July 12, 2019, is an important date that will go down in every copy of history books handed out to future high school students.
Why? Well, on this date, the first human landed on Jupiter. This person went through absolutely no training and was utterly unprepared.
You’re probably asking, “Who might this mystery person be?”
Long story short, it was me. I went to 14 different dimensions due to fully taking advantage of California’s legalized weed laws.
It was like being strapped to the outside of a space shuttle and watching the person manning the red button press “GO.”
I had no intention of ever being high in San Francisco. I was strictly there for work and a nice, wholesome, family-style retreat.
Since I don’t live in Nashville, I was on a different flight that left a day later. I arrived in California at 11:30 p.m. to meet my best friend, Ryan, in the room we were sharing. Even though I was freaking exhausted, I was super excited to see her. When I got there, I had one of her standard amazing gifts for me laying by my bedside—a huge bouquet of flowers, a nice card and a chocolate croissant (why can’t I get a partner who does this for me?). We stayed up till 1:30 a.m. catching up on all things Hannah and Ryan and called it a night.
The next day, we woke up pretty early and walked down to get breakfast with our other coworkers, Adam and Clay. The whole day ran very smoothly and was way more chill than I expected. I loved being a part of the event and seeing how everything operated.
Regardless, at the end of the day, Ryan and I felt like we needed a break, so we decided to take a walk outside.
First and foremost, let me tell you how TERRIFYING San Francisco is. I envisioned the beautiful Golden Gate Bridge, cute trollies cruising up and down steep hills and 1920s architecture galore.
During our walk, I realized I was in for a real treat (and it wasn’t another chocolate croissant).
Five seconds after walking out of the door of the hotel, a homeless man approached us for money in a kind voice.
“Sorry sir, we don’t have any cash,” Ryan said.
He looked at me and replied, “YOU FUCKING B*TCH! STUCK UP C*NT.”
I was floored he knew me so well without even speaking to me.
All I could do was laugh, because I wasn’t really in the mood for someone throwing a steaming pile of shit at my head.
As soon as we saw a mass of 100 homeless people around one of the corners, we decided to turn around and walk towards the shopping district. Surely it would be better there?
Not long after we changed directions, I heard someone singing loudly. How lovely! A little live music to cheer this place up.
“LALALALALALALA!” Their distant song wafted through the air, alongside the combined smell of trash and human excrements.
The singer got closer, and that’s when I realized it wasn’t a singer at all. It was someone wailing like a zombie from the apocalypse.
“AHHHRHGHHHHHHHHHHHHH,” the voice gurgled like it was contaminated with disease.
I didn’t want to turn around, but I had to. It was a homeless man, who was obviously mentally insane. What was even worse was that we were about to enter a part of the sidewalk that had been boarded off for construction. There was no passing lane. It was single file, man-to-man contact. 4 centimeters behind us, the wailing man continued his song.
“AHHHHHGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!” he screamed a little more adamantly this time.
We stepped aside so he could pass us, but instead of doing this, he walked straight into Macy’s.
Ryan leaned over to me and said, “Wouldn’t it be funny if he was totally normal in Macy’s? Like he just really needed a pair of pants?”
Little did I know about 4 hours later, I’d be right there with him in a full state of psychosis.
When we walked back to the hotel, we saw a huge billboard for weed. We tossed around the idea of trying edibles (I am not a fan of smoking weed at all). Considering we were at this event that lasted all weekend, we didn’t want to drink and be hungover, so we decided this would be our best option, and since it is completely legal, why not?
We walked to the dispensary, which was SO COOL. It was set up like an old timey drug store. It was very “saloon/parlor from the 1900s” style: deep, rich mahogany counters, a bar and lounge you could sit at.
If this was what it was like to be a stoner, count me in.
I picked out some rainbow gummies and Ryan got some blackberry-lemon ones, plus 2 chocolate bars.
Like making spaghetti, we later realized we literally bought enough for the entire city.
The whole process took about 15 minutes, and then we were out of there.
We took an Uber back, since I:
- Almost stepped in a stream of piss on our way there
- Saw a LITERAL pimp (complete in pimp gear)
- Convinced myself that a giant pile of shit in the street was not from a human, but just a very large dog
On our way back, we took one gummy each.
About thirty minutes later, nothing was happening, so we decided to take two more.
Our high started VERY slowly. We laughed a little too hard at an Area 51 meme that said: “When the alien you stole from Area 51 wakes you up at 2:00 a.m. to ask you how to use the microwave.”
I didn’t feel any different, though. This is something that I’d normally find funny.
We went up to our room to change for dinner, where we decided to take 2 more each.
We went down to dinner, feeling 100% fine.
I ordered a pizza and Ryan ordered some dish with artichoke in it (this comes into play later in the story).
While waiting on our food, we still weren’t experiencing any effects of the edibles.
One more couldn’t hurt…
Ryan took another.
As soon as she took hers, she looked directly at our coworker Adam and he said, “WHOA, YOUR EYES JUST CHANGED.”
“Yep, it definitely just hit.”
I was still batting zero, so I asked her if I could take one of hers.
As soon as I put it in my mouth, I could hear it. It made a sizzling sound like one of those bug bombs you put in your house to get rid of spiders. I could feel it fumigating weed into my throat.
I turned to Ryan, laughed and simply said, “I cAn’T fEeL mY HaNdS.”
At first it was funny. People were passing a jug of water around the table, but I had lost full sensation of my hands, so I couldn’t participate, because I knew I’d drop it. Eating my pizza was also tricky, but I managed to use my hands as if they were tiny garden shovels.
During this time, one of our clients decided to check in with our team… and asked for a handshake. Now was possibly the worst time in my life for this, but I hung in there, flung up my arm up to him and somehow managed to slap my hand against his for a firm shake.
Thankfully, I wasn’t out of my mind.
Suddenly, Ryan jolted from the table and said she needed to use the restroom.
“I’ll go check on her in a bit,” I told the team.
About five minutes later, I realized why she’d ran out of the restaurant.
I pushed my chair in and stated that I, too, would be leaving.
As soon as I stood up, I noticed I had also lost sensation of my feet. It felt like I was moonwalking to the door, which happened to be a push door. Since I couldn’t feel my hands, I pressed my whole body against the door to open it.
The restaurant was attached to the lobby of the hotel (THANK GOD), so I proceeded to walk to the elevator. Everything felt and looked like a French painting. I imagined it was fall, there was a bit of a breeze coming in from the doors and I thought about leaves during autumn. As I was walking, I could feel the air gliding off my arms.
I got into the elevator. During my ride up, I told myself, “You are super high, but all you have to do is get to the room. You’re cool. You’re totally fine. Don’t freak out.”
I freaked out.
After swiping my room key 407 times (complete loss of hands), I finally barged inside like an adult toddler.
I felt very funny. It was getting worse. I texted Adam and told him to check on us in one hour.
Ryan came out of the bathroom and spoke with authority.
“Okay, Hannah. We took WAY too much. We are about to get very very high. I read an article on what we should do, so that we know how to handle it. It says we need to lay down and hold hands, so we feel safe.”
“No. I’m being serious.” She also laughed.
“Okay, okay. Let’s hold hands.”
We grasped each others hands tightly and prepared for our ascent into space.
At first, everything moved extremely quickly. I became unreasonably sensitive to noise—ambulances sounded like they were in the room with us. Ryan was bouncing off the walls and moving rapidly around the room. It looked like a scene from the N*SYNC music video for “Drive Myself Crazy.”
Ryan started to fall off the bed in slow-motion. I was convinced if she fell onto the floor, she’d die. But I couldn’t move. Then I imagined the bed extended out to her left side to help her.
I sat up to concentrate myself out of the mess we’d gotten ourselves into, but this is about exactly where my bad trip began.
“Those edibles must have had something else in them. Like meth or heroin. This is not normal. It can’t be,” I worried.
People with high anxiety shouldn’t tweak out on weed for this exact reason.
Ryan agreed, but then disagreed and said, “No, a store can’t do that. They have to be what they say they are on the label.”
I was still unsure.
It is here that I believe I went into a complete state of psychosis, which was terrifying.
Minutes felt like they lasted for days, even years. During this time, I felt my body melting and solidifying. I was convinced I was trapped in this torture for eternity, forever having to suffer like this. That I’d never come out of it and this would be my life until the end of time. I honestly believe I was in another dimension at this point—it was like the secrets of life and death were given to me and I knew EXACTLY how it felt to die. I couldn’t tell what was real anymore.
“Hannah, have you prayed tonight?” Ryan asked.
I lost it.
Ryan and I began to be sewn together—our bodies melting into a liquid and tugging us into one. Then our feet turned into rock, next our legs, next our abdomen. When it got to our heart and throat, I knew this was the end. My heart slowed and pounded in my chest. It was so loud it was ringing my ears. Soon it would turn to rock and I’d be dead. I thought of all the people I loved and how I’d never get to tell them bye.
But then I didn’t die.
Ryan began talking and turned on a movie.
“This is Cameron Diaz. She is real. She’s a real person and we both know her,” I told Ryan.
When the commercials would come on, they’d seem to last for hours. The same commercial played over and over again.
“This movie is Hitched. That is Ashton Kutcher. He is real.”
We began affirming to each other truths that we both knew. Logically, I knew if our realities matched up, we could get out of this.
By the end of the movie, my trip was less savage, but still bad. The credits rolled and I saw them in various colors in a Comic Sans font. They seemed to go on forever. I told myself when they ended, something bad would happened, so I extended them out much longer.
“Hannah. We are in San Francisco. We are at the Rising Stars Mastermind. Our coworkers are Adam and Clay. Our boss is Mike. His wife is Sarah. We are okay.”
“I KNOW!” was all I could muster out at this point.
I began telling myself the same sentence to stay in that dimension, since there were about 19 different ones going on in my head. I’d jump from different places every 30 seconds or so.
“Adam is coming to check on us. They will know what to do. We cannot go to the hospital. We have to stay here.”
I repeated this plan about 1,600 times, so that we knew to stay in the bed and not move until help arrived.
There was a voice that told me that I had to forget everything I just learned about life and death to come back to reality. I could see a picture of my brain and the different levels I’d been to. My brain then started to seal off each layer and I began to rewind my entire night in my head. I was in at least three different dimensions at this point: reality, the rewind and my brain closing off levels. I alternated between all three, but I was desperately trying to hold on to reality.
At this time, Ryan attempted to call Adam. We had made it about 45 minutes. He didn’t answer. She then somehow managed to call our other coworker, who thought we were pulling his leg. He said he could hear me loudly repeating, “WE ARE AT THE RISING STARS MASTERMIND, OUR BOSS IS MIKE, OUR COWORKERS ARE ADAM AND CLAY, WE ARE IN SAN FRANCISCO, WE HAD TOO MANY EDIBLES. I’M COMING DOWN!”
This made him realize something was actually wrong. He called our former coworker and friend, Christin, and asked her what he should do. Christin dutifully advised him and then Adam got Sarah, our boss’s wife to come check on us with him.
Sarah saved me that day.
I’m not even kidding. Today, she could set me on fire and I would just look at her with adoring eyes. I’m not sure if I would’ve ever come back to reality if it wasn’t for her. She was so kind and caring and took care of us like a mother would to two heinous and mentally unstable children.
Ryan opened the door and embraced Sarah, because she knew she was safe now. Then she begged for her job and began crying, feeling guilty that we ruined the mastermind.
I asked Sarah what I was doing when she walked in and she said, “Well… you were rocking back and forth on the bed saying, ‘We are at the Rising Stars Mastermind. We are on planet Earth. Sarah Zeller is here with us.'”
Sarah assured us that no one saw us, because they were in a different room in the restaurant and only she knew about how bad we were.
I needed to stay grounded, so I kept asking Sarah what happened. She always gave me the same answer, which made me know she was real.
The way I saw Sarah when I was high as hell was even stranger. She seemed to glow and her voice was like a song. It was just the pure essence of a mother angel. When she entered the room, she floated in without any feet. The way she moved was by gliding to and fro to check on Ryan and I.
Our nerves had been hijacked by tiny aliens. Ryan began throwing up first. For some terrible reason, I began envisioning the artichoke she had for dinner. It was slimy and green and horrifying. It made me so sick. In my mind, we were just projectile vomiting like that scene in The Exorcist. It was all over the bed, all over our mouths and I was entirely missing the garbage can. In reality, this didn’t happen at all—the trash can got destroyed, but other than that, we did a pretty good job.
Sarah made us sip orange Pedialyte out of a bottle cap and individually gave us freezing cold showers, in which I pleaded with her that I was no longer high.
“I’m sorry, sweetie,” she smiled like an angel, while forcing me to stay in the shower for a minute longer.
Even better, she didn’t allow anyone else to see us in that condition, because we would’ve been humiliated for the rest of our lives.
Hunched over like a naked frog in child’s pose, I begged Sarah for this to be all over. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life to get out of that. I think that night, I fought for my sanity, which is the scariest and most exhausting experience I hope to ever have.
I laid in the floor for what felt like a century and began to drift into sleep. I shut off all the chapters in my brain and I was finally back at the dinner table. At this time, I stopped going into other dimensions, so I knew then that I was okay and could go to sleep.
Sarah tucked both of us in and put my phone beside me in case I needed it.
I woke up a few minutes later and it was only 11:47 p.m.
We’d been high for less than two hours.
The next day, we both rolled over from our beds and said, “BRUH.”
Joking about it has made it a lot easier.
In the end, landing on Jupiter was a learning experience: don’t ever eat 6-8 edibles in one sitting. It also opened my eyes up to death and love. Going through what I went through… there’s no way death could be any worse than that. But I got through almost losing my sanity through the love of my amazing coworkers who didn’t judge us, loved us through it and continue to laugh about it with us. Not once were we ever reprimanded, threatened or condemned for doing something incredibly stupid (which we probably should’ve been). I don’t know too many people that have that kind of grace in their hearts, so I consider myself very lucky.
I think as a defense mechanism, my brain softened most of it as an experience I can now laugh about. I can’t say I’m glad I’ve ever been that high and I will NEVER in my life be that high again, but at the end of the day, it happened, it’s funny and I’m alive.
I can safely say, I don’t ever want to revisit my timeshare on Jupiter.
At least, not without a spacesuit on.