Monday, January 02, 2012

Dream - The strange visitor, the march of the dinosaurs, the rejected loan, and the company picnic

On Wednesday, December 30, 2009, around late morning, I dreamed I traveled to the Midwest. I lived in street apartments maybe, though they seemed like homes crammed together. I went around a curve and saw my home, my home in the dream, not in real life. It was multistory, part of it used by other people, crammed next to similar houses/apartments. The street was a residential one, large enough for cars to park on both sides and for a car to go between them. The cars that were occasionally parked there were very narrow, with a squeezed look.

There was some kind of trouble with parking, though. It seemed important to park right against the sidewalk, and close to the other cars. Although I evidently walked there, I had to park the 1970 Cadillac, which was both shorter and narrower than in real life, and also had a squeezed look. I managed to get it between two other cars, evidently by picking it up and putting it there, first on one side of the street and then the other. A skinny little old man, a neighbor, came out and cheerfully helped me. He still had dark hair, and resembled Pete, the man who used to live next to us before he died. It was late in the afternoon, and the sun was low in the sky and gave things an orangish cast.

I went to my home briefly. My mother was there and some other people, some of the family I think, maybe including my little sister. I think there was some time before dinner, and I decided to go for a walk or was maybe told to get something. I walked back the way I had come, back toward where there was a section with stores. It was around sundown, perhaps slightly after now. I worried a bit about someone mugging me. I was going somewhere I really didn't have to be going, and it would be one of those accidents of fate, that didn't have to actually happen.

As I approached a place where the road turned right, or perhaps where it joined another road, already walking along beside stores and businesses, somebody gently came at me from behind, putting his arms around me, apparently as a beginning of trying to rob me. I shook him off somehow and went around the corner and down a ways, then crossed the street to a store on the other side. A lot of them were already closing, small town hours I guess. He came after me again, before I crossed the street and again afterwards I think. After a bit of a struggle, starting on the other side of the street, and then picking up again on this side, during which I bashed him against the windows, bending them in temporarily, almost breaking them maybe, trying to break them and shove him at least partly through them, but also concerned about doing so, both because of the damage to the store, which maybe couldn't afford it, and because it might seriously hurt him. He was a soft, gangly figure, maybe around six feet tall, which would make him a little shorter than me.

My brother came partway through the fight and helped me some, and I think another family member or two also eventually showed up. We took him in with us, to the house. I was not entirely happy with this. At first it seemed we were just trying to help him, but then it seemed they actually knew something about him. He was someone who had come out here to visit, some distant friend of some kind evidently, maybe even a distant relative. He appeared to be from some Eastern European country, and looked slightly like the Borat movie character. He was milder and less talkative, but seemed equally clueless.

There was an old fashioned mall, around the middle of town I think. It was laid out like a plus sign, two long streets crossing with a large open area in the middle. It wasn't covered, everything was outside. The small stores and kiosks out in the road may or may not have had any individual coverings, though the stores along the street were normal buildings. There also seemed to be one corner that led to some water, perhaps a small stream that went across it in front of a building, a small stream that nevertheless had a tiny wharf on it, apparently more decorative than actually needed, as the stream was very shallow, maybe a foot or two deep in places, less so in others, though it may have gotten deeper further on.

The mall was blacklisting some people. A tiny open-air bookstore in the center where the aisles crossed was handling it. It was night. The mall was very crowded. I had gone back there again, to talk to them about it.

The person who was being blacklisted this time was evidently the Eastern European person. It seems he had tried to shoplift a few times, mainly because he was clueless, but I think he did know it was stealing. I tried to change the bookstore person's mind, a short, slightly overweight woman around forty or so. She looked a little like the producer on David Letterman, though I didn't realize it at the time. (I realized Thursday night, 12-31-2009, that she also looked like a cashier at the Fry's grocery store, who I had argued with (though she was cheerful about it) the last time I was there, the previous Tuesday.) She didn't seem interested, though, she felt like she gave him enough chances, and she had had complaints from other people. I thought that he was really going to try to do better, but it seemed to be too late.

There was also some trouble with some small dinosaurs that sometimes came out late at night. It was some kind of local legend. I briefly saw them crossing the middle of the mall. They were multicolored and small, in the three to four feet tall area. At least one was on two legs, a long-necked slim one, probably of the egg stealing type. The others were mostly four legged, with short heavy necks, maybe little triceratops and ankylosaurs, perhaps even stegosaurs too. There were not many of the dinosaurs, I saw maybe six or seven, most of them together, different types mixed together.

I left and came back again later. It was late at night, and perhaps a day or two had passed. There was still talk about the little colorful dinosaurs sometimes coming out at night in the mall area. I saw them again, going at an angle across the center of the mall area again, and talked to some people at a store near one of the corners about them. We talked in somewhat hushed tones, watching them with wonder. They didn't seem dangerous, but you never really know.

Sometime later I went along a side aisle and down another to a small business. It seemed to be daytime now, maybe early afternoon. They were wondering how to get around the blacklist. A guy caught me before I got there and gave me something. He was from a nearby town, and had some kind of column he writes on the Internet. He gave me an award for them. It had an arc for the face of a clock, and projecting plastic clock hands, one of which had the award attached, at least the part naming who got it, and a stiff rectangular flap/ribbon sticking out and bent to a particular position, with a short double bend near the end, like a step, with his watch attached to it, the back of it stuck on it somehow, with the straps hanging down. It was a thin black watch. It was supposed to be a symbol of something and show it was really him. He gave the award to the people in the office, or to someone they were representing in the fight. His column, which just came out, was supporting them.

I took it to them and told them about it, and sat it on the counter, and set it up. The clock hands were moving now, as I pulled them out some from the arc that was the face. The people still didn't know what to do, other than going to nearby towns and trying to get past the boycott there, and hoping to somehow convince the people here to undo it.

I went walking to a different area, back across the main road that leads to and goes through the mall. I reached an office area, and went through a hallway that wound around over a floor that was uneven and slanted, like a forest path, and the walls were also uneven and rounded, this way and that, just some kind of plasterboard evidently, oddly cut and set at odd angles, or maybe possibly something like cubicle dividers, though solid, I'm not sure now, though I lean toward the plasterboard. There were generally no windows, just occasional notices or posters.

There was a room that my father had there. I went in and I think my mother was there, maybe someone else too. My father wasn't there right now, he went somewhere else. I went back along the curved irregular hallway, winding along until I got on a section where the hallway had turned in a U shape from where I had been, well past the short section of hall I had used to connect with this one.

I came to a room where I thought he might be, and somewhat slowly and carefully opened the door. People inside were talking, one in particular, saying something to the effect that "What do you want us to do?" or "What would you have us to do?" and maybe "You can understand." I seemed to be interrupting something, some kind of business meeting. I apologized for interrupting. I was confused initially about what was being discussed, but then I realized that they were actually saying that they have no real choice in the matter. By signs or posters on the wall I saw that it was some kind of MasterCard place. There was a fairly good sized group of people, maybe 12 to 15, mostly men but some women, laying and sitting on the floor in a rough oval, on pillows, bed pillows I think, with my father with them to the right. They were actually telling him that they can't do it anymore, that they can't wait anymore for him to pay them, and can't loan him anything anymore. They have looked at the company and have seen that it was no use, it wasn't going to get any better, and they were going to foreclose and take whatever was left of the company, which wouldn't be much.

My father was saddened, and perhaps a little bitter, but I could see he understood and accepted it. He looked somewhat younger than he does now. The people seemed sympathetic, or gave the appearance of it, but at the same time felt that they were just doing their job, it was something they had to do sometimes, and they had done it before with other people, though I could sense this more than them actually saying it. They continued to talk some though, sympathetically.

They were lounging around, dressed very casually, almost like a pajama party, though it was not a phrase that occurred to me at the time. A lot of them were dressed in sweats, or partial sweats, a lot of them with just sweat shorts, hairy flabby men with legs and stomach and chest and sometimes shoulders showing, though they usually had some kind of soft open shirt, completely unbuttoned and opened up. They looked really unattractive, flabby and with large amounts of hair. The women were better covered up, and generally sitting upright on the pillows, but seemed kind of medium to slim, bookish and with glasses, with unremarkable figures. The people seemed to be generally in their twenties or thirties, perhaps a few in their forties.

One of the men eventually suggested that it was time for their normal Friday afternoon barbecue, that they had every week, and why didn't he join them, attempting to lighten the situation and cheer him up some. He agreed to do so, and they wandered out onto a very large lawn, park-like, that had widely scattered tables and largish barbecue grills on legs and wheels. Other people were there too, from other parts of the company I guess, but also from other companies, and even families that happened to be there on their own. I followed along for a while. My father started doing something with one of the grills. I think some of the family was supposed to show up in a little while.

I wandered off after a while, back to the office where my mother was. I told her what happened. We tried to see if anything of the business was left, we and/or the company had some kind of investments, online I think, in the company itself and in some other things, but when my mother looked, it all seemed to be gone too. Either the investments went bad or they were seized, differently depending on the investment I think, though I think most of them simply went bad. There was something to do with the sea too, some of the investments involved it in some way, and I was seeing old bearded sailors in my mind, in yellow raincoats, holding pipes to their mouths. I think we went off toward the sea then some, partway there. We were going there to see something, to check on the investments personally maybe, going to an old weathered wharf, which was not far away and which the building seemed to slowly blend into.

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