They were sharing coffee. The room was warm and noisy. None of the other customers realized how important this conversation was going to be.
” Tell me, ” she said.
” Lots of stress in my life lately I suppose although when you’re knee deep in it you think – I’m only in a little trouble. The problem is that my knee deep and your knee deep might be two different things and maybe my knee deep is your over my head deep. In any case I woke up this morning and my first thought is – This is a dream I did not want to have.”
” And ?”
“And so there I am, there I was. I’m in New York City and it’s a beautiful spring day. The sky is blue, trees in full – green everywhere, very pleasant temperatures. It’s just perfect. The perfect kind of day you dream about.”
” And then she shows up after 35 years only she’s not in her 60’s. No, she’s 30 years old again but I’m my real age, I’m me right now. How can this be?”
Shaking her head she says ” I have no clue but your brain dug really deep last night for a reason I can’t begin to imagine.”
” Me neither. Not only is it a sunny, sunny day but she is as bright as the sun in her looks and disposition.”
” What did you do?”
” I felt like a ghost, like I wasn’t there but I was. I fumbled my words and staggered around. I couldn’t walk very well and I felt like I weighed about a thousand pounds.”
The noise level in the coffee shop picked up so he leaned in closer to be heard.
” She was happy, really ebullient. So I guess I should be grateful for that. But she acted as though what took place between us all those years ago didn’t matter. We didn’t talk about what happened back then but it was on my mind. She was still young and in that place. It was as though she had never aged. She was as happy as we both were back then.”
He went on hoping to finish up. ” I tried to forget the dream so I could put it behind me but I knew that it was too important and so I wrote it in a notebook.”
He sat back. ” I don’t know what it means. It was more haunting than wonderful. She didn’t seem to be troubled. Can you be haunted by a dream that has a sunny day, blue skies and smiles cause I sure am.”
His friend said, ” Here is what I think. Your brain and mind went looking for a good place to be. At first they thought that being with her again would be safe and happy for you but with you still being your real age and she being a kid again, well, that part I just don’t get.”
” I did bang my head last week at work” he recalled, ” I saw stars for a few minutes, hurt like hell.”
She laughed. ” I don’t think that is the reason for your dream although it would be interesting if you started having similar dreams.”
His coffee was cold. ” You know, just when you start to think that you have a handle on things something like this comes along.”
Then she frowned,” This is really bothering you isn’t it?”
He sat back and forced a smile. ” I guess that maybe this is the start of some great brain exorcism where I unload some of my past and make room for things to be. I don’t know what the reason for it is. I’m pretty optimistic these days, I have lots of friends who care about me, especially you so I have a lot to be thankful for.”
Leaning in he said, ” I just don’t get it.”
“Not everything is clear the first time around,” she continued, ” In the long run it will either make sense or it won’t. Maybe she had the same dream. Wouldn’t that be something? Maybe she’ll call you although I have to say that I wouldn’t be too happy about that but if she does then she does and we’ll both deal with it when and if the time comes.”
He sat back feeling sad but safe. ” Let’s get out of here.”
Sad but safe was not such a bad place to be.