Monday, July 09, 2007

Dreaming again

I've never, to my knowledge, had recurring dreams. I do, however, have dreams in the same settings. Last night I dreamt for the billionth time that I was in my paternal grandparents' house in Stewartstown, PA. I'm not sure why my unconscious needs regularly to return there. I almost never dream of houses I actually lived in as a child, but for some reason this house--where I spent a lot of time--gets repeated work-overs.

The terrain shifts in interesting ways, not atypical of dreams. Extra rooms or wings will appear, typically off the attic or the enclosed back porch. The rarely-visited room where Grandma did her laundry in an open tub with ringer can manifest as anything from a subterranean cavern to a shaman's hut to an opulent ballroom full of tuxedoed politicos scheming. Often I'm seeking something I lost in the house. I go through boxes of old toys I used to play with there: clay miniature bricks, dusty Erector sets, rusty model cars and trucks--only to be frustrated. I can't get into the giant safe and fear what I need is locked inside. The small cabinets behind the fridge yield nothing but spiderwebs and dessicated liquor bottles with faded labels. The fridge itself has cows' eyeballs in brown paper, or piled sausages on plates (Grandpa was a butcher). It holds no answer.

I should go walk around Stewartstown some day. I had the run of it as a child. My friends and I had many secret places. There was a fantastic ancient graveyard with a monument to I believe George Stewart, who founded the town, or after whom the town was named. I think he was an early Postmaster of the US? Can't find anything on Google yet. Missy Jo and I would climb the gravestones, then scramble around under the baseball diamond bleachers, or inside the walls of the ruined recreation center. There were numerous friendly biddies in town with readily available candies, willing to fatten us up. We even had on our property several ancient barns and outbuildings--including an outhouse--that were fun to clamber around, in, and upon. And a big bush the neighborhood children used to congregate beneath on our side yard.

My childhood was often idyllic in a 1950s small-town way. Of course there was the drunken abusive wife-beating father and the divorce, but you can't have everything.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dude, I have a recurring location in my dreams too, for as long as I can remember but I don't know where it is and it is always similar but never exact. Every dream I remember (which is few) this place seems to be somewhere in it. Super creepy most of the time and very big!

Your lil sis

John Vondracek said...

I also always dream of my grandparent's house (never ever ever any of my OWN old houses though)

weird. Although I DID live at their house for a few months when I was less than 3 years old

I DO have recurring dreams though. always HAVE. strong imagery in my dreams repreats all the time... 3, 4, 10 times... all through high school, college, etc

interesting post though
(you can tell I'm bored at work today!)
:) jv

Geoff's Mom said...

I,too, dreamed of being in big old houses with extra rooms or floors to explore. Loves it! Wish I could dream those dreams again but lately they're all scary nightmares. Apparently our family has a desire to live in castles in Romania.