Stepping into The Royalty nightclub was like going into downtown Bangkok. It was full of Thai women, pimps, and old ravers left over from the nineties. The music was Asian High-Tec disco house, and slapped me round the face as I entered the bar.
I was always attracted to the lowest bars in town. Some would suggest it was the women I was after but I would disagree. No one really understood that these rooms of pumping, thudding, screeching sounds and the nauseating colours of fluorescent laser lights that shot around the room actually gave me a sense of peace. It was as if my mind was so distracted by the multitude of external stimuli that monkey mind collapsed, and peace broke through.
I turned my head to see who was tapping me on the shoulder. It was the old hippie protester man. Mr Insanity. Seeing as I was drunk, I hugged him like a brother. His eyes were half closed and his hat was slipping off his head. He quickly pulled it on tight covering his ears. I noticed he had a deformed ear which he quickly covered up.
‘How’s the painting going?’ I asked.
‘Beautiful,’ he slurred. ‘Have you found your passion yet?’ he asked while dancing like a fool at the bar. ‘I’m not sure yet. Maybe writing. I think I might like to write,’ I said.
‘Sounds good Chris. Now you need to give up your job and go for it.’ he said.
‘Maybe but I have the rent to pay, bills. It’s never that easy.’
‘Easy sucks. Easy gets married. Easy tows the line and does what he feels others want him to do. Fuck easy.’ He reached into his pocket and pulled out a small bag and started smiling at me.
‘What’s that?’ I enquired although I had my suspicions.
‘They’re mushrooms, man,’ he said with that mischievous glint in his eyes.
‘Are you crazy?’ I said. ‘I don’t do LSD. I failed my PhD in LSD got kicked out of Stan Groff’s school of LSD Psychotherapy for confessing all to a bag of sugar.
‘Calm down Chris. LSD is chemical this is natural. Mushrooms come from Mother Earth. Mother Earth is good. Sometimes we have to go beyond to get within.’
Again his eyes bore into me and through me but no way was I taking drugs again. Beer was my only drug these days. LSD took you to dimensions where scientists had yet to tread. I turned away from him and did my best to ignore him. For a while he went on the dance floor and danced like some possessed hyena. He should be retired by now or somewhere in France with his palette, sketching trees and daffodils.