Dearest Rachel –
A quick word of warning: this particular letter is not going to make any sense, it’s going to hop between one image or moment and another. That’s because everything listed here happens in my sleep, or just as I’m yanked out of it.
So, the other night, I was in in the middle of a dream where in we were arriving at the local amusement park. For whatever reason, they had hoisted a flag, showing their support of environmental causes. I’m pretty sure it was solid green rather than the ecology flag that was fairly trendy back when we were growing up (which, now that I think about it, would mean that they raised the old flag of Libya – go figure, dreams).
I remember thinking something to the effect of so does this mean that they’re going to change their name? I mean, the ticker symbol on the stock market is literally SIX; how is this going to work if they start calling themselves Seven Flags?
How does Ten Flags Great America sound? And actually, there’s more than these, so if you wants to squawk about how I missed your favorite, I’m aware it’s missing… I just don’t know how to load more than ten images at a time in one of these layouts.
[For what it’s worth, the thought has occurred to me while looking at all these flags: given that most Americans are painfully aware of the stereotype stereotype of the fat American, why would we have such a predilection for all these horizontal stripes? We should know that this just makes us look all that much more fat.]
It was at about this point that Chompers went and woke me up, whining about something or other. Turns out, in his nighttime ramblings, he managed to imprison himself on his floof. So his front legs were one side and his back legs on the other, and all of his legs are too short and too weak to lift himself up and off of it, and that’s why he was complaining. Between the dream and the hour (it was about 4:30), I was in no condition to pick him up and sit him down elsewhere and let him run ramble about further. I simply picked up one side of the floof, and he did a complete 360° barrel roll (yes, a barrel roll, not an aileron roll – unlike StarFox, our old boy doesn’t have wings, let alone ailerons), before landing in a heap on a nearby blanket, where he proceeded to sleep for nearly another four hours. So… yay?
Other mornings, I wake up with some song or another running around in my head. We used to refer to those as ‘earworms,’ and – like with your dreams – you suffered from them rather more often than I did as well – and would frequently tell me about them on Sunday mornings when we were getting ready for church. I think you were trying to cure yourself of the earworm by giving it to me. For my part, I would usually advise you to think of some other song to drown out the one that was running through your head (assuming that you would rather not have it there). Although, to be fair, sometimes the song I suggested as a replacement you considered worse than the one you already had in your head. Hey, I never forced you to take my advice.
Most of the time these earworms stood on their own. But just this morning, I woke up with Elton John’s “Crocodile Rock” (an old favorite of Daniel‘s when he was a little kid – and I think that the Rocket Man has been on my mind in any event, as the ads for his absolute final farewell tour has been unavoidable these days) running through my head, complete with the image of a fairly elaborate sculpture making up the outline of a crocodile, built with a stiffened garden hose, with the open end serving as a tongue, spewing water out of its wide-open mouth. I want to say it was guarding the entrance of some water park, which would explain the piped-in music associated with it (because don’t all water parks have speakers all over, blaring out classic Top 40 hits from before our time like that?) but I think I’m getting my dreams too much credit. Anyway it was still a vivid image, and I wish I could have an illustration, but I’m just not that good of an artist. Why do you think I keep trying to recruit Erin for that dream of a YouTube channel I have?
At this point, I think I’m going to close this letter out for now. I was going to use this post as a sort of repository of the dreams I wake up with, but they’re fewer and farther between than the ones you would have. There’s no point in taking too much time constructing this letter, after all – as it is, it’s been a week and a half between one particularly vivid dream and the next. Besides, I want to keep these letters to a reasonable length – there’s no sense dragging this out forever and ever, where you might lose interest after the first thousand words. Still, if this continues, I might at least make this an ongoing series of letters.
It does seem, though, that I am having a lot more dreams than I used to. It used to be that you would wake up and tell me some of your more vivid ‘nighttime movies,’ leaving me wondering why nothing like the stories you saw ever came to me – or how it was that you remembered them so well. Perhaps now I’m having to dream for both of us. Or perhaps my erratic sleep schedule (thanks to the dog) is causing me to wake up with these things in my mind – which would also explain how you wound up with so many back in the day.
I hate to say it, but I do rarely see you in them. Again, I’m sure you’re preoccupied acclimatizing yourself to your new surroundings, and enjoying them immensely. There’s no reason to expect that you’d be spending much of your time – if that’s even a thing for you anymore – with looking down upon us, or making any attempts to contact and reassure us about how you’re doing.
Still, I wish I would see you from time to time. But if it ever does cross your mind, just be aware that my dream-state mind is so much more open these days to sounds and images, and I’d really like to see you again.