Maggots in My Hair – A Dream

I was inside somewhere. After shaking my head, I looked down and discovered maggots on the counter. With a few seconds of thought, reconnecting what’d just taken place, I realized they must have been in my hair.

Horrified, I rushed to a mirror and confirmed, yes, there were maggots in my hair. I struggled to understand how they got there: from a cat sleeping by my head maybe? Then I rushed to tell my wife. Occupied with something else, she didn’t take notice. Dismissing her, I hurried to the bathroom to shower and wash my hair. When I checked the mirror again, all the maggots were gone. They’d fallen out onto the floor and counter. I started collecting them to dispose of them while promising myself, shower, wash your hair, hurry.

Dream end.

A Mundane Work Dream

In several ways, I deem this one of the strangest dreams I’ve recently experienced. It was literally like I was at work. My team were all there, working for me as in the early days of this century. Like that time, I was explaining some of the things I did and how it was done, instructing others to reduce mystery and increase illumination.

Nothing special. Then I was at home with my wife. I found three areas which were partially repaired. That is, the initial repairs were done, but they needed to be finished. All were regarding the walls where some damages had been inflicted. I called it out to her, asking, “What are we going to do about this? We can’t just leave this like this.”

Next, she and I were cleaning. She vacuumed the carpet with our Hoover upgright while I vacuumed the furniture with the central vac’s brush.

Then, I’d returned to work. It was a new location and I’d forgotten my coffee cup. Oh, no, I didn’t have a coffee cup! What shall I do? It was a joke with me and all my co-workers. I said, “Well, I’ll just use a foam cup (gasp, shudder), or paper, or borrow a cup, or buy a new one.” I set about doing that as a side project while greeting co-workers.

The biggest shock arrived. Lt/Capt Z, who I’d worked with for four years in the military in Germany arrived. He was completely as he was then, in his flight suit, sleeves rolled up. We each asked the other, “What’re you doing here?” We laughed and shook hands, happy to see one another.

Dream end.

I think this dream germinated with nostalgia, a sort of look back by my subconscious to more pleasant and predictable times. The wall repairs section with my wife was interesting. Looks like something is repaired but not finished. Although, the idea next that we’re, ‘cleaning up’ but going about it differently, was striking.

The Clothing Dream

It began…with work. Although I work for no one but myself now, most of my dreams these days skip around work and identity. It’s an amusing glimpse into my psyche, as if I’m saying, who am I without work? (I don’t consider writing working; don’t like to use that term for writing. Seems like calling fiction writing work debases the fiction. Crazy, right?)

Working for a man somewhere. I don’t know what I was doing, but I was good at it and enjoying it. He was sending me on a business trip. I’d been to the destination before but wasn’t overly familiar with it, so he and I went over a three-D map of where I was to go, to improve my comfort zone.

I had days before I was to leave, and had no reason to hurry. I went home as part of my normal day. We were sharing a house with another family. It was an odd arrangement. We also had young cats. My wife was going around, hiding treats for the cats to find.

I decided that I needed to check my clothing for my trip. I went into the closet and went through my suits and shirts. Nothing in there satisfied me, so I went off to buy more. Nothing in the first store suited my moods and needs so I pushed through stores, seeking the right product. When I finally did find it, after a search that took me from mid-afternoon to late dusk, I held up a suit and smiled, knowing that was it.

The dream ended.

The Lost Dream

My wife and I, with some friends and cousins, were in a temporary place. Cats were accompanying us.

It wasn’t a great place. An older building, it had a bug issue. Its brown rug was a little worn. Fresh paint would be welcomed on the walls.

Temporary, old, but comfortable, we were grateful for the shelter. Part of our gratefulness and acceptance was that we knew a change was due. We just needed to endure for a short period.

The cats were busy playing and eating. My wife went off somewhere. I took up residence with the cats in another suite of rooms. Why? These things weren’t explained. I was watching television and trying to kill an insect that bugged me. (Yeah, sorry for that pun.) I worried that the insect, something with many legs and a pincer was a threat to the cats. That’s what prompted me to attempt to kill it. But I was trying to kill it gently.

That didn’t work. The thing got away, going under a piece of furniture and disappearing. Meanwhile, I had a huge television turned on and kept surfing through offerings. My wife and cousins returned. A disjointed conversation ensued. I understood it (I think) in the dream but it’s hazy now. The essence of it was that we were in the wrong place and needed to go to the right place. We divvied up tasks. I took the television, carrying it to the next place, with a promise to return for the cats.

I knew the way, yet took a wrong turn and became lost. I was supposed to be able to go from the wrong place to the right place without going outside, but I’d ended up outside.

A light, early evening rain was falling. Trees and bushes overhanging the walkways gave some shelter but water was gushing over gutters and out of drain spouts. Protecting the television, I navigated the paths, yet couldn’t find my way.

Discovering an open door, I slipped into there, thinking that I had to return to the inside. I was in a garage. Trying another door, I entered a dining room. A family was seated at the table eating dinner. I apologized to them, explaining that I was just cutting through to return to the inside.

Amenable to my use of their house as a shortcut, they barely paused in their meal except to reassure one another that it was alright. Leaving their house, I found myself in familiar hallways and knew where to go, and that everything would be okay.

Secretly

The sun is beating on my head through my hat. I’m just the help. It’s a role that I enjoy.

Some.

“Boss me around, baby,” I do NOT say. I stay mute, gloves on hands, left arm in its removable brace, hoe nearby, spade in hand.

My wife is the master, planting her garlic for winter. She’s serious about her garden. Fresh bulbs had been procured, along with the right soil and fertilizer. Potatoes occupy the usual garlic winter home. A new one is required. “Somewhere in the sun,” she proclaims with steely vigor, looking around.

A song spurts into my head. Oh, hey. Did you happen to —

“We need to move the compost bins,” my wife declares.

We’re in the side yard, where most of the gardening is done. Boo, the backyard panther with a white star on his chest (like he’s sheriff) (guess, that would be a floofriff) moseys along toward us, talking as he comes. One compost bin (previously emptied) is moved to a new location. With this happening, Boo retreats to the backyard He wants nothing to do with work.

I shovel the compost from the full one to the empty one’s new location. The song resumes it secret playing in my head. Oh, hey. Did you happen to see the most beautiful girl in the world. And if you did, was she crying?

Yes, Charlie Rich is serenading my brain with “The Most Beautiful Girl” as I do as I’m told. (We’re now on breaking up the soil where the garlic is to reside.) I blame my mother for this song. While Charlie Rich’s voice and the accompanying music is coming off vinyl courtesy of Mom’s mohogany Magnavox console stereo, it’s Mom singing along along with Rich who is actually singing in my head. She used to frustrate me by singing this song when I was trying to talk to her about it. It was apparently funny to her. The song came out in 1973. I would turn seventeen that year. I’d left home a year or two before to live with Dad, but would return to Mom for major holidays. Dad, single guy that he was, didn’t do holidays.

Why did Mom sing that song to me? Why was I singing today? These the mind’s mysteries. At least, they’re my mind’s mysteries. I don’t know what goes on in others’ minds. I barely comprehend what’s happening in my own.

“Now I just need to water them.” My wife was finished. I was dismissed.

It was a good day. Time to go wash my wife’s car. Wonder what song will be playing?

Oh, wait, Rose Royce begins their 1976 hot song, “Car Wash”. I was stationed in the Republic of the Philippines when it was out. My good buddy Bopie introduced it to me.

At least this one is task appropriate.

The Crashing Dreams

What does a smoking motorcycle, a Mustang without brakes, and a double-decker tour bus have in common? Well, they were all part of my dreams last night.

In the first, I stepped out of my house and walked down the street. What’s striking for me is that this is my real house and street, where I’ve lived for the last fourteen years. My neighbor, who’s resided beside me that entire time, was on his motorcycle with his girlfriend. (Said neighbor typically has six to nine motorcycles in his garage.) This one was a gray bike with a sidecar (which he does not own). I paid little mind to them other than to wave, as they, talking and on the bike, passed, heading down the hill. But I heard her say, “It’s smoking.”

Watching, I agreed; the bike was smoking. I couldn’t tell where the smoke originated.

Backward, they came back up the street. I thought he wanted to say something and prepared to tell them that they motorcycle was smoking, but after passing me going up the hill backwards, they went down back down the street trailing growing plumes of gray smoke. As they reached the bottom, the motorcycle burst into flames. The then rode back up the hill toward me.

The dream ended.

In the next one, I was at home with a female friend. We were chatting as we sat on the sofa. I asked her if she wanted something to drink. I offered cranberry juice, beer, wine, and, of course, water. Before she answered, my wife came home.

Several people, including children, were with her. One man carried a complicated toy. As this all happened, a Ford Mustang appeared. An older model, it’s on golden jacks to hold it up. Parts are strewn around it. Someone says, it’s a project car.

I played with the complicated toy. A basketball-sized light grey sphere, it had multiple buttons. Pushing some caused wings and wheels to extend or retract. Pushing another caused videos to play in a small screen.

After playing with the sphere, I checked out the Mustang. Its wheels and tires had been removed. Despite that, I got in with intention of moving it forward a few feet, as it was blocking things. I did move it by releasing the parking brake, but then discovered it wouldn’t stop. With the guy yelling, “Stop, hit the brakes,” while running behind me, I gently came up to a stop against a square metal rod that was sticking up.

“Why didn’t you stop?” he wanted to know, catching up.

“This car has no brakes,” I answered. Though it was still on jacks (how the hell it rolled forward, I have no idea), I pointed out that the brakes had been removed.

Despite that, he insisted, “It has brakes,” though I kept pointing at the empty wheel wells and telling him, “No, it doesn’t, look.”

I finally walked away from him in exasperation. My female friend was standing close by. “Oh, my God, I forgot your drink,” I said. “What would you like?”

“I’m just leaving,” she replied.

I then realized the guy and the Mustang was gone. “Where’d they go?” I asked my wife. “He doesn’t have brakes. It’s not safe. We need to stop him.”

The dream ended.

Next, I’m driving on a narrow street through a town. Though it’s two lanes, it’s extremely narrow, crooked, and uneven. A white, older van tries to pass me. He swerves dangerously close as he does. I speed up. Ahead is a double-decker tour bus. I can’t believe it’s on these streets. It’s swaying back and forth, threatening to tip over to one side or the other.

I want to pass the bus. I can’t because the white van is in the other lane. The white van turns off but the road has narrowed to one lane. I can’t pass the bus now. As I feared, it wobbles hard right. Falling against a building, it crashes to a halt, blocking the road.

The bus is leaning against the building. I stop. First, I need to see if everyone is okay. Second, I want to get pass this bus and go on.

I enter the bus. I’m on the top level. I find that it’s actually three levels. I call out, “Is anyone hurt?”

Various replies come back. Many say, “No,” but some say, “We’re alright.” Others say, “Are we there yet,” and “We’re hungry. When are we going to eat.”

I explain that I’m just checking on them, I’m not part of the company, but someone will be coming along. Meanwhile, I work my way to the front of the bus and then down the steps. Once down, I exit the bus and leave.

End of dream.

Layers of Dreams

I was walking, and needed to cross the street to get my car. I decided to sell that car and get a new car. A new car wasn’t available, so I kept walking.

It was a suburban street, one like a winding paved street through a housing sub-division. My mother came by in a car. She was driving a big green convertible. The top was down. Ice cubes filled the back.

She stopped to offer me a ride. I said, “Why are you driving this big boat?” It looked like a ’63 Lincoln. She replied, “It’s my car.”

“Why is the back was filled with ice?”

“In case I need it.”

Thinking, why would anyone need so much ice, I got in the car. She said. “Of course, I really shouldn’t be driving. I’m drunk.”

I said, “Let me drive,” and opened the door to get out. My wallet fell onto the street. I kicked it a little ways away. As I went to get it, my mother drove off. I could see her looking in her rearview, so I kept shaking my head.

I went into a store to buy a new car. As I walked around, I encountered others and realized that I wasn’t wearing a mask. Finding a mask, I put it on and continued walking around. I encountered many others without masks. I always asked them, “Why aren’t you wearing a mask?” They began avoiding me and leaving the store.

I was at home. People were coming for a meeting. I was preparing snacks for them. Mom was helping. I arranged food on plates. My wife came up with a large platter of uncut cheeses. “What should we do with these?” she asked.

“Cut them and put them out,” I replied. Then, I cut them all with one knife, making little slices as Mom and my wife watched. As I was placing the slices on plates with other food, someone said, “The plan is changed. We won’t be eating. We’re meeting someone else.”

My wife asked, “What do we do with this cheese?”

I answered, “Wrap it up.” Then I wrapped it up, to show her what I meant.

I still needed a car. Going outside, I found a gleaming black machine. I circled it, admiring it from different perspectives. “I think this is my car,” I told a friend who came by.

He laughed. “Of course it is.” Seeing confusion on my face, he said, “It’s always been your car.”

Dream end.

The Pie and the Professor

I dreamed I made a pie. I think it was something creamy but it looked like it might have been key lime. The flavor was never addressed.

I was talking to a friend on the phone. A retired Yale professor of literature, Herb, he’s a social activist and someone I admire. Never dreamed about him before, though.

I told him about my pie during my telephone conversation with him. He said it sounded good, so I told invited him over to have some whenever he was in the area.

Next, I’m walking down the street. It’s a sunny, pleasant day. A dark blue Volkswagen is coming toward me, a diesel, from its sound. I think that can’t be my friend, because he doesn’t drive a VW, but then he pulls alongside, and it’s him.

He puts down his window. “Michael! I came by to taste your pie.”

Well, cool. We go into the house. I’m about to serve him a slice when my phone rings. A woman on the line says her name is Lily and she’s my friend’s wife. Except I know his wife and her name isn’t Lily.

She tells me that she needs him to come home right away. I relay this information. He replies, he’s going to have a piece of pie first. I relay that to Lily and hang up. Then I serve Herb some pie. Grinning — as he’s so often doing — he sits down to eat.

Dream end.

A Year of Change

That smell of wet, burnt wood from a large fire bristles in my memories.

1971. I was fourteen. Dad had just returned from an overseas military assignment and took me in, a refugee from an unhappy time with Mom and her husband then. We lived in Dayton, Ohio, first in an apartment, and then in Wright-Patterson AFB base housing, in a place called Page Manor. We lived there from the beginning of July to the end of August. Then, an opportunity came up. He retired from the military to start a new chapter to his life.

He and I moved to West Virginia and he began his new job. Housing was limited so Dad bought a mobile home. A space was found for it in a trailer park. School started. A month later, the trailer burned up. Days were spent trying to recover what we could from the trailer. I carried a smoky odor around my clothes for months.

Dad’s co-worker let us crash at their place, but it was crowded, and the co-worker had a young wife and a new baby. Goaded by her disenchantment to be rid of us — nothing personal, and I understand it — we found a new place to live within a month.

Coincidentally, that was the same time that I met the girl who would become the woman who would become my wife. We married in 1975, less than four years after meeting. We’ve been together since then, although we’ve had separations and struggles. Amazing to think that I’ve known her since 1971 and have been married to her since 1975. It seems like a lot longer… Bet it seems even longer to her.

It’s all sharp in the head, strong in the memories, that period, a time of destruction, change, and beginning. I can’t say that I don’t look back; I’m always looking back, then turning around and looking forward, re-establishing where I’m at, and moving on.

Or trying to.

Some Dream Highlights

Such a strange, long dream.

At one point, I let a little pet mouse out of the bathroom into the rain. Yellow walls and a naked yellow light, decrepit age, and a sloping dirt floor defined the bathroom. I didn’t want to let the little mouse out. I knew it was storming and night, unsafe conditions, to me. I didn’t know what the mouse knew. Letting him out with regret, I vowed to check on him.

Then, dreamshift, I was at work, a new job with a familiar feel. A new boss arrived. Others were at work at clusters of desks. I was shown a desk that was to be mine but decided to find and reclaim my previous place, which I then did. I cleaned it, finding old stuff of mine. Sorting it, I decided what to keep and toss. Then, speaking with a female co-worker, I re-oriented my desk to watch the front door. I told her that I wanted to see what was going on. She agreed that was the best way to face.

My mail was delivered. It was a lot but not as much as I expected. Off I went to find the rest. As I began, the office administrator arrived with a large bundle of mail for me.

Now, dreamshift again, I was leaving with my wife to return to our hotel. First, I went back to the yellow bathroom and pulled open the door. The little mouse hurried in from the rain with a grateful look my way.

My wife and I were walking through a large market on the way back to the hotel. Then she said, “I want to get something.” I asked her what. She replied but I couldn’t hear her. She went off, leaving me to mill around.

Friends in the military came by, heading to the marshalling area to deploy. I was happy to see them. Walking with them, I told them about changes in the area because they weren’t aware. Breaking off as they arrived at their destination, I joined up with my wife. She was still shopping. Like before, I asked her what she was after. She replied but I couldn’t hear her. She went off, leaving me with a commiserating shop owner. I decided to continue to the hotel instead of waiting.

Dream end.

 

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