I don’t often remember my dreams. I’ve come to suspect that I rarely dream deeply unless all my conditions for a deep sleep are met: cool temperature, moderate humidity, quiet environment. We don’t have central air conditioning, and in the months from June through September, the temperature in my room stays a little warmer than my ideal until four or five in the morning—unless I leave the fan in the window on, which, of course, makes me feel too cold with just a sheet over me. (A blanket is right out until late October.) When I do remember them, what I’m left with are often very surrealistic, foggy snatches. This makes last night doubly unusual: first for remembering a dream at all, and second for realistic and very clear images.
In the first part of the dream, I was on a road, a straight interstate-type highway with a long bridge stretching out ahead of me that crossed over a river as well as canyons. This was the typical interstate elevated highway look: two spans, utilitarian design; it was only the panorama of the landscape that made it beautiful. There was a big city in the distance, something the road obviously led to—kind of an Emerald City vision, although it didn’t have that level of fantasy to it. The day was bright, although it was cloudier toward the city. I thought of the river—while in the dream—as the Hood River, which I’ve never seen; the major river that goes past the town of Hood River is the Columbia, which also goes past Portland. In retrospect, the landscape reminds me more of northern New Mexico than the Pacific Northwest. Portland has ten bridges that cross into it, none of which look anything like the approach in the dream, which I’m fairly sure was coming into the city from the east.
In the next part, I’d gotten to the city and I was in a hospital. Not as a patient, though; I’d walked in—it was dark (I remember the night cityscape, even though the first part of the dream was in sunlight), and the hospital was on a waterfront (although I’m not sure it was the river from the road). The color scheme I remember for the outdoor street scenes—sepia, neon, dark blue sky with sunlight fading (or perhaps rising in early morning?) around the edges—is one I associated after I woke up with Seattle. (If you took out the “Public Market” signs from the photo, that’d be it, almost exactly!) I was trying to get help of some sort for hellesfarne, which inexplicably involved calling another hospital, the one he actually needed help from. Despite all the medical aspects here, there wasn’t any sense of urgency about this; it was a consulting question of some kind, not an emergency. I was familiar with the hospital because I drove past it on the way to work every day—presumably, I worked in the city, and took the Emerald City highway as part of the commute. Curiously, I don’t remember hellesfarne actually being present while I was on the phone, although I think he was there with me.
I think I woke up briefly about that time; I don’t remember anything in that dream afterward, nor any other dreams I might have had last night.