Saturday, 6 December 2008


Do you ever feel like there's huge world laid out and running itself inside your dreams? I sometimes wonder about the depth of detail and the seemingly random jumble of things assembling into something that makes perfect sense, until you wake up.

While most people seem to have reoccurring dreams, what I get are reoccurring locations. The same places pop up over and over again in completely unconnected dreams. Sometimes the people in the places remember me, even if I don't remember them, and sometimes even if I haven't been there before.

There's the most incredible shopping mall I've been in a couple times. It defies the laws of physics and has a glass-walled bookstore that goes on forever and has giant slides to get around... And there's the supermarket with the Star Trek style holodeck that had a wedding held in its big staff lift one night a few weeks ago. Or the old dusty bookshop I don't remember visiting. Despite the staff's insistence I wouldn't believe I had been there before, until they showed me my name signed on the cover of a magazine.

Last night I was in a park that I just knew. I knew that there were fountains just round the corner, I knew where the deepest parts of the stream were, the layout of the trees, the way the daisies were sprinkled across the grass, and where not to go because the kids are usually too rowdy. This time though, there was a palace there. An actual royal palace, but with sunbathers on the lawn. A fleet of helicopters flew down and the Queen arrived. I went inside and met her, she was most gracious, then Stephen Fry carried my suitcase in for me, it was huge and heavy and I felt guilty for packing so much to go to the park. Then my alarm went off and woke me up.

I like dreams.

1 comment:

SillyBoy said...

Oh yes! Over the last year or so in particular, I've noticed an eerie consistency to my dreams, as if they're all taking place in the same world.

The suburbs of London are little knots of streets, lost in forests and marshlands crisscrossed with rivers and streams. These waterways wander in and out of long dark tunnels, which play host to rusting machinery, mysterious metal doors, and distant echoing voices. The tunnels fascinate me, but I sense a presence in there which fills me with foreboding and dread.

Also in those wild outskirts are railway lines, rails rusted away or part-buried in fields or overgrown with trees, seemingly long-lost and derelict, but once in a while impossible trains still travel them.
The station at the bottom of my garden is a grand affair with four platforms and a proper ticket office, boasting an attached railway museum with a revolving room, and some kind of subterranean storage depot nearby. It's all still under construction, but there are already so many trains passing through that they occasionally bump into each other.

There's a park atop the local hill, reached by a spiralling walled road, where the curiously-named "U2 Experience" offers an ingenious pie-making vending machine and possibly the world's only usable public toilet. Elsewhere the hill ends in a sheer drop, Victorian houses and tea shops clinging precipitously to the cliff face, reachable only by a rickety footbridge.

The building where I work, huge and glass-fronted and enclosed in a steel frame, is served by about a dozen lifts of varying designs, all unnervingly unreliable. None of them go to every floor, but some of them go sideways if you know how to ask.

I like dreams too :)