An unexpected dreaming phase happening these last couple weeks or so…
I am walking along a trail of brush and grasses, exploring. I come across what looks to be an abandoned campsite. I don’t see anyone in the area, though I hear the voices of a group of high school girls in the distance.
I spot an empty glass jar and pick it up. Intrigued by the distorted view created by its textures, I remove the lid and set it on the ground so I can take pictures through the glass.
I hear rustling sounds. People are returning to the campsite. As they arrive, they begin putting on gas masks and other protective gear. One of them hints that I might want to leave the area.
I see the spray hose. I start running.
GAS CLOUD! RUN! I shout as I run, occasionally looking back to make sure I’m ahead of the cloud of gas that I am now fleeing. As I approach my companions, they drop whatever they’re doing and run.
I emerge from the alley, still shouting about the gas cloud. Several cars turning onto the street screech to a halt to avoid hitting me. I warn the occupants of one car to close their windows.
As I reach the other side of the street, I become aware that this is a coordinated effort. On every block within seeing distance, there are people wearing gas masks and spraying gas from portable containers.
Just before I reach the corner, I pass one of these people in mid-spray, so the spray hits the left side of my jacket, between the arm and my belt. I wonder how much farther I will get.
A block after turning the corner, I pass another sprayer standing on a section of sidewalk tilted at a 45-degree angle. Somehow, I accidentally tip it towards me, so it ends up at a similar angle facing the other way. I mutter “sorry” and keep moving.
* * * * * * * * * *
We’re having a small party at the house on 52nd.
A bearded guy comes in and asks me about the location of outlets 39A and 39B. I ask him why; he says something about plugging in a solar converter (or something like that). I’m dubious about this, but lead the way. As it turns out, both outlets—industrial-looking outlets in metal casings about six feet off the ground)—are not in use.
I leave bearded guy and walk down the block, coming out on a street resembling 65th St. between 12th and Roosevelt Aves.
I see Linus Halpern on the corner. We start talking about bearded guy’s gathering; it turns out Linus is the music coordinator. I bring up the old Washington state driver license numbers and how they used to be easy to remember, but now not so much.
I also mention the fire trucks I saw about 10 minutes ago. Linus points to the photography studio mid-block; the blotchy black mark of a blown studio light is visible through the window. “That’s the third time that’s happened in the last month,” I say. “And the last time was also on a Thursday.”
I walk back up 52nd to the house. Bearded guy’s event hasn’t started yet, but he’s standing at the ready, wearing a pirate costume.
“Can I ask you a question?” I ask.
“Sure,” he says, and starts to lean in close. I lean back.
He leans in more. I lean back more.
Nearly falling over, I object. “Whoa, there! Personal space.”
He apologizes, explaining that he’s having trouble hearing me. I reply that I can talk louder.
“So, who’s organizing this thing?” I ask.
[Before I can tell him he should ask permission next time, I wake up.]
* * * * * * * * * *
A couple of notes: Linus Halpern was one of my classmates in elementary school. The street names referenced are all in Seattle.
(3 October 2021)
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