February 18, 2005

In my dream last night I was looking for something. I didn't know what it was, but I knew that I absolutely had to find it. It was an answer, a way out somehow.

There was a woman in a grey suit trying to keep me from finding it. I was in an office building, or a hospital, and I pretended to duck into an elevator but then dashed up the stairs. The woman in the grey suit took the elevator and I was faster and I found myself in a little office with big windows and a couch and I knew I was in the right place.

Two other women ran toward me with a look of fear and anticipation on their faces, and I knew they were also trying to find what I was looking for. I watched as they jumped through the couch somehow, diving headfirst between the cushions, somersaulting, their shoes the last thing to disappear. I looked up frantically to see the woman in the grey suit running towards me through rows of cubicles and I knew what I had to do, even though it didn't make any sense. I dove.

I found on a paved path into the most beautiful harbor I have ever seen. There were green rolling hills and little shops and sparkling blue waves and people with dreads and flowing clothing.

It was what I had been looking for. I knew that the woman in the grey suit had been chasing me for a good reason it was for insurance, for protection. Only the people who really wanted to find this place would be able to. Those who did not try hard enough would be caught.

I knew where I was, even though I had never been there. It was a utopia. I knew I could do no wrong. It wasn't lawlessness that made the place special; it was instead a knowledge that whatever I did would be the right thing to do. I was guided by an unseen hand to make the right decisions. I could do no wrong.

I walked down the path and into one of the shops, where there was bright colored fabric hanging everywhere, and surfboards lined up neatly against the walls, and sunglasses and sunblock on the counter. Two young guys with long blonde dreadlocks and sarongs greeted me warmly, and I had that pre-friendship feeling, the knowledge that I would know these people before long. I left shyly and continued to the harbor where I boarded a bright red wooden ship. I sat down to eat at a table covered with a white table cloth and looked out at the sun dancing on the endless water. There were other people sitting with me, people I had known in some other life. We talked for awhile, and then I left to wander alone on the grass as the sun set.

As I walked I felt an immense feeling of loneliness. There were people all around me, strolling on the grass, holding hands, sitting barefoot, watching the sun set, but I felt alone nonetheless. I thought of Sam and my family and the feeling was overwhelming. They weren't there with me. When I thought of my previous world, images of traffic and smog and mirages on the highway came to mind, crowdedness, dirtiness, confusion. But my loved ones were there and not with me. I had found an imperfect utopia.

I knew that if I made the decision to leave, I could never come back. I looked at the beauty around me, and the friendly faces, and the sun falling slowly over the water.

And then I remembered that I could do no wrong. I would make the right decision. And so I decided to go back.

I walked along a long dirt road through the forest and wound up at a red barn in the middle of the road. I walked into the barn and went home.