Monday, March 17, 2008
Dreams of Lost New York
I'm coming to the end of another cycle of insomnia: that is, I've spent the past two weeks or so getting by on two or three hours of sleep, so tonight I'm going to swallow three or four sleeping pills and crash. Well, have taken, so if I begin to become incoherent, that's why. And if problems ensue, I'm saying the only reason I did it was because I heard it on Stephen Fry.
If there's anything good that can be dragged out of sleepless nights, it's that the dreams I have are proportionately more vivid. Some people claim to only dream in black and white; not me. I always dream in colour, and insomnia seems to guarantee Technicolor and extra vividness in recollection.
About a week ago, I dreamed I was coming home on the subway, but for some reason, I missed my stop. I was going to get off at the next stop and catch a train in the opposite direction to get back. But for some reason the next stop was Coney Island. Now, since I lived on the D line, my stop was the Ninth Ave. station at 39th Street: Coney Island was another 12 stops away. (To put this into perspective, it was 10 stops to work in Manhattan, and a lot of those were short Manhattan skips apart, like between 50th Street at Rockefeller Center and 53 St at 7th Ave. Brooklyn stops are much further apart.)
And this wasn't the fancy new Stillwell Ave terminus. In my dream, the Coney Island station was on a huge pier: at leats a mile wide and quarter mile across. The pier was made of blond wood and the two tracks (The Stillwell Ave station ends three lines, so there must be tracks in real life. I wouldn't know for sure since I've never been there) that were right in the middle of the pier, leading down into the water. There was also a ferry service back into Manhattan. The sea water was a brilliant turquoise of far warmer beaches.
There were kiosks like arcades and food booths all up and down the pier, and a few rides, like a ferris wheel, and a roller coaster. I was shocked to see the kiosk nearest me was some sort of Dalek game, with them painted garishly all over the stand, and a row of prizes that included pint glasses with daleks stencilled on. I don't actually remember the game you played.
It made me very sad to be there, I remember, and I was grateful to the daleks for making me happy. I decided to leave, and thought about taking the train back. There were two in the station, but they were both N trains, parked and waiting, just like at the other end of the line in Astoria, and they didn't stop near where I wanted to go. I decided to take the ferry instead, even though that went into Manhattan.
The ferry was sort of a sub when I got in, and launched itself under the water, with lots of bubbles floating up to the surface. There were two bubble-shaped window at the front, where two pilots were, and maybe about a dozen other people in the car. The interior was dark brown, more like a helicopter than the ferries or train cars. There were also rows of windows down the sides, and through them, we could see two or three Orcas swimming and playing. I determined that I was going to go to Jim Halliwell's Comic shop on 33th Street, which is across the street from the Empire State Building, and where I used to get some Doctor Who books.
And then I woke up.
I also had another dream about having a rent boy, but I was living in my grandmother's (now vacant) house. I will not go into torrid details of the first part, but later on I was worried because I had spent more time than I thought -- three hours -- and it was more than I could afford. The bill was $379, and I was worrying if I could cover than AND a tip. In the end, I think I could.
I pushed the poor guy into a bathroom because other people were coming in. Family, I think. In the end, he came out and I introduced him as my boyfriend, and he totally went with it. I really remember the guy, though: all tall, dark and curly and more built than I usually like, but not anybody I had ever seen before.
Oh well. The pills are really kicking in now, so I 'm going to scoot.
Where did I pull that title from? I googled it, but it doesn't come up, and I'm pretty sure it's not one of my own terms. Conjures up sort of a sub-par version of Benet's By the Waters of Babylon.