I have at least two or three dreams that I’ve had multiple times.
Sometimes I only realize I’ve had the dream before upon having it the most recent time, and when that happens I usually try to write down what I can remember, especially if I wake able to recall an unusual amount of detail, which is rare for me, moreso, it seems, as I get older. Anyway, it happened the other night.
It starts at “work.” Not my real job, but I know it’s where I work. This time it was a grocery store, but I think it’s been an office before.
I find a trail, leading out from some unlikely location, like at the back of Lewis’ magic wardrobe. This time it was through a freezer case in the employees-only back of the store.
The trail leads outside, but, per dreams, it’s not just outside the building I’m in but some altogether different outside. It’s always the same here, a winding trail through patches of high brown grass. Some up and down and so much wind it feels like maybe it’s a high trail, maybe a pass between mountains. But it also threads between little low, and maybe even swampy, patches. In fact in my notes from waking I called a “moor.” Likely because Doyle’s foreboding description of that landscape in Hound of the Baskervilles has always stuck with me.
Eventually I arrive upslope to the backside of an apartment complex which is sitting below and in front of me, like I’m on the edge of a shallow bowl and it’s at the bottom. What I can see is very much like what Jimmy Stewart sees in Hitchcock’s Rear Window, the backs of apartments in neat little squares, windows and sliding doors on balconies. I can see people going about their lives from my vantage, but I don’t think they can see me.
There’s a thinner, less defined trail that goes down into the back courtyard area for the apartments and I take it.
I encounter two guys who are outside on one of the balconies. I remember I’m still a distance away, maybe they’re even on the second floor and I’m on the ground, either way we’re interesting interacting from a distance.
I offer greeting, saying something about having “just moved down the street,” although I know this must sound preposterous as this apartment complex is literally in the middle of nowhere inside my work freezer. Even though I don’t understand it, in my dream my mind strongly knows these guys are “straights,” “squares,” and that they clearly aren’t my type (taken directly from my waking notes).
They both react to my hello with physical doubt, shaking their heads and looking at each other as if to say, “No, you’re not from down the street and we know it.” In the dream I know that they know I’m not from around here and shouldn’t really be here. I’m an interloper in some other place and they’re privy to something I’m not, like how all the knowing extras act in the Truman Show.
I see a third guy, an Indian guy, enter their apartment through the front door, I know he lives across the hall. As he’s crossing the apartment to join them on the balcony he’s removing bandages from his crotch, loudly making a crude joke in accompaniment. I can tell immediately that this guy is the comic relief to this sitcom ensemble, and I like and trust him much more for it. He sees me and asks, snidely, “What the fuck are you doing here?” You can almost hear the canned laugh-track in the background, maybe it was really there. I like him.
All of the sudden an alarm is sounding from everywhere, out of the sky. They hear it and I hear it. They look at me, knowingly again, like I should have a recognition I don’t seem to have, should be conditioned to do something on response to the alarm that I’m not doing. You know when you open the door for a dog to go outside but the dog sits there so you look at it and think something like, “Come on, animal, don’t you know what’s good for you? You should know the drill by now.” They’re giving me that look, waiting for me to realize I’m supposed to be doing something.
Anyway I think I must assume the alarm means I’m to go back, and so I do. Regardless this is the end of the dream, or then end of what I can remember.