Well it was, until I found myself brushing my teeth in the dark with hand cream. That’s when I suddenly realised I was over it.
I discovered that I love making fires. Maybe because I realised I had to do something while the rest of the crew were cooking. It’s been more than 500,000 years since we organised evenings that way: those who cook and those who make the fire. First you have to find an undercover place, far enough from the trees, but not too far from the camp. Then you have to pick up wood. The best solution is to be fastidious so as to cover a large area and to light the fire as late as possible. Hugo and Paul were good partners for that, Gabriel always wanted to put gas in the fire because he found the process too slow. There are various techniques to light a fire but the cheapest and most effective one (reminder: we are still in Switzerland) is that of the wooden tepee around a paper ball. Chats around the fire became more and more philosophical each night, and we’re lucky our trip didn’t last longer because after 8pm, the topic of every conversation was ‘’the real meaning of life’’. With Hugo as our leader, we could have ended up creating a sect. Our ideal would have been the rejection of technology and the return to a nomadic way of life.
One of the last nights of the tour, I walked to the fringe of a forest and sat against a tree to contemplate the stars in the sky. After an hour of listening to the silence, at some moments interspersed by the stream’s echo that the wind brought back to my ears, a strange feeling of calm mixed with an extreme sensitivity invaded me and I couldn’t reject it. There was no longer a sky, trees, stars, and a stream, but only a unique force I was a part of. The grass was growing, the stars were alive, and I was a tree. For a few minutes I wasn’t able to move and could barely breathe.
When I snapped out of it I went back to my tent as fast as possible, suspecting that someone had put drugs in my green tea that evening. These few minutes under the influence of natural DMT scared me a bit, but I would be willing to go camping in the mountains again just to live that moment once more. I’ve watched many videos of levitating monks on YouTube since, and I think I understand how it works. -Sylvain