I was in that place again, that place and time I return to at least once every month. Usually I land here when I close my eyes to rest them for a moment. It happens in that instant when you doze off into profound sleep, yet wake up minutes later, perhaps seconds. In that instant, an entire journey takes place.
This time was different. I had not closed my eyes to rest. They had shut by themselves when the ball hit me as I sat there at the concert picnic. It does not seem that it hit that hard. Children were throwing a baseball nearby, far enough from the gazebo where the musicians played Celtic tunes. I must have been in a very relaxed state. All it took was a surprise nudge from a ball flying out-of-bounds, though there were no boundaries, really, just what seemed like enough distance. It was not their fault. I passed out.
It is not the first time I land at the far end of the merchants’ street in that dream. I know the place well now and it is as though people there accept me, even though I come out of thin air and vanish into it again, without notice. I know they can see me, yet they let me be, as if it would be too much for me to accept that I am really there; at least for now.
Again, as before, I visited fantastic sidewalk stalls featuring mesmerizing items the likes of which do not exist in the awake world. The abundance is remarkable. Clearly, they are never out of stock. You can pick one item and take it with you, yet nothing is ever missing from the display. And it seems you do not have to pay; just take what appeals to you.
I have held and admired so many colorful, artful and mysterious things from these displays. They are vivid in every way. One moment you are admiring and object, noticing its every colors and angles, deciding to take it; the next moment another object captures the attention and everything you take you never really take at all, but it never feels like you are leaving empty-handed. Upon waking, it is impossible to recall all the details for more than a few, very short minutes.
Now that I think of it, there are no merchants; only merchandise and a very abundant and colorful crowd, but you never bump into anyone, nor walk right through them. Perhaps all of us are knocked out, sharing the space of a dream for a while, then returning to our waking life.
If this is another world or dimension, then they have figured out how to be. It is a world of utter experience. There is no currency, no work, no lack; only color, creativity and abundance. This is a place where it is not possible to be out of work or out of food, and shelter seems irrelevant.
It is the first time I try to put it into words and as I do I realize that this world is probably rich in symbols to take, observe and savor the same way I savor the objects at each street market stall. It seems I do take many gifts back home after all. Something very deep and tangible remains after these dreams.
Writing exercise from the book Take Ten For Writers
Topic: A ball hit you in the head. You were out cold. Had the weirdest dream, beginning with the words, “I was in,” and using the idioms, out-of-bounds, out of work and out of stock.