Thursday, January 28, 2016


Normally I never remember my dreams, but this entire week they've been particularly vivid. I still only recall bits and pieces, but those bits and pieces are wonderfully strange.

Monday's was the most peculiar and frightening, as it bled into my waking life and transposed itself into my bedroom. The weak light coming through the blinds woke me, and I was aware that I had been dreaming, but, as usual, I couldn't remember the content of the dream. Covers still pulled up under my chin, I glanced at the cabinets that face my bed--only to see a black cat curled on top of them, far to the right. I didn't have my glasses on, so it really looked like a tense black ball of fluff, but I could tell it was a cat because I could see the green glint of its eyes. Worry seized me--I thought that perhaps one of the strays that hang around outside had somehow snuck in. Had we left our door open? A window? I shifted, and it leapt down from the cabinets to the floor--I could even hear the soft thump as it landed. It slinked toward the left side of my bed. I sat up, grabbed my glasses and--there was nothing there. I decided to consider it a good omen for the day, if only to calm my nerves.

Tuesday's dream was more of a classic nightmare. I was in some sort of medieval castle or abbey; I don't think it was a church, as there were no stained glass windows or altar, and it was clear that people had, at one point or another, inhabited the place. The walls were built with thick, yellow-gray blocks of stone, and carved into the columns were these rectangular spiral patterns, which for some reason convinced me that it was located in a Scandinavian country--not that I've ever been to a Scandinavian country in real life. I was originally touring the building while they were setting up for some kind of event. In the vaulted dining hall, there were circular tables covered in cheap white tablecloths, topped with hideous centerpieces--bland plants and thick, low candles. The place settings were brown. It looked almost like a wedding reception, except the color palette was more funereal. But I wasn't there to attend the event. There were a few other tourists besides me, and we straggled into the hall, weaved around the tables on our way to other rooms.

The dream progressed in ways that are lost to me, and later I returned to the building. I wanted to see it again. They weren't going to let me in--I must not have had a ticket or something--but I convinced them to allow me to join a group of schoolchildren who were on a class trip. Soon I struck off on my own, and climbed the stairs to the second floor. There was a bedroom with a stained, moth-eaten mattress on the floor. It was dark, presumably because I wasn't supposed to be in there. I noticed movement in the corner, and then the movement materialized into a hooded figure. Its robe parted slightly at the bottom, and a green snake slid onto the dusty stone floor. It lunged for me, jaws open wide--and then I woke up.

On Wednesday I had two distinct dreams. The first dream was (nerd that I am) about Star Wars. In my galactic saga, however, the First Order--or perhaps it was the Empire, I'm not sure--seemed to have taken some political lessons from the Koch Brothers. First, they'd ditched the lasers for bombs and land mines. It must have been the First Order, because Leia was a general, and my position was something like her assistant. I was constantly at her side, doing whatever menial tasks she needed, as well as serving as witness to important meetings and agreements. At one point I followed her down into this twisting wood building with vaguely Asian architecture to meet a crucial contact, bombs threatening to destroy the structure at any minute. Later--and this is the really Koch Brothers part--the First Order had set up an election to give the appearance of democracy, but the electronic voting machines were so slow that it took an hour to complete the ballot, and most of them ran out batteries before the majority of people could cast their votes at all. After trying and failing to vote, I toured an old office building that was housing refugees, people who had lost their homes in the bombings. There was hardly any room to walk between the crowds and whatever remained of their hastily-gathered belongings. Basically I directed the most depressing Star Wars film ever.

In the second dream, I was at the Beijing airport with my immediate family. We had all our luggage with us--perhaps our flight was delayed? There were lots of people waiting; we were sitting on the carpeted floor for lack of seats. Bored out of my mind, I decided--as is every older sister's right--to embarrass my little sister. I stood, and with great gusto, I began singing the title song from The Sound of Music, flinging my arms wide and spinning around as though I were atop the snowy Alps. Molly was not amused.

And that's all--so far. Have at it, Freudians.

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