Monday, August 11, 2008


By the time the sun was setting outside the dome the five of us had settled into our chairs, swaddled in blankets and warm clothes, gathered in a circle. In a calm whisper the Shaman explained the different forms of medicine she had with her- one containing six plants, the other two. She painted a red stripe down each of our foreheads, "blessed" us with sage smoke and administered a nasty line of powdered tobacco (snuff). Since only one of my nostrils work I already felt lopsided. We closed our eyes and grounded ourselves to mother earth and readied to be carried to father sky. Finally the medicine was poured into a shot glass and each of us tipped a shot back. By this time the dome was completely dark. I closed my eyes and waited.....After two minutes I said "Nothing's happening. I think I need more." I got a couple of giggles. Then nothing but silence.

By the time the "yoga mat" music started my gut was gurgling and I couldn't get comfortable in my chair. I pulled my blanket over my head and breathed from the stomach. The gurgling ceased and I waited for.......something......anything. Don't resist I told myself. Embrace the medicine. Let it flow over you. Welcome the spirit guides. After two hours the gurgling gut started up again and still there was no visions (good or bad). In fact outside of some physical discomfort there was no sense of any kind of "trip" taking place. What was I doing wrong? And now I had to take a crap.
I put on my boots, leaving my felt Sorel inserts in front of my chair, and walked into Slick's house to use the facilities. The cool air felt good. After relieving my system, I laid down on the couch and took inventory. Close eyes- nada. I know I have a high tolerance to drugs. (It takes the dentist a dozen novacaine shots to numb me). But this was crazy. Then I did something I never thought I would do. I got in my car and came home. I figured once the rest of the circle opened their eyes and saw my empty booties they would just think I had ascended in some sort of rapture and go on with their visions.

Once home it was an evening of the shitz and a bout of puking. Two days of fasting didn't seem to keep that nastiness at bay. And still no sense of the medicine's enlightening properties. My first instinct was correct. I'm a social animal. I love to get loaded with friends, laugh, argue, sing, play music, throw darts and knives (no matter how poorly), go home and wake up with a hangover. Sitting silently in the dark waiting for the spirit guides to take me off to Narnia just isn't for me. For now I'll stick to my coffee, beer and pot. I can't wait for a big juicy cheezeburger! OM.


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