Every so often I have a dream that was obviously intended for someone else. Last night’s tour of the unconscious mind was a case in point.
My dream self popped up in a hole-in-the-wall greasy-spoon diner somewhere in New York City.
The place was little more than a narrow closet: four or five two-tops running along one wall, a battered white enamel display case stocked with an assortment of plastic-wrapped mystery-meals, and a narrow aisle in between. At the back was the cash register and a doorway leading to the kitchen.
I know Mr Jung and Mr Freud tell us that we can learn things from our dreams. Well, last night I learned that zeppelin crews on the Rio to Lisbon route steal shoes from the passengers’ staterooms when they get bored. (Brawls have broken out over a pair of Spongebob flip-flops.)
I learned further that if you lose your wallet during the trip you are handed over to my friend Judith Levine for safe keeping — although her response is usually just to throw up her hands, cry “Whatever!”, and sail out in a flurry of crêpe de Chine. The trip takes three days.
Last night I dreamt that my family was being studied by a world-famous psychiatrist (the doctor’s first name was Hannah, but that’s all I remember of her identity) and dozens of my relatives had been gathered together for the purpose, almost none of whom I recognized. Even my father — who died some years ago — showed up in a cheap brown suit and took a stroll through the crowd and then wandered back out the way he came, without saying a word to anyone.