After having met someone, somewhere (pity I can’t remember who, nor where!: it was an important part of the story, but now it won’t ever be recovered), I was going back home, for which I aimed the tube.
In Madrid subway stations (supposing that this was Madrid, that is) there aren’t counters anymore, but this entrance in my dream had two old-fashioned booths: at ground level, before the flight of stairs (up instead of down) that lead to the platforms, like some stations in Kiev underground. One of the booths had no queue, and I first headed there; but above the window hung an absurd LEDs lamp (switched off), like a motorcycle’s tail light, under which the clerck frowned at me in an unfriendly way, as if saying: “don’t come over here”; whose stare made me think that, were I to disobey her eyes’ silent order, I’d end up waiting longer than if I chose the other, busier booth; same as it usually happens to me at the cashiers in the supermarkets. So, I chose this second one, which lacked the strange LEDs pilot and whose clerck had a friendlier look.
After queuing for a short while, I was sold a ticket that, for those whims of the dreams, rather resembled a cinema’s than a subway’s: not an elongated piece of cardboard, but two detachable paper halves. And, indeed, past the booths and before the turnstiles there was a ticket collector, also alike the theathres; more precisely, a “collectress”: a young woman who, upon seeing me, smiled as if she knew me and said: “hurry up, lest you miss the train entering right now”.
Caught up in the hush of the metropolis, swept along by the other passengers, I barely had time to nod her thankyou and, unfamiliar with those particular turnstiles, I couldn’t even validate my ticket, both whose halves, untorn in my hand, I stared at in puzzlement while being dragged up the stairs by the human stream.
But I did then something quite unusual; not in the dreams’ usual unusual way, but from my personality’s point of view, being something I hadn’t done before, something not fitting the real Pablo nor the oneiric one–much that I’ve been years yearning for knowing how to do it, how to be more carefree: I stopped in the middle of the stairs and asked to myself: “so, what’s this hurry for getting back home about?, why should I need to run after this train, when all I want to do now is to spend a while greeting and talking with that girl? Damn! To hell with haste and time!” And unexpectedly I turned round, came down the steps and addressed the young lady, who had seen my move and was looking at me in merryment.
What happened now, as I could later realize, that villain of my Oneiric self plagiarized, slightly tweaked, from The tamarind seed‘s last scene, a lovely film that my Awaken self had been watching the night before: upon reaching the young lady–whom I still couldn’t identify despite her countenance being very familiar–we hugged without saying a word, as if we had been waiting for this moment long ago; we kissed too and, arm in arm, we left the place and walked away most naturally, forgetting about the tickets and the subway, chatting like good old friends; while at the same time I couldn’t stop wondering: “who is she, actually?, where do I know her from?” I had to find out!
I had to even though, at the risk of not seeing her again, the only way to find out was to presently get out of the dream–temporarily, if possible–in order to search for the answer in the archives of my true memory (that belonging to my Awaken self). So, consciously, I halfway awoke and, while one side of my brain struggled to find the trail of that face, the other side tried its best to keep itself within the dream, stretching a bridge–so to say–between sleep and wakefulness, in order to be able to return to my mysterious lover, not to lose her forever. But, alas!, both goals were opposed: the closer I went to the searched memory, the more awaken I had to be, and therefore, the less chances for returning to the safe bliss beside her; which bliss, even if a dreamed one, was always better than the bitter real life. Well, the outcome was inevitable: when I finally managed to remember where I had seen her before, who she was (funny: a nearby supermarket checker), there was no way back: the dream had faded away and I was irremissibly awaken.
But maybe… who knows..? maybe if I drop by the supermarket, and I talk to her… maybe she’ll also recognise me as her partner in the dream and, arm in arm, we can carry on our chat while walking away together towards the twilight.