Have you ever taken LSD? If so what has been your dosage? For the benefit of our non LSD taking friends, let us try and give a small introduction to LSD and its doses. This is what Wiki says “Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), also known as acid, is a psychedelic drug known for its psychological effects. This may include altered awareness of the surroundings, perceptions, and feelings as well as sensations and images that seem real though they are not. It is used mainly as a recreational drug and for spiritual reasons. LSD is typically either swallowed or held under the tongue.”
This comes in the form of a colorless liquid or small stamp size papers dipped in this liquid. Pound for pound, LSD is amongst one of the most potent chemicals known to mankind. Its life changing properties are well documented. The experience of talking LSD is very difficult to explain. It’s like trying to explain what you see, when one looks inside a microscope. Unless you see it for yourself it is hard to fathom such a world. Similarly a psychedelic experience is hard to put it in words. Generally the dose is one drop. Just one tiny drop! And 20 minutes later one starts to feel its affects.
Now to the crime scene. The year is 2012 and I’m in the middle of nowhere in far north Queensland. I have made my way up here with my mates to witness a total solar eclipse. There is a 7 day music festival organized to celebrate this astronomical event. We are a crew of around 15-20 who had made our way up from Melbourne. There had been a major buzz amongst the doofing community regarding thins solar eclipse festival. Our whole crew had been planning for months for this festival. This was a 7 day long festival and all of us were well stocked with our drugs supply. Especially my friend David, Dave in short. Along with his girlfriend Jane, were probably the most excited amongst folks amongst us.
Dave had stocked up considerably , with around 50 pills of Ecstasy , 5 gms of MDMA , 15 gm of Ketamine and a bottle of LSD (around 100 drops).( How I know these exact amounts? I’ll tell you later in the blog). I also had some small amounts for personal consumption that I took with me on the flight from Melbourne (Tell you about that another day).
Fast forward to the festival. The location is a good 2 hour drive from any civilization. The festival is huge with 7 dance floors and around 20,000 people camping up over a few kilometers. Our whole crew found an amazing camping spot with shade and not too far from the main dance floors. The 1st two days were amazing with music, friends, dancing and a lot of drugs. Everyone in that festival was loaded with drugs. This the kind of stuff we dream of! Dave was killing it. He was the go to man with his plethora of drugs at his disposal. The LSD he had was not the strongest, but still quite good. But the killer was the ketamine which he got from India. That shit was sooo potent. Just a tiny bump of it up your nose and the world transform this large dancing trampoline! With a concoction of various other drugs and amazing music, the 1st 2days just flew past.
Day 3 – Today is the big day. The day before the total solar eclipse .All the big acts of zenon records were playing. The music lined up for the sunset stage was off the hook. I remember everyone was very high that morning. There were a few of us who hadn’t slept the previous night. Dave was one of them, and needed more drugs to sustain himself. By lunch time most of us were all pretty exhausted and were resting before the main music starts around 3 pm. It was just me Jane and Dave when the music started on the sunset stage. Dave was already a wreck by then. He had snorted a shit of Ketamine by then. I was not doing too bad as well and was sufficiently high on LSD and some MDMA. I remember the afternoon like it happened yesterday! What did I know that the next few minutes will change my life! As me and Jane were rolling a cigarette, we saw Dave drinking something out of a bottle. And then it just hit us!
OMG HE’s DRANKING THE WHOLE BOTTLLE OF LSD!!!!! Just like that, before we could do anything, the empty bottle of LSD was on the ground. Dave turned around and looked us straight in the eye and said with a loud grunt “Holy shit… what I have done!”
It took us a few minutes to realize what happened. I walked straight up to Dave and asked him what he had done? If he really drank that whole bottle? When he replied “Yes”, that was the most sober I had seen Dev for all the 3 days we had been in the festival. As it dawned on the 3 of us that we need to do something and fast, a bit of panic set in. Some of the other dancers recommended that we give Dave a large dose of Zanex (sleeping pill) and he would be fine. But I knew that no zanex is going to help him now. He had around 90 hits of LSD inside him. Can you even imagine what it will be like? All my high had come down so had Janes. We decided that I will take Dave to the medic tent while Jane goes and gets our other mates. Thanks to some quick thinking from Jane and myself had made the right decision. Dave was pitch sober by now and can’t believe what he has just done .As Dave and myself scamper towards the medic tent I remember him telling me that he will never be the same person again!!
We find the medic tent in a corner of the market area. Inside the medic tent we have two volunteers who look like they have just walked out of a Viking movie. The heavily bearded man and his assistant seem to be busy taking care of a few Japanese girls suffering a sun stroke. As we enter the tent the bearded Viking volunteer as me “How can I help?” To which I replied “Sir. My friend here has drunk a whole bottle of LSD, around 90 hits”. There was pin drop silence for a few seconds. The volunteers couldn’t believe what they had heard. Quickly he told me that the paramedic team was waiting outside and that we should consult them directly. We step out of the tent and find the paramedics next to their ambulance.
I greeted the officers and tell them what had happened. To my surprise, the officer’s dint knows much about LSD or its effects. I made a suggestion to the medicos that maybe sedating Dave will be a good and safe option. That suggestion was not accepted as the medics dint want the sedatives to react with the drugs DAV had already taken. We were advised to sit down in the medic tent and wait it out. I couldn’t believe the medic had just told us to wait it out! Does he even know what he’s talking about? There are 90 drops of LSD in my mate’s body and it is going to explode! But then we had no other choice and made our way back to the tent. I sat on a stool while Dave sat next to me on the ground.
It had been around 20 minutes by then since Dave had taken the hit. The ere silence inside the tent was very unnerving. All of us in the tent knew that all this LSD is going to hit Dave anytime. Dave new it too and it was making him restless. He kept telling me that he had a good life, with work, girlfriend etc. He kept repeating…“ What have I done”!!! In that stressful situation Dave showed great awareness to empty his drug stash and gave it all to me. I quickly put the big stash in the pocket of my camel pack. I tried to reassure Dave that we were at the right place if something were to go wrong. To hang in there and to be brave. Then there was total silence for a few minutes. I knew the moment had come. Dave was breathing much more heavily now.
He shouted “Oakley shades Zenon records…. I understand now” as he stood up. The look in his eyes scared me. I tried to tell him to calm himself, but he pushed me to the side and ran out of the medic tent. By the time I picked myself up to follow him, he was gone. A difficult situation had become dangerous and life threatening. I walked up to the paramedics who were having a chat with some festival security personals. I simply told them that I had done my duty by bringing Dave to the medic tent and due to their irresponsible behavior Dave had escaped into the festival. Dave was a true danger to himself and other in this state. The Security personals straightaway understood the seriousness of this situation and started to send message on their walkie talkies.
As I step out into the market area to search for Dave I bump into Jane and my other crew members. I briefed them about the events inside the medic tent and the fact that Dave was out in the festival somewhere high as fuck! We decided to split up to find him. Luckily we bumped into our Japanese friend “Yuji”. He ran up to us and said “Dave is very high and doing crazy stuff on top of the viewing hill”. A few hundred meters from where we were was a hill, the best vantage point to see the eclipse.
We spot Dave the moment we reach the top of the hill. He was rolling around in the red Australian dirt. Eyes rolled up and frothing from his mouth. His face was pale, almost blue. Making high pith groaning noises he was punching the ground and throwing himself everywhere. We were 6-7 guys who tried to hold him down. But he was throwing us around like an animal. The best word to describe him is probably “manimal”.
Within minutes the paramedics had come with the ambulance. They told us to stand away from Dave who was still convulsing like a man possessed. Along with a few security men they try to administer some sort of relaxant via oxygen pipe. That dint work. Then I could see one of the medics on the phone to some doctor at from Cairns (3 hrs away) for help. It seem as though the doc told them to knock Dave out with intravenous Ketamine. Next thing you know the medic reaches into her bag and administers Dave with a full dose of intravenous Ketamine. They wait for it to show its affects, but to no avail. By this time Dave is free falling through his own consciousness. He muttering names of kids he went to kinder garden with. The medics administer 2 more doses of ketamine to calm him down. You could see the look on their faces on how serious this whole thing was.
Meanwhile one of the security guards taps me on the shoulder and says that some officers wanted to talk to me. I turn around to see two cops. Then I get introduced to them as Dave’s friend. My heart started pumping, as I had all Dave stash of drugs in my camel pack. If the cops ask me to show them my camel pack, I’m going straight to jail! And for a long time!
I guess it was my lucky day. The cops asked me a few questions. They seemed genuinely worried about Dave. They asked me about how he did this to himself and what drug etc. to which I gave them honest answers. I was also a little surprised when they patted me on my back for having taken care of my mate. By this time the paramedics have successfully managed to knock Dave out as he’s gets strapped on the stretcher. The paramedics ask one of us to go with them as they shift him into the ambulance. It was a strange moment. Jane had helped us plan for this festival for all these months, and now she had to leave it mid way. I spoke to her for a few minutes as she cried. I told her that going with Dave on the ambulance was the right thing to do.
There is a dust storm approaching us as Jane gets into that ambulance to leave. The surrounding light and atmosphere were surreal. We could see thousands of people dancing in the sunset stage below us as the ambulance left us. The approaching thunderstorms were making multiple rainbows against the setting sun. It is one of the truly beautiful sights I have seen in my life. The LSD in my system made this sight almost unbelievable with trails and layers. I felt as thou the nature was telling me that Dave was going to be fine. The multiple rainbows were the best thing that happened to me that day. Later I was told that Dave had to be air lifted to cairns as he was not breathing properly.
Dave made it through that night without much problem. He woke up nearly 19 hours later and was properly conscious and aware of what had happened. But this even had changed me. It put life and parties in perspective for me. Thanks to some good decision making between me, Jane and the paramedics were able to avoid a potentially life threatening situation. It was a great example how fun can go wrong.
Dave made a full physical recovery, but same can’t be said regarding his mental aspect. He has shown a downward trend after this incident. Something happened to him that night. His brain got rewired somehow. After almost 10 years after that incident, he finds himself in and out of rehab for Heroine and alcohol. This event changed me too, but I believe for the good. This was my queue to get the fuck out there and make a life! Which I did and got back to India and cleaned up my act.
I hope my experience shed some light on how to deal with an LSD overdose. If you or your friend fined yourself in this situation, then see help. Tell your friends what you have done and Get to a hospital a sap. Don’t try and find a fix for this yourself, because you can’t. These chemicals are so powerful that are way beyond a mortal human beings capabilities. One drop is the dosage. Don’t play with LSD, It is not a joke. If you do, then it will teach you and your friends a good lesson in life. Don’t take this god given sanity for granted, it can vanish in a split second.
Do you think I did the right thing? Would you have done it differently? I would like to hear from you so please leave a comment. Looking forward to interacting with you fellow hippies out there. Until next time…Drop Acid, not bombs!