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  • we ate pancakes and drank orange juice and anxiously waited for the drugs to kick in. it was a "holiday" for sarah's boring friends who celebrated smoking weed. april 20th. and we were dropping acid that we got from some high schooler that sarah's brother knew. chris was playing pink floyd and it was terrible, trite. it was a cold day, even for april, and cloudy, so we were forced to stay inside and watch the grey walls fade into strange colors as the drug finally kicked in. i scribbled furiously inside a green five-star notebook that i used for school. sarah threw up.

    her parents' house smelled of cat urine and mildew, and they seemingly purchased their furniture from some bargain bin in the 1980s. the basement was unfinished and the concrete was cold on our feet. her father was handicap from a bout with gangrene a few years back, and her mother stayed in their sham of a marriage out of pure, unadulterated guilt. the guilt hung in the air and even in the midst of my first psychedelic drug experience, i could practically taste the disdain sarah's mother had for her crippled husband. they were one of those couples who hadn't slept in the same bed for years.

    i have no idea at what point i thought it'd be a good idea to trip acid for the first time at a home so filled with obvious misery. sarah called her ex boyfriend and left him a message begging him to come over. i couldn't text my boyfriend because i didn't want him to know i was on acid. he would inject cheap whiskey into his veins every night, but hard drugs? no sir.

    and then sarah's dad came home. we were in the midst of what would turn out to be an 18-hour acid trip and sarah had to help him unload groceries. i sat alone, terrified as her cats rubbed up against my skin. i'm very allergic to cats. i drew pictures in my notebook and wrote about how unhappy i was with my boyfriend. sarah came back downstairs.

    "we have to go get pj from school."
    i stared at her, "we are both on acid."

    sarah, who had puked about three times by this point, was decidedly more high than i was. so i offered to drive. we were in a smaller town outside of wichita, kansas, that i did not know how to navigate. i drove anyway. sarah mumbled the entirety of the drive and puked a couple of times. we made it to the high school and i drove past a row of parked cars, parked on the wrong side of the road. school let out. we waited and waited for sarah's brother to come out. there were high schools in love hugging all around me. "this is exactly the thing you're not supposed to be doing when you're on acid," i told sarah. she threw up again. this was a nightmare. finally, her brother appeared and i pleaded with him to drive. he told me he wouldn't drive my car, and then i asked why there were so many cars parked on the wrong side of the road. "oh, those are just parents waiting to pick up some kids." when i drove past, i did not see a single head in the cars.
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