Dreams of vague memories and familiar places | Mark’s Remarks


Dreams are something that have always been interesting to me. Sometimes I have dreams that stick with me for some time. One of those such dreams happened the other night.

I was at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, riding on the old Massey-Ferguson tractor.  I sat on that tractor plenty of times, remembering how huge the steering wheel seemed. There was some sort of doorknob thing on the wheel to make it easier to steer. 

I walked through the chicken house and also went out by the pond to see the pigs and pet the horses.  I went across the road and walked in the woods a little, walked along the gravel road to pick up shells, and then rode in the back of the old red Ford to a place we called “Cline’s Corner,” which was a little country grocery store still hanging on in the early 1970s. 

We bought baloney and longhorn cheese, then went back to Grandma’s kitchen and had sandwiches. She had little bottles of Coke, which Grandpa told her would “eat her guts out.”  

It seemed to be a mundane and relatively uneventful scene in my dreams, but I woke up feeling as if I’d just been there. It was all very familiar and real.  I was pretty thankful for the whole dream – even if it was just a little glimpse of very vague memories from my early childhood. Visiting with my grandparents again, feeling like a kid but still knowing I was grown up. Weird somewhat, yet very comforting at the same time.

I must have been thinking about our horses a lot, because the next part of my dream was about being in our hay barn getting ready to put out some hay.  It was incredibly real and I could smell the hay, hear the stillness of the soundproof barn with thick walls of stacked hay. 

After we fed the horses, as dreams go, the weather seemed to change and we were all on horseback riding the old trail ride hills.  I had my pinto mare named Lady, and I was even thinking about how to sit right in the saddle as the dream unfolded.  

For some reason, our trail ride took us to a little town called, believe it or not, “Barnhill,” and we stopped at a little wooden building where we bought small bags of peanuts and had Nehi soda.

We rode on along the trail, and suddenly found ourselves surrounded by flood waters, causing us to find an old wooden bridge in the field and escape to higher ground.

Dreams fascinate me, because if you are lucky enough to remember most of them when you wake up, you can piece together thoughts and conversations you’ve had over the days or even weeks, and watch how they knit together into some sort of a story in your head as you sleep.

I’d been thinking of the time that the bottom lands near the river flooded and people actually drove speedboats and skied on the water. This led me to think about traveling to Barnhill, getting our horses’ saddles worked on, and the guy in the saddle shop always having cool belts and cowboy hats in addition to a pristine old machine that sold candy bars and peanuts when you pulled a knob.

I’m thinking everything costs 15 cents.

A few days before that, I had been recalling “shell hunting” with one of my cousins over Facebook and  we had been reminiscing about things we’d done as kids on the farm. Not long after that, I was telling my students about what the “country store” was like and what shopping downtown used to mean.

So, that night, I guess my brain started rebooting or clearing out to make room for more information or memories. And so I got a little visit to Grandma’s and was able to take a tour, somewhat, of some places I barely remember.

When you wake up, treated to a “trip” of sorts like that, you are grateful.

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