Anytime I had ever come across a psychedelic drug it was always spontaneous and by pure luck (or accident), so I can’t say we ever planned for any of these events to happen. It was the late 1990s and I was a Junior in highschool. Mom didn’t care that my baby sister was going out for her first time on a Saturday night because she was going to be with her older and more responsible sibling, me. My girlfriends Gigi and Michelle picked us up in the 4-runner at 9pm. They were both much older than me. I don’t recall even how we met but they liked hanging out with me a lot, said I was the crazy one in the group. Michelle already had two kids and Gigi was almost finished with her second year of college. I expected that tonight we would be headed straight to Main street. Back then all of the kids cruised up and down Main street on the weekends and that is where you would get the party started. I was a little surprised when Michelle drove past Main street and kept heading north down to the river and onto Airport road. The music in the truck was blasting the Steve Miller Bands’ “Serenade” and we sang along……We’re lost in space and the time is our owwwwnnn….. Michelle drives until the road forks and we head out towards the hot wells. We keep driving until the pavement ends and a few minutes later we arrive to our destination. I have never been here before. I have passed it a hundred times in the day but I never would have suspected a mobile trailer was hidden behind all of these dead trees. This trailer looks oddly out-of-place maybe because it’s all alone and positioned too close to the wash. There is a bit of light escaping from a single bulb on the front of the mobile unit. I can’t stop staring and wondering to myself What in the HELL are we doing here?! Michelle turns down the music and Gigi turns her body around from the front passenger seat to ask me and baby sister “You guys wanna fry?” I don’t even think before I reply YES and how much? Gigi says to us “This lady is a Bruja and I am going to go in alone cause she gets all sketched out with new people. I know she’s got hits for 5 bucks, and it’s Bevis and Butthead! Good shit!” We all quickly toss our cash together and Gigi collects it all and shoves it down the front pocket of her Levis, exits the truck and goes inside of the trailer alone.
Why is this taking so long?
While Gigi is inside scoring our hits Michelle tells us a stories about the Bruja. The rumors about her in town are that she is a widow and that she practices black magic. The story went something like this: she was on the back of her husbands motorcycle when they crashed coming down off of Mt. Graham one night. People say that her husband died in her arms long before any help ever arrived. People say that she went crazy after that happened and in town she would tell people she still talked to her dead husband. There was even rumors that the Bruja buried her husband on the property where her trailer now sits. This town is crazy but not half as crazy as the people who start rumors like this. I try and only believe about a third of everything I hear.
Gigi finally comes walking back from the trailer with the slickest smile painted across her face. Everyone is giggling before Gigi even says a word. Before we drive away from the Bruja’s property we all dropped our hits. Michelle proceeds to crank the volume on the music and we are right back to singing along with Steve Miller “Billy Mack is a detective down in Texas” *5 fast hand claps. Tonight is going to be a really good night!!!
I have only dropped acid once before this experience but I am not at all afraid. I just can’t shake this uneasy and uncomfortable feeling that I am having about not knowing when the acid will kick in, and also how baby sister will handle her first trip. We were cruising down Main street when I detect the arrival of my trip. My seat feels so squishy, like a marshmallow and I can feel my body sinking further into it. The lights from all of the cars and on all of the buildings that we are passing seem so much brighter, and more colorful and then all of a sudden I was laughing uncontrollably. The acid has completely taken over and I spurt out loud “Are we in Vegas?!” I completely lose myself in everything that I am feeling, my body is now moving along to another Steve Miller song “You know the night is fallin’ And the music’s callin’ And we’ve got to get down to Swingtown” *air drum solo ensues! I look over and baby sister is also lost in her new feelings. Everyone is smiling and feeling good and everyone is happy.
Time was frozen and the faces of people I knew seemed to be floating in and out of my version of reality. We had stopped somewhere along Main street but only long enough to find out where the party was. We drove in the moonlight with the windows of the truck down, and The Steve Miller band now becoming theme music for this psychedelic adventure. When we stopped I instructed baby sister out of the truck and while linking arms and giggling we made our way to the fisherman’s pier that overlooked Blue Ponds. The full moon was bouncing off the black water and it seemed to be smiling at me, so I smiled and waved back. Baby sister stayed glued to my hip throughout the entire night. My favorite part of our first shared trip was laying on our backs on that pier and watching the stars dance in the night sky for us.
We had completely lost track of time and I know we both forgot about something called a curfew, and how Mom might be waiting up for us when we got home. I was a hero to baby sister that night. You see, on our way home baby sister started having a bad trip. The acid was turning on her and she was afraid. Michelle and Gigi were talking about “some slut” and were throwing around the best curse words but it was the tone of thier speech that frightened baby sister so bad. I never let anyone else on to her bad trip. I only held baby sister in my arms and told her to cup her ears until we made it home. We exited the truck and I held on to baby sister’s hand in leading her into the front door of our home. We were only a few steps into the home when out of nowhere an open hand struck me right across my face and I yell to baby sister “RUN!!!!!!” I took all of the blame. It was 3:15am. This was all my fault. I would take another hit on the face if Mom will just leave baby sister completely out of this, and she did.
Some time had passed and I was nowhere near sober. I am wide awake, face stinging and still tripping balls! I was afraid to leave my room but I had to check on baby sister. I quietly open the door to her bedroom and I find her facing the corner where she is talking to and making strange hand gestures to this very poster of Jim Morison from The Doors! (see below)
I remember asking her first “What in the FUCK are you doing?” and when she turned to look at me we busted up laughing. I managed to talk baby sister back from her bad trip and we stayed up together all night.
No matter how many years have past since that night I always get a really good feeling when I hear anything by The Steve Miller band. I have also have never let my baby sister forget the night that I saved her from trying to climb into her Jim Morison poster.
❤ I still love you Gigi ❤