August, 2016

9 12 15

8/9/16 - Title: "And She Leaps After Him"

Scene one - I'm in a wilderness area of rocks, sparse, twisted trees, plains - where likely there are snakes amid the rocks and scrub shrub sage - and higher places, extremely rocky, that can be hiked only if one is very careful. Due to the snakes and danger of a fall, neither area can be walked in a casual way, just for pleasure. One must stay on his or her toes. Even then, it is hazardous. At one point I feel trapped. There is no good way back. The way ahead is over or onto some kind of tarp or cardboard-like covering under which are probably snakes that will be disturbed and come out if one treads (steps?) on it. In the distance I hear or see my wife, Fran, out hiking with a friend, Teresa. They get closer and soon are at the tarp or cardboard cover place with me, and we try to figure out together how to deal with the situation.

Scene two - I'm in a huge surplus army stuff warehouse. Great quantities of things can be purchased for very little. A lot of older style, like 1950s-ish, typewriters are stacked up, plus lots of related materials, including typewriter paper and ribbons. There are also high stacks of unused yellow legal pads plus smaller pads for lists or notes. A fellow - a really nice guy, like Harold - suggests I buy myself what I want, plenty of pads plus a good typewriter, and I do put together a small pile of such things to buy for myself.

Scene three - I see Teresa and Harold. I am back some, with Frances. All of us are in one of the high, wilderness places. Harold and Teresa love each other and are hiking together. Harold, a big man, loses his footing on one of the big rocks and begins to fall. Teresa tries to help him but cannot get a good enough hold amid the huge weathered rocks. In any case, she is not strong enough, and he falls away into the void. It looks like he has a mile or more of falling before he'll hit ground far below. Teresa says "Oh God, I couldn't hold him. He's gone!" And she leaps after him.

8/12/16 - Title: "Vacation Blues"

Scene one - Am on a trip. It seems to be a long, complicated one, one partly with my mom, partly with my wife. Various other characters and family members are involved at times too. Mom and I stop at what we had hoped would be a kind of motel. It turns out instead to a campus dorm or co-op with common bathrooms and difficult ways of getting to them. Many women are there too. We could wind up in their bathrooms. Also, the sleeping rooms are with several beds next to each other and, besides no privacy, there is no agreement by others that we will all be quiet and try to let others sleep.

A very anxious little fellow wants to sleep so close to me he gets a little over onto my bed, his bunk bed right next to mine. I move him back and get up to go to the bathroom. He follows and asks me to gently touch him behind the ears and in his P-P area to make him feel OK about doing his business in a strange place. I decline, and he whines that nobody else will comfort him in that way either.

I can find no place for going, and when I finally get to what I think is a toilet stall, it turns out to be a shower instead, and before I get a chance to go I am drenched.

Pete and Allen show up. Pete is very noisy, keeping me and everyone with us awake. He asks how much is worth for me to leave this place and just go to a real motel. I say, thinking he's joking, around $200 or more. Mom enjoys Pete's banter. She is much calmer and taking things more as they come about this place than I am. We decide she and I, at least, will leave and, even though it is still night, maybe continue on with our driving trip back. I only have a VW Bug, but somehow it's big enough for Mom, me, and our stuff. I figure if I need to I can sleep better in the Bug than at this place.

Unfortunately, I forgot and left my glasses under the bed back at the last place. At a coffee shop I apologize to Mom and the others with us about this, but insist I need to try to get them back, though it seems likely I won't be readmitted where we were "sleeping" till morning. By then the bed may have been moved and remade and the glasses harder to find or they might have been broken or lost, but hopefully not.

Scene two - Allen has been with us and offered some practical advice in his low-key, quiet way. He can seem ineffectual, however he's able to get done what is called for without a lot of fanfare, narcissism, or drama (the latter much more Pete's style.)

Will is there, or recently has been, as well. We had tried to tell him how to return in his car, but it is a big city, and he is deaf, and we fear he may have gotten lost. Hopefully, he has a good GPS that can show him (not tell him audibly, of course) what to do, how to maneuver.

I wish the trip were over, without all these practical and personal complications, and am still (or now) just extremely tired and really needing to pee, and yet there evidently will still be no simple, direct, and fast way home, and Mom (at least) likely will be with me the whole time, not my idea of a vacation.

8/15/16 - Title: "Close Call with a Twister"

My nephew, Chris, is testing or demonstrating a kind of equipment, apparatus, or sensor that can detect nearby tornadoes as they are forming, giving the possibility of early warning. Frances and I are close to him, as are a few others, adults and kids, men and women. Chris points out that a dangerous tornado is coming toward us, and I see what he means. One appears to be forming and then looming from the sky off slightly to my left. It is nighttime or so overcast as to seem like night, yet I can see the forming twister. We are near some type facility, maybe a filling station, and are by the pumps (?). We decide to try to head for possible shelter inside. Just at this point, though, the tornado is so close and powerful that I feel it take hold of me, so I cannot go forward with the others. I try to just stay on or near the ground. It is not up to me, though, Either it will take me or not, a matter of luck. This time, it just barely misses taking me. The most dangerous moment passes. I am convinced we should take advantage of Chris' apparatus to better avoid tornadoes in future. Fran is skeptical. She dismisses it as of no real value. There is no point trying to persuade her. Fran's mind is made up. At least I can take advantage of it. Fortunately this time none of us were injured or killed by the passing tornado.

[Of Chris I'd say he is smart, successful in his career, practical, politically conservative, quite into physical fitness, and a good husband and father. Fran is very smart, often skeptical, and an exceptionally good student and teacher of nature.]

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