Monday, June 29, 2015

Rabbit in the Willows

Nothing of much importance to say today.
But I had a dream last night that someone was coming to get me; that he was looking for my house, and that he was more than single-minded about finding where I lived.  In fact, he was dogged in his determination.  He was a faceless, nameless stranger wearing a baseball cap with the shadow of its bill falling just over his eyes.  I was not afraid at first, but became increasingly concerned because of the vagueness of his appearance.  He had a smile that betrayed, what I now believed to be, his sinister intentions.  His face changed between that somewhat innocuous smile and the common cliché of a wicked grin.  It moved back and forth like someone talking out of both sides of his mouth.  It was rather disconcerting that I could not get a solid fix on his appearance, or, consequently, on who he happened to be, particularly since I remember some suit and tie business guy proclaiming that appearance is everything.

A cold nervousness took root in my stomach, then rose up from within me as I thought about this man, his probable mission, and the expected consequences for me if he, in fact, did find my house.  I pictured the 22-caliber handgun with silencer that he would use, the one that assassins typically utilize to dispatch their intended victims.  I pictured him knocking on my door as if he were from the gas and electric company on some routine inquiry.  I pictured myself opening the door, and the man raising that cold black pistol from his waistband and coolly putting one live round in the middle of my furrowed brow as calmly as if he’d just shot me in the head with a rubber band like kids do.  I fell beneath my own lifeless self.  He stepped over my crumpled body on his way to the kitchen to get a drink of water from the faucet.  I saw him stepping over me again to exit back through the door, careful to pull it shut on his way out.  He glided down the front porch steps, down the long walkway to the curb, and slid rather gracefully behind the wheel of a car as vague in my mind as the man’s own face had been in my doorway.

What I had pictured had not yet actually happened in my dream.  It was just my instinctual summation of what was about to happen.  As the dream continued I found myself at the kitchen table ruminating over a cup of old reheated coffee, mouth parched and dry at the thought of being found by this man.

And then, as I lifted the cup to my mouth for that first sip of nerve- calming relief, and the hope of drinking in even a small measure of courage, I heard a faint, but distinct knock on the door.  I was trembling like a rabbit cornered by a fox in the willows when a voice in some kind of eastern European accent calmly, but with very deliberate clarity, called to me through the door, “Mr. McIntosh, I’m here.” 
I began shaking even more vigorously, like the proverbial wet dog, and thought frantically about where I could hide.  But I held my breath, frozen to my chair, scared to even set my cup of coffee back down on the table for fear of being heard, when a second knock came louder, even more pronounced than the first.  “Mr. McIntosh, are you in there?  Mr. McIntosh, your taxi is here.  I’m sorry for being late, but I had a hard time finding your house.  I’ll be waiting for you in the car, out front by the curb.”

In my dream I allowed myself to finally exhale, like a pent-up hurricane breaking free of its inhibitions.

Like a big welcome sigh of relief.