“Whit dae we hav first?” Ami asks me, her eyes big as saucers awready. People aways
assume Ami is tripping cos she’s got huge fuckin pupils, in fact Ah mind somebody askin her
if she’d been fed acid as a baby, but right now they are bigger than that, way bigger. We
havnae done trips since we were teenagers, but we still smoke a lot ov weed back hame. New
York wis the last time we smoked though an Ah’m gaggin on it, but this is aw jist too much
tae take in. So it surprises me when Ah see my ain hand reach for the blotters ov Acid an
pick them up. Ah’ve seen others like these, back at the Hall of Fame. They were made jist
for Janis by Robert Crumb, who did the Fritz the Cat comics and the Cheap Thrills cover.
Underneath them is a little clear dropper bottle, which is threequarters
fu and has a little label reading Lysergic Acid Diethylamide wrapped around it.
“Holy shit, Ami. Liquid Acid,” Ah whisper, “It’s like proper 60’s Acid, like they dae in
Hair. This is the real fuckin deal; hippy trippy fuckin heaven,”
Amy snatches it out ov the box an scrutinises the label with intense interest. If we were
still teenagers she’d awready have dropped some ontae her tongue.
“Let’s put a drop on wan ov these, try no tae have too much because this shit is really
strong,” Ah say, feeling weird tae be a voice ov caution in the face o so many free drugs.
Has it once crossed mah mind that we should ditch this box, even when Ah wis wondering
how much jail time it wis worth? Has it fuckin nothin. It would be sacrilege tae jist throw
away these drugs. We will tak them ourselves and gie them away rather than sink so low as
tae throw them away.
“Awright, but let’s go and find somewhere nice tae trip before we tak it,” She says, putting
the bottle carefully back into the box.
“Where?” Ah have nae idea where we are, so Ah jist cannae think how tae go about findin
“Ah bet we can find somewhere cool in the forest, find somewhere it might be safe to
camp out and have a wee fire. They’re bound tae be somewhere wi picnic tables and a car
We dinnae find picnic tables and a car park, but we dae find a big forest clearin at the end
ov a dirt track. We dinnae hav tae look far fur firewood so we’ve soon got a wee blaze gaun
in the centre ov the clearin. Above us the stars are bright, although the edges ov the sky are
tinged yellow on maist sides. There’s a lot ov towns and cities aroun here, and that’s their
sodium glare. We take out the Acid bottle and carefully tear off two bits ov blotter paper frae
yin o the sheets. On the bonnet ov the car, while Ami is busy constructing a joint from a very
dry but otherwise well preserved bit ov bud, Ah very carefully put jist yin tiny drop ov the
acid on each ov the wee tabs. It might be pish, dilutit tae water aw maist, but Ah know
there’s enough ov a chance ov it bein quite the opposite that Ah want tae be careful. Ah don’t
really fancy havin a freak out in the middle ov a forest in a totally foreign country. Let’s no
even think about bein on the run frae the polis on top ov that. Ma teenage experimentation
did teach me somethin efter aw. We take the tabs, Ami lights the spliff and Ah open the
bottle ov whisky, and then we sit on the bonnet ov the car tae wait, watchin the fire burn and
the stars shine. The fire fascinates me, fire aways dis. Ah love the way the flames are curlin
aroun the bits ov wood as they burn them, almost like liquid flowin in reverse. Ah move oer
and squat down beside the wee fire tae watch them closer efter a wee while, clutchin mah
bottle ov whiskey but forgettin about it.
Ah hear Ami rumblin aroun in the boot ov the car, and then the radio comes on again, White Rabbit playin softly. A great song for the come up.Ami comes swannin roun the car wi the headdress on her head and mair scarves wrapped aroun her shoulders and airms. She’s found flowers frae somewhere, dried roses and carnations, and wound them through the heid dress. In the light ov the fire the raven black feathers ov the heid dress gleam and steal mah attention frae the flames. Ah’m startin tae get that light, bubbly feelin inside, and there’s an extra layer ov sparkle descendin on the night.
Ah might burst out laughin any minute, in sheer relief tae be alive and intact tae see such a
beautiful night. Ah start singin along wi Grace Slick, fallin down the rabbit hole wi Alice
even as Ah’m comin up. Ami starts spinnin aroun, makin the heid dress flare out and the
scarves trail. The moon, as near as damn it tae fu, peaks o’er the top ov the trees and there’s
silver threads and tassels, and silver bangles on Ami’s wrists; they flash and sparkle like the
stars above us in the moonlight. Ah’m still singin, beltin out the words in a loose free way
Ah havnae achieved in years. The twinklin stars above start to fall like silver snow frae the
sky. We baith start laughin, spinnin aroun under the rain ov silver and trying to catch them
on our tongues like we did wi flakes ov snow as weans. That’s when Ah realise Ah am totally
trippin mah tits off. The apocalyptic flourish at the end ov White Rabbit rings out through
the night an frae mah lungs.
Time changes, it stops flowin in a straight line frae minute to minute and jumps about so
Ah get flashes ov things we are dain out here under the stars. We’re dancin and singing roun
the fire; we’re lyin on our backs on the bonnet ov the Porsche starin at the stars; we’re flopped
inside drinkin and smokin and talkin animatedly about everythin; we’re pokin the dyin flames
ov the fire and watchin the sparks fly up like little fiery imps escapin out intae the world tae
dae mischief; we’re walkin through the trees, layin our hands on the trunks and feelin the life
rush through them; we’re crouchin in the shadows ov the trees watchin the patterns on the
cars paintwork move and swirl and animate while the car breaths gently in the night; we’re
lying on the bonnet again, watchin feathered pink clouds stretch out through a silverin sky as
the sun begins to come up; we’re crashin out inside the car, noddin, as the birds in the trees
begin tae really sing for the mornin.
Ah feel like utter shite when Ah wake up, an when Ah see whit’s left ov the whisky,
(nuthin), the tequila, (also nuthin), and the rum, (a wee bit at the bottom ov the bottle), Ah
realise why. The day is well gone awready, Ah’ve been sleepin sprawled on the very
cramped back seat while Ami has wound back the passenger seat and curled up on that as
best as she can. That’s another reason Ah feel terrible. Aw ma limbs are stiff and aching frae
lying curled up in this position, and ma spine feels twisted out ov shape. Ah have tae crawl
intae the driver seat tae get out and stretch, and this is a painful process made worse by Ami
swearin at me an hittin me as Ah squeeze by her. She’s still maistly sleepin and has nae idea
whit’s goin on. Ah practically fall out ov the car, stumbling into the afternoon light with mah
hands oer mah een. Mah hair is aw oer the place, bleached blond waves that are irritatingly
bright in the sunshine. With aw the bangles Ah seem to have accumulatit, and the scarves,
the waistcoat, ma black skinny fit jeans and high heeled boots Ah know Ah look like a
casualty frae a Glam rock band efter gig pairty, and Ah sure as fuck feel like wan. As if on
cue, the radio comes oan and Motley Crue’s “Girls,Girls,Girls” rudely awakens Ami frae her
slumber. She escapes the car as fast as her sore limbs and hangover will let her, slammin the
door and cursing the car for wakin her up. She’s still wearing the heiddress, and wi the long
grey felt coat she usually wears she looks more hippy than glam. She’s pullin off the casualty
look as good as me though. She staggers oer tae where Ah’m stanin, tryin to light a cigarette
wi a shaky hand while still shieldin mah een frae the sunlight.
A jingle on the radio declares it’s 90’s hour again, and our DJ friend frae yesterday comes
on tae say good afternoon.
“That last song was dedicated to our lady friends out there on the run with Janis’s car. We
haven’t heard from you yet today, so where are you hiding ladies?” If Ah wisnae feelin sae
shite Ah’d be annoyed they’d dedicatit a fuckin Motley Crue song tae us, but aw that is really
concernin me is lightin this fuckin cigarette and tryin to figure out if Ah really Ah’m gaun tae
die wi ma heid bangin like it is.
“Gie me a chance tae have a cigarette, ya bastard,” Ami curses the DJ, scrabblin’ in her
coat pockets for her ain fags and lighter.
“How the fuck are we gaunnae manage tae gaun anywhere the day?” Ah ask her once
Ah’ve finally managed to take a long draw on mah fag. Ah need a coffee badly. Ami packed
a wee travel kettle that will plug intae the lighter socket in the car and Ah have the coffee in
mah rucksack. We threw baith our packs in the boot last night tae make room tae sleep in the
“Coffee first, thinkin efter,” Ami says. Ah’m no gaunnae disagree.
“That wis some fuckin trip,” Ah say shakin mah heid in disbelief. That sets off a roun ov
pains Ah could dae wi out.
“D’ye remember dain that second round ov tabs?” Ami asks me.
“Naw,” Ah reply, not shaking ma heid as Ah’ve learned mah lesson.
“Ah telt ye ye wouldnae, ye’d awready started on the Tequila. Ye widnae let me make
them up either, so fuck knows how strong they were,”
“Did Ah drink maist ov the booze masel?” Ah ask her. She nods at me, and then winces.
“Ah hit the downers frae the box tae get tae sleep. Ye jist kept drinkin,”
“Jist like old times then,” Ah breathe out, trying to quell the queasiness that is startin tae
roil in ma stomach. Coffee, now. Ah mak mah way unsteadily across the dirt to the trunk ov
the car. The DJ is now playin She’s Got Issues by The Offspring. Ah think the DJ is tryin tae
be clever. Ah drag our bags out ov the boot and start making coffee fur us baith. Ami comes
and hovers by the boot, rifling through it again tae see in broad daylight whit is in there. She
nabs the keys to the medicine box frae me and starts searching through it. When Ah come
roun the car wi our coffee she turns tae me with a smile on her face.
“Ah know whit will get us on the road again the day. There’s loads ov uppers in here,”
“So we stock our noses wi speed and drive?” It will work, but Ah’m sceptical cuz Ah
know whit Ah’m like drivin oan speed.
“And coke and Methedrine diet pills,” she tells me, wavin the salt shaker and a wee bottle
ov pills under my nose.
“Ah’ll be lethal behind the wheel on those,” Ah remind her.
“It’ll sharpen ye up in a polis chase,” she tells me and when she sees the look on mah face
she adds, “C’moan, they gie shite like this to their fuckin fighter pilots here in America,”
Quite soon we’re back on the road, with the salt shaker and a bottle ov they diet pills in
the front wi us. We managed to make somethin ov a breakfast out ov what we didnae finish
last night ov the sandwiches Ah bought, then we popped some pills, did a couple ov lines and
hit the road. We had talked last night about headin for Louiseville where Hunter S
Thompson was born, but decided in the end since he couldnae wait tae leave the place it
widnae be as interestin as headin straight on down to New Orleans. There’s aways Nashville
tae take a skek at on the way if we feel like it, although neither ov us is that keen on the
whole country music much.
Ah’m wide awake and chatterin shite. So is Ami, but mah bones are achin and Ah could
mebbe feel sick if mah stomach hadnae just closed right down on me wi the speed pills. It’s
like Ah’m aware ov the feelin, but it’s just sittin in the background bidin it’s time. Efter about
20 minutes on the road the DJ is askin us tae phone him again. He says he’s worried about us
cuz we seem tae have disappeared overnight. Ami digs out her mobile frae the glove box and
hands me the joint she wis smokin. She dials up the radio station and Ah switch off the radio
“Good Afternoon, this is WMJI Rock Radio, can I help you?”
“Your DJ has been naggin us to phone him, so can you put me fru please?” Ami asks in
that fake cockney thing again. Ah force down a giggle.
There’s a couple ov moments ov silence and then the DJ is on the line wi Ami. Ami
disnae even let him say hello.
“Who’s really clever idea of a joke was it to wake me up wif fuckin Motley Crue?” she
barks. Ah cannae hold in the laughter. There is a bark ov laughter at the other end ov the
line too, which is quickly smothered. Ah can bet he’s gettin telt to make sure Ami disnae
“I don’t want to cut you off here, but you really can’t swear on live radio. They’ll make me
if you do it again,” he cautions her, “But it wasn’t me, it was my colleague on the lunch time
slot who dedicated it to you. I take it you’re not a Motley Crue fan?”
“Nah mate. Nikki Sixx asked me for a blow job once, but I told him to go try suck himself
on the stairs,” Ah nearly crash the fuckin car because her answer takes me by surprise. Ah’m
howlin wi laughter and Ah can’t see the road. Ah can hear the DJ chokin too.
“Really, I, em… I really don’t want to have to cut you off,” he manages efter a few
“No big loss to me, mate. You’re the one who wanted to talk to us again,” Ami points out
while Ah’m getting masel back under control.
“OK, but please, no more swearing!” the DJ begs. Ami rolls her eyes at me and Ah shrug
back at her.
“Alright, but I can’t guarantee that I’ll remember,”.