Excitement is a subjective experience. So it proved when I had the best dream I’ve had in a while. A dream that you would hesitate to tell most of your friends, fearing that they would dismiss it as outlandish. After all, when you recollect and exchange dreams, isn’t the entire purpose of it all to trade the different levels of abstraction the subconscious mind reaches? Maybe not. But it was still a heck of a dream.
Picture this. You’re in a valley surrounded by electric blue mountains as far as the eye can see. There’s not a cloud in the sky and yet there’s that mysterious mist floating in the air. The heavens may break into thunder and lightning at any moment, yet it is pristine (it was allowed in Inception, I can’t see why it can’t work here). Fix that aspect ratio, zoom in a little bit into the surroundings and a great lake greets you. Its shallows glimmering with sunlight, you see the reflection of this light on indistinct faces around you, lost in some incoherent chatter amongst themselves. Too afraid to speak to those treacherous shadows, you peer into the depths of the lake and see great shapes moving around. Suddenly, a fin cuts through the surface of the water, the glistening droplets bouncing of the shark’s body like beads of pearl as it gracefully arcs back in with intent. There is no menace here, the cool gentle breeze rushing through your hair reaffirms that fact.
What do you do now? You see no change in the faces on the banks as they keep babbling. Maybe it was a conversation that was taking place in real time, a world changing debate on whether to have samosas or jalebis for high tea. The appearance of a whale’s tail seems to steel your mind. Respectful distance be damned. There’s a small island in sight, conveniently located off centre to the lake of course. Swim for it. I haven’t neither seen Jaws the film, nor did I see any in the water. I swam for it.
Revisit that raw emotion you felt when you conquered water. When they throw you in the deep end after all that training and you still almost drown, your lungs scream for air and your brain cramps with fear. That exhilarating feeling that you mustn’t, it returned. The island was reached and you’re exhausted. It’s not a nice sandy beach, it’s coarse, raw and uninviting. You’ve never felt better resting your back against anything else. In a daze, you lift yourself up and the coup de grace greets you. The sea serpent’s long scaly back, rolling in slow motion, in and out of the water. The scales, green and blue glowing like hot coals in the sun, absolutely hypnotize you. Again, there is no menace. You watch the magnificent beast, never showing its face, swim majestically between the peaks reflected in the water. Sinking back onto the rocks, you watch the creature swim away as dusk unfolds and the faces disappear.
It’s good to be alive. It’s even better to feel alive when you’re dead to the world.