The Porthole Dream

My late mother-in-law dominated one of my dreams last night.

I was on her ship. To my knowledge, this woman never owned a boat, never mind a large ship.

While I’d been with her, visiting, I was preparing to leave. Outside the ship, I was aware that it was heavily storming. Large waves rocked the ship. Winds howled. Sheets of rain fell from black iron skies.

I needed to go, to catch my flight, to go home. But first, well, there was the matter of my laundry. Done washing, I needed to put them into the dryer. I couldn’t open the dryer, though.

Men came to help. I gathered through conversations that they were my mother-in-law’s brothers. Appreciating the assistance, I managed to get the wet clothing into the dryer. Now I needed to get myself ready. Needed to shower and shave.

I went into the bathroom. A porthole was open. Ocean water came nearly to the porthole, terrifying me. “This should be closed,” I said to myself. I felt that I couldn’t close it without permission.

Leaving the bathroom with a backward look at the porthole, I encountered my mother-in-law in the hallway. “I was thinking, Mike.” (She’d always called Mike, her and her husband, although I went by Michael with my wife and the world.) “There’s no reason for you to go to the airport to catch your flight. You can catch it here.”

Although some part of my brain in the dream protested, I’m sorry, but we’re on a ship, that’s not possible, I said, “Are you sure? Is that possible?”

“Yes.”

“I wouldn’t want to be a bother.”

“No bother at all. It’ll save you time.” She walked off, as was her habit, as she finished her comment.

“Great,” I answered, then went after her. “There’s a porthole open in my bathroom. I think it needs to be closed. The water is about to come in. We could get flooded.”

“Okay, go ahead and close it,” she replied.

Happily, I returned to the bathroom and closed the porthole. I felt much better about that.

“Your flight is almost here,” one of the brothers told me.

I wasn’t ready. “Okay,” I called back. After rushing through my shower and shaving, I dressed while hurrying out to empty my clothes from the dryer. They needed to be packed. I had my suitcase at hand. I was thinking that the flight was early. I was thinking, how can the aircraft land on ship? Was it going to land on the sea? I was thinking, how can it land in this weather? I was thinking, I want to pack my clothes neatly but I need to get them into the suitcase and get going. I was thinking, there’s so much to do, and I feel so rushed. I was thinking, maybe I shouldn’t go now.

Shirt not properly tucked in, wet hair uncombed, suitcase open, clothes half in it, I declared myself ready to go.

Dream end.

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