soon filled the top, left and right of my vision. I call them lemonade crystal shards because that’s the best way I could describe them, if I had the ability to pick them out of my vision, mix them in water with sugar and stir them up, they would undoubtedly taste like country time lemonade. I knew this to be true. I tried closing my eyes to diminish the effects, but every time I would open then they would still be there. I tried listening to my I-pod but that was just a distraction and a nuisance by this time. I was to the point of complete mental confusion. We got off the train, G and S told me they were going to get a kebab and asked if I wanted food. Food? What? Right now? Thoughts were just going through my head. G must have sensed my confusion, he sort of told S or mentioned to her that they should just do it by themselves. G really took the words right of my mouth.
I knew I had to get home. If I was caught on the streets when this substance fully hit me it would be devastating. My mental state was comparable to the calm before the earthquake. I felt the Richter scale twitching up a little bit. It was Time/Space vs. Me. The distance to get to my house factored in with the time it would take me to get there really bugged me out. I had to get somewhere fast. I called up my friend D, a guy always known to have buds and the latest PS2 games at his house. We’ve been wrecked before, he could relate. I muttered something on the phone to him that eventually permitted me to enter his house which was a hop, skip and jump away from the train station. When I walked through the door I was thoroughly articulate for some reason, maybe I wasn’t but it really felt like I was. I walk up to his room and see that it’s in a state of disarray, boxes of food on floor, shit randomly broken and scattered throughout the room, cigarette ash on his Technics, pop-ups splattered all over his computer. I was at home.
There was this other guy there, I forgot his name but he looked like he had nothing better to do than to just sit and watch D play the new Godfather game. I sat back on his bed, buzzed, buzzed buzzed out of my head. D looked over and said I ‘looked pretty wrecked’ or something to that extent. How did these people know where I was? Did I somehow give off this aura that let everyone knew ‘Wait, that guy is completely on another level’. I really tried not to think about it, so I answered with a ‘Yeah, man’. I told him what happened before, about the Hawaiian Baby Woodrose. He was impressed. I also told him about the Salvia that I had sitting in my right pocket. G and S knocked on D’s door, still I believe those guys had some sort of psychic connection that tapped directly into my cerebral. They wanted to know how I was doing, I was alright…really I was. They went back to my house to eat the kebab, watch TV and play videogames as if this were one of those typical days. But I knew it wasn’t.
D, in one of his ingenious moments, decided to roll up a Cognac blunt filled to the brim with London’s finest weed. How could I say no? A blunt is always the rudder in a ship lost at sea. The light tower for the weary sailor. We quickly puffed it, the taste was honey to my lips. Amongst his various porno pop-ups, he threw on a World Industries skate video that just blew my mind. The music was good, the skating was good, I was in the right frame of mind. I’m trying to recollect everything that happened at the house but it seemed like life was just moving at 16 frames per second. Things would happen, I didn’t full understand why they happened but I was happy that they happened. It let me knew that there was an underlying structure to this world, although I couldn’t fully understand it, it was there waiting for me when I got off this mind zinging trip. Suddenly, I remembered G and S. I told them I was going to get them so we can go back to D’s house to smoke. Although D’s house was incredibly comfortable and welcoming I had to tread out in the wilderness of the city. I quickly insured him that I would be back by leaving my salvia on his bed. Off I went.
I opened D’s door and saw outside. Wales in a strange place, even stranger when I’m under the influence of a hallucinogenic compound like Hawaiian Baby Woodrose. The city or maybe it would be better if I say ‘urban structures’ are cleverly mixed with the wilderness. A train bridge might be host to some amazing foliage. Vines may wrap around stone bricks. Walls might be covered in moss. It’s a truly strange place. I closed the door and knew I had to get out there and make it happen.
Now what happened next, I still have no clue. I’m not sure whether it was anxiety or…I don’t know. Maybe it was one of those ‘bad trips’ that I hear about on the internet. However, what happened has gone down in the history of most amazing mental trips I’ve ever had in my life. If I would have done this maybe a few years ago when I was knew to the hallucinogenic scene I would have either committed myself to a institution, tried to commit suicide (yes, it was that strong) or just cower in the corner like an infant. As I was making the trip back to my house, my mind was just filled with archetypes of life and death. A lot of beliefs were created in my head, developed as truths and placed to rest inside my mind. This was the most stressful time of the experience.
I believed that everyone on this earth was just on one hallucinogenic trip and we’ve tripped so hard that we accept this new altered state of mind on ‘earth’ as the norm. I knew this to be true and I somehow was coming down from that trip, I was one of the few people in the world that understood this secret. As I was thinking about this, a sudden pang of terror filled my body. What if this is one big hallucinogenic trip and when I finally ‘come down’ my hallucinogenic body perishes? I die. Wow…wait am I dying right now? Is that why I’m learning this information? It seemed like these were not my thoughts, but the thoughts of some ancient game that has been played since the beginning of time.
As I walked under the train bridge cars seemed to zoom past me. This is when I really had to catch myself. I thought by throwing myself in front of a car, I could end this trip and big done with this imaginary place called ‘earth’ and start living my life on whatever plane of existence I was on. No, I can’t do it…are you serious T? Did you just understand what went through your mind? This is unacceptable. The computer-like reflex of my mind took a hold. But then I thought, maybe I’m thinking about all this because my death is actually imminent.
One of these cars will surely hit me. What am I doing under this damn bridge? It’s a death trap! I just wanted to belt at the top of my lungs ‘Get me out of here!’. But I knew that I was the only person that could take me from that place. The rest of the voyage home was just filled with ‘Death’ ‘Death’ ‘Life’ ‘Death’. I honestly could not think about anything else. If I could make it home, then I would surely end this trip and die at home. The signs were there, all around me. I’ve been thinking about the process of death for nearly two months prior to this trip.
Maybe my thoughts about death were just some type of pre-preparation for my last days on earth. Some type of hyper-lubrication to prepare my soul for its departure from it’s body. Hell, maybe I was dead and I was just walking the earth as a ghost. None of these cars paid attention to me like all those other people throughout the day. If this was death than it sure isn’t different from life. Bummer. What a let down. All these religious wars, killings, holy beliefs for this?!? It’s not even different, give me a break, this is incredibly dull. Death you can do better than that. Ah well, I knew that I needed to make it home dead or alive…or whatever current state I was in. I had the sensation of moving and I could take that sensation to my front door as long as I didn’t stop so that’s what I kept doing.
I opened my door and saw G and S playing Puzzle Kombat on Xbox. It was incredibly peaceful. Maybe I wasn’t dead at all. Things were still operating as they should have always been. These two people are carrying on with their lives in peace, in the comfort of my house. I sat down and just watched the play for a little bit. Things started to make sense again. It was warm inside. The white walls in my living room soothed my mind. I thought to myself ‘Boy was I in a bad state just minutes ago’. It was time for us to make our way back to D’s house, it felt like I just hit the peak of the trip and was on the come down. As we were walking, G and S kept on talking about ‘death and dying’. How did they know! How could they have possibly have known! I was alone inside my head thinking about this, they surely couldn’t have penetrated my thoughts from such a long distance.
I knew these guys had psychic powers, but they were good…really good. It was as if they were just teasing the cohesion in my spirit. Taunting me to just trip the fuck out or remain cool and collective. I went with the later. We got to D’s house in an amazingly short time, the walk wasn’t nearly as bad as I had prepared for. We all sat down, a really awkward but cool ambiance filled the room. We all sat down and just waited without saying much. G watched as D played the Godfather game. S was looking at the other guy in the room at this point, he was completely stoned off his rocker and just mumbling to himself in the corner. And I thought I was in a different world.
We finally managed to organize a small smoke session consisting of my pipe, D’s weed and my Salvia Divinorum that was surprisingly still on D’s bed. He packed a moderate bowl and it went around the room. Everyone had a nice toke. I couldn’t read everyone in the room properly, I could tell that D and I were out of this world. The guy sitting in the chair talking to himself, well…he’s a guy sitting in a chair talking to himself that pretty much sums it up. As far as G and S, they looked stoned, I don’t really know they looked like themselves which could still technically mean that they were stoned. Who knows? I was definitely on the comedown and inside I was jumping up and down with exhilaration, I nearly survived all this…there is still some time but I’ve done alright so far.
D threw on this sketch comedy with two English guys doing absurd stuff. It was funny, strange but definitely funny. We decided to go to this local pub to fulfill the rest of the night, I only felt stoned by now, it was a familiar feeling. The pub was nearly empty aside from a few bonehead Welsh guys. It was one of those, alright lets find a table, sit down, drink this beer and pretend like we know that the hell is going on inside this place.
The night pretty much ended with me in D’s house playing PS2. The other two went home. And I eventually followed their lead after a small bowl of bed and one last round at Godfather. The walk back home was normal.
I have a new found respect for HBW. I’ve taken many ‘herbal pseudo-psychedelics’ and found them to be dull and devoid of content, this was definitely not one of them. Would I take it again? Well not anytime soon that’s for sure and surely anywhere but the comforts of my own home and some nice melodic tunes. This trip was uneasy and rough, like an unexpected uppercut. But I’m still here, and that’s all that matters.
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