You’ve had them. Dreams I mean. I know I have them but they are rarely remembered and soon forgotten. Yea I get the odd fragment or two but mostly I seem to sleep dreamlessly. Dreams never bother me. I certainly have never suffered from nightmares.
But a couple of days back … well. A dream moved me or rather a dream affected me. This is how it happened and is still happening.
Kit arrived home from night shift about 08:15. Mostly I am up by then but this morning I wasn’t. I had woken earlier, about 06:30 I think but Yep I had drifted off again and so I woke to Kit’s smile and cheery good morning. But I had dreamt. I remembered some of it. But as is the nature of my dreams the memories soon left. I knew the dream had been intense. It had meant a lot. It had involved so much.
But one part of the dream had stayed with me. Haunted me even. It was so real in my mind. So tangible that I knew I was there. And I know that someone else was. And that frightens me.
1977. Don’t ask me how I know. It could have been any year between 74 and 80 but I just know this was in the summer of 1977. Remember that I have lost so much of this dream but the part that remains is of me walking up to my old home in Bishops Stortford. The day is warm sunny and bright. I can see two tortoises walking down the drive towards the road. They are white and I remember them. I had owned these two tortoises but many years before. By 1977 they were long gone. But I could see them now. Walking as speedily as tortoises can. The big one first. The real tortoises of my memory were normal tortoise brown but my dream ones are white. And I am worried. They are walking towards a busy road and certain death.
Not very scary stuff so far I know. Pretty urbane actually but the thing that causes me concern is something that I cannot see. I can smell the new tarmac of the driveway. I can see the leaves of the pear tree in the front garden moving slightly in the warm summer breeze as I approach. I can smell cut grass and hear traffic in the distance slowing as it ascends the sharp hill of Latchmore bank about a half mile off and a skylark singing as it rises above the cornfield to my right. And there are these two damned stupid tortoises seeming to want to rush towards certain destruction but the thing that even now as I write this brings goose pimples to my entire body and makes the hair on my neck rise is immediately to my left. Why left I ask? Left in Latin is sinistre. It is where our modern day sinister comes from.
I know that if I turned and looked left I would see the tarmac drive leading up to white painted garage doors. I would see my old car. I would see the enormous oak tree in the back garden. But I don’t look left. I can’t look left. I rush and stoop to pick up the tortoises but I can’t look left. I know that someone is there and they are watching me intensely. Following my every move with unblinking eyes. (Believe this or not but I have just had the biggest rush of goose pimples ever and even tears in my eyes as I write? Why? I just don’t know.)
And that is the crux …Who is watching me? Who can I not bear to turn and see. I can sense that they are female. That is all. I know they are standing there and I feel so powerless. So unable to face them. Why Why Why? Do they mean me harm? Are they trying to warn me of something?
I talked with Kit last night about it in bed and she felt my goose pimples of fear rise. I placed her hand on my leg so she could feel them. Tonight in the shower I tried so hard under the hot spray to look to my left in my mind. Even under that hot spray the goose pimples rose. I actually felt fear, or was it just fear of not knowing. I even question now whether I am losing my mind. Has my karma come back to haunt me from a dream. I wish I knew.
Tonight I am alone again. Kit is back on night shift 20 miles away. I am writing this alone listening to my mp3 player while drinking Shiraz red wine. Maybe in a minute I will go to bed. Maybe I will re-enter that dream. Maybe I will get the courage to look to my left. I will if I get that opportunity. I just have to know……… even if it kills me.