I’ve had a lot of whacky dreams lately.
Nothing particularly awe-inspiring or epiphanic, mind you. Just a big mish-mash of strange, loosely connected but extremely realistic and visually intense viewscapes and scenarios. Though there is much that is still unknown about the neurophysiologic mechanisms that drive rapid eye movement (REM) sleep and dream content, there appears to be a deep connection between dreams and mood. I think it’s safe to say that I’ve been on a bit of roller coaster ride lately: I’ve decided to make some major changes at work (which explains my recent lapse in writing; sorry!), and though these changes are definitely for the better, executing the change can often be a daunting challenge. It’s all good, I want to reassure you! But I think the ultra-vivid quality of my recent dreams probably reflects my inner adaptations to the upcoming work restructuring I’ve decided it’s best to undertake.
Yesterday I awakened at 5 a.m. disappointed that I didn’t get to taste the margarita I had just made for myself in some bar in Cabo San Lucas.
Here’s this morning’s little adventure.
I’m in my car. It’s a cool, sunny late morning. I’m hungry and looking for a place to eat an early lunch. As I drive slowly and silently down this flat, straight suburban road, nondescript shopping malls loom and pass by on my left. I pass an Olive Garden. Then a Macaroni Grill. Then a whole bank of other large, corporate restaurants. I’m just not in the mood for any of that today. I’ve eaten at all of these places before. This morning I need something different, something local, something smaller.
At the end of this row of restaurants there is a place that seems to fit the bill. Set back a fair ways off the road sits a short, squat, long chrome silver building, designed to resemble the dining car of a passenger train. I don’t see (or remember) the name of the establishment, but it’s pretty clear it’s a family-owned, greasy-spoon kinda place. I’m looking for something different, to be sure, but I wonder if there is anything halfway healthy on the menu. I decide to pull in and take a look at the menu.
I walk inside and take in what is now before me. The place is much bigger and more stately than its exterior presentation would suggest. Various strangers sit quietly in their booths, paying me no attention. The sound of clinking spoons and the smell of coffee and waffles make me smile as I stand for a few minutes looking for a waitress, who is nowhere to be found. Eventually I decide that I’m expected to seat myself, which I do, at a quiet booth meant for four.
The slow, muffled rhythmic activity of the place continues as I wait in vain for service. There’s no menu at my table. Growing impatient, I stand up and look around for one. I finally see one at an empty booth, so I walk over to take it. At the moment I arrive at the booth and extend my arm, I realize that on top of the menu there are car keys and a wallet. A split-second later, a sudden, loud male voice booms, “Hey!” I look up. A large man in his fifties walks toward me. He’s clearly pissed off. He thinks I’m trying to steal his wallet!
I back up a few steps in a defensive posture and tell him I mean no harm, I just want a menu because I can’t find one anywhere. He calms down and sits. I walk away, embarrassed, and wander through the aisles of the diner looking for someone to help me. There’s gotta be some way to order something in this place! I’m starving at this point. I ask myself if my body and my primary care physician would forgive me if I have the chicken-friend steak, because I see one coming out of the kitchen and it looks damn good.
And that’s when I awoke.
In retrospect, I’m pretty sure that the diner was loosely modeled in my mind after the Quechee Diner, where we ate sometimes on Sunday mornings in my old Vermont days. But I gotta put more thought into what the rest of this morning’s dream sequence might say about my current frame of mind and how I’m processing the changes that will soon take place.
Have a great holiday weekend, everyone, and dream good dreams tonight. Cheers, all!