The Pharma-Wizard and his Apprentice-Monkey

4 07 2010

The Wizard and his Apprentice first met in a land of smiling beards, weaved magic from Lysergic Acid Diethylamide and danced like epileptic marionettes until the early sun.

But this was just the prologue, for they were to met up again some hot summers day in  Glastonbury Fayre. Amid the disposable domes and £10 gazebos two generations met to compare and contrast their knowledge and experience of the forbidden chemicals, the mysterious pharma’s that can accelerate the human soul to godhead or show the unwary the monochrome devil of the early morning come-down.

The Pharma-Wizard.His eyes having seen many things but still glinting with life, chin grizzled with half-beard but cornered with a knowing smile. He came with his wizard family in a chariot of ancient but sturdy design, built when machines were supposed to last and not designed to fail when the warranty ran out. Dressed in wizard robes and holding a book of knowledge within his polished head, he was an experienced psychonaut.  Nothing could surprise him anymore, he had sampled all the naughty treats from the forbidden tree. He was firmly in control of the situation.

The Apprentice-Monkey was like a big warm Sugar Monster. With the boundless enthusiasm of those who have yet to suffer the indignities of working life he bounced round the guide ropes and discarded sack trolleys of the fields like a hairy young teletubby. A wide beam of sunshine awakened across his face as he cheerily opened up his massive tin of narcotics, a pirates chest of inexplicably illegal goodies .

The Wizard and Apprentice looked at each other and understood what had to be done.

The friendly Spongebob Squarepants tin was held aloft in awe like the Ark of the Covenant. It contained all manner of baggies, pills, powders, rollies and crystals. Potions and spells for a journey into psychonaut Vahalla, the others in the camp stared on with a mixture of amusement and dread of what possibilities were to come.

Like two civilised Englishmen discussing a cup of tea the Wizard and his Apprentice downed the first enchantment, to be followed by a toke of that most benign of oddly illegal narcotics. Pupils dilated, jaws started to grind contentedly and the sun went down behind the hills of Glastonbury quietly muttering to its flaming self “uh-oh

The atmosphere turned to nitrous, the familiar burst of hippy crack inside tents. Like a pair of spaced out clowns the Wizard and his Apprentice inhaled from their flamboyant balloons and danced through an internal sonic landscape before landing back on Earth to a chorus of hysterical laughter underneath the gazebo of the camp.

Again, like genteel Englishmen on the far edge of reality they discussed the trip they had been on. “Well that went well didn’t it?”

“Aww man, it was like I was outside my body looking down and everything was cool!”

“Another balloon?”

Gas bags refilled, little fingers extended as if to sip earl grey from delicate china and “chin chins” all round.

The evening went on , others in the camp tried to keep up with the narco-sorcerers  but they were clearly pulling ahead into a league of their own. “Let’s go to the Stone Circle” someone suggested. Like a child who had just been told they were going to Disneyland the eyes of the Wizard lit up. The Apprentice, face as if he were chewing the largest ball of chewing gum rolled out from the gazebo like a happy teddy bear and screamed a youthful “YAY!”

They danced up to the top of the circle of stones, darting in and out of people and flames, cajoling the less enlightened in the group to follow and to keep up with their MDMA fuelled pace. For some the Stone Circle held the terrifying allure of the deep jungle during the Vietnam War. Amid the mystic ruins and primal flames lay self discovery but also unspeakable horrors. The tribal undercurrents which lay deep within all civilised 21st century humans ran strong amid the Stones, and the Wizard and the Apprentice were leading the charge into this intense dénouement of the first day of Glastonbury.

The view from the top of field was incredible, even without the accelerated consciousness which held the two in its merry dance. Hundreds of lights lay haphazardly stretched out before the group, like a organic city city of laughter, song and dance in the night.

Via magic the imaginary ball of gum in the Apprentice’s mouth came to reality but in his hair. The Apprentice marvelled at what his new found powers had done, curled a few loops of plastic goop from his long flowing locks and proceeded to chew (much to the horror and disgust of everyone else.) Tonight their pharma- kung fu was strong, thought was turning into matter. The magic of the Stone Circles had worked it’s Faustian charms again.

Wax candles were lit and the group gathered round to watch the two adventurers travel through inner space and beyond the infinate. Nearby a man in pink hotpants danced around his friends, singing songs of tits and ass. One felt this was not a normal state of affairs for him, his friends sat back and let him work out whatever he was doing by himself. He knew what he was doing and if he didn’t then it was probably best to stand back and watch.

For hours we sat, chatted about nonsense, sang songs of sexual adventure and personal shame. Strangers were invited into the circle in trusting way that outside the Superfence would be unthinkable. All the time the Wizard gurned like Alfred Steptoe and the Apprentice crafted biftas like a face chewing robot, mechanical paws a blur of skill and intent.

The crowds had thinned by the hour before sunrise; talk of nonsense had turned to deep conversations with the soul, people who hadn’t seen each other for months bonded again to make the world feel right. The group was joined by a young hippy, who was in a band and spoke of his easy going and non-materialistic view of life.

The Wizard and his Apprentice got more munted.

Just as the sun rose over the debris and detritus of the Stone Circle a delightful young couple came up to the group. By then supplies were low, maybe only a day’s worth of narcotics were left.  The couple took a drag on the bifta going round and trust was established.

“We can do a gram for £40 if you want” they offered politely. A gram would be more than enough for everyone left in the group who still felt the need. The early dawn suggested to many that a retreat to blissful slumber for a few hours to recharge for another day’s activities would be wise.

How much would I get for £350” commanded the Wizard throwing caution to the early morning wind. Somewhere beyond the Superfence was the sound of a bank account whimpering.

For that Wednesday night was only the first (but most coherent) chapter in the tale of the  Wizard and the Apprentice. After that semi legible beginning night and day blurred into one long stretch of time, traditional boundaries of hours, daylight and minutes were irrelevant in their brave new world.

They had broken through the Singularity of conventional reality. For breakfast they ate acid. For lunch were mushrooms and for dinnertime the doors of perception were thrown wide open and Charlie the Unicorn thundered out, bellowing rainbow smoke from this nostrils and singing Muse albums in a Russian accent.

By the time the rest of the group had grabbed a few hours kip, been woken by the hot sun around ten o’clock and enjoyed the first spliff or beer of the day our two heroes had shifted into a parallel reality. It was similar to our own but where the hills were a slightly different colour where sweet things tasted salty, where left was right and the moon had an incorrigible smile (while the other one was purple and the home of space nazis.)

Adrift in time and space the Wizard and his Apprentice went their separate ways. Sightings of them were passed round the camp as if they were mythical beasts or confused visitors from another world.

The Wizard was spotted in the Glade later that night, eyes sullen like he had seen through a black hole into a dimension of hell to find Sam Neil standing nude, eyeless and heckling the Wizard (all to the tune of old skool rave music from the early nineties.)

The Apprentice giggled in his tent for eight hours then became transfixed by a simple LED torch which he claimed could unify quantum mechanics with the Theory of Relativity, a feat which only the Large Hadron Collider was thought capable of.

The Wizard was allegedly spotted dancing in and out of the letters in the Glastonbury sign, dressed only in a toga and followed by a group of delirious students from the University of Hull who beat tambourines and blew vulva-horns. For an hour they had proclaimed him the new Messiah, though the Wizard was oblivious to all this, lost in a private world of mind eating imps on motorbikes made of human body parts.

The Apprentice was seen challenging a singing robot in the circus field to a duel of intellects. The game? “Cock,Muff,Bumhole.” The prize? The future domination of the planet Earth The robot won but hugged the grinning teletubby with his metal arms and promised to look after Humanity when his kind were in the ascendant.

The Wizard attempted to find the third door in the “Rabbit Hole”, an adventure playground for adults in the Park Field. To his later regret he found it and was not to re-emerge for another day (although he claimed to have spent over four days in the pocket dimension.) Asked as to what he saw he replied “the horror” and then proceeded to run around  the camp trying to find where he had left his face.

By the weekend the two had uncovered the secrets of universe, slain dragons and fire-breathing metal insects, lost the secrets of the universe and with it any sense of reality or dignity. Despite the gap between them in years they had become brothers in pharma, two warrior monks striding into the unknown with only a tin of enchantments and £350 worth of MDMA to ward off evil.

The Wizard had indeed taught his Apprentice much among the fields of Glastonbury but in return the Apprentice-Monkey had taught the elder sage much too. Despite their baffling illegality the drugs had not only broken down the barriers of perception but also the barriers between generations and souls. Totally free from the constraints of the outside world they had gone on a truly magical journey through mind and space, at the time the rest of us could only look on in wonder (and mild concern) as they rode glittering unicorns into the intoxicating Glasto night but they were better and more rounded human beings because of it.

The Wizard’s wife though, was not best pleased…….




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