“The soldiers ask the indigenous
people to transport them on horses;
if there aren’t any, they force them
to carry them on their backs.”
Dana Gelinas, from The Dream of the Just
I woke up early today, Friday, as it’s the day Dolores, the housekeeper comes. I usually get up early to tidy the casita before she arrives. I woke this morning as a result of dreams, not as a result of the schoolchildren, whose vacation began yesterday. I knew it was the end of the school session because they were singing and dancing, there were guest entertainers, and the final song ended with a crescendo rising on Feliz Navidad – not the song, just the phrase from some another song.
My childhood room was tiny, dark and cold. Except when it was summer and trapped the heat. The season wasn’t important in the dream because I, as an adult, was working for Trump in the room. My job was to crunch numbers, to come up with the logical arithmetical reason for doing or not doing something, which he always ignored. I thought it pointless, but my Russian boss, insisted it was not because it was what Trumplestiltskin wanted. My boss said I wasn’t alone in my pursuit of pointlessness, everyone did it because everyone now worked directly for the president. “Even you?” I asked. He harrumphed. Post-dream update: The boss’s face is familiar to me, a face from the 1950’s: big, square, gray, and with a full head of hair; one of Khrushchev’s henchmen, yet the name escapes me.
The reality setting: every girl in second grade had a crush on Chuckie Johnson, mostly because in a sea of black-haired Italian faces his curly blond hair stood out. I was paired with Chuckie for art projects, which he was very good at and I was not very good at, but somehow our drawings of horses were put up on the board for all to see (Mary Ann showed me her two drawings, one of a horse peeing and the other of a horse doing boom-booms, as she called them). Hers weren’t put up on the board. I always had the feeling that he tolerated me, and that I slowed down his game.
So, the dream.
We are older in the dream and he and I meet at an ice arena. We can’t figure out why we’re there, and we’re surprised that we’ve been paired. We can’t find the lockers to which we’ve been assigned, but eventually do, and when we do we find it stuffed with used hockey equipment, not in very good repair and cats, many of which are black — maybe a dozen cats in this tiny cubicle and there are all types of cat statues – porcelain, wood, concrete – where there’s scarcely room to stand, let alone to sit, and put on equipment. He’s disappointed at the equipment as he’s accustomed to only the finest and he’s terrified of the cats that have been walking on everything as he’s allergic to them. I had been expecting figure skates and a warmup outfit. I deduce that I’m to coach a girl’s team – but why do I have a full uniform? – and not play with him. He says to the equipment manager, to whom the cats belong, “I wasn’t expecting this.” I look at him and say “and I suppose I was?” She tells me that I’m to play with the men before I coach the girls.