I (Don’t) Spy

I seldom dream these days.  I think it has something to do with the sleep meds I’m drinking.  On the odd occasion that I have not, I’ve dreamed.  Vividly!  So much so, that the morning after, I’ve woken up feeling like I’ve had a hectic night on the town.  A while ago, I wrote about a Sleepless Mindfield.  Today it’s all cloak ‘n dagger, except for the fact that I had no idea everyone in my dream was a spook – not the boo kind, but the type that is neither confirmed nor denied.  I am bloody exhausted!  And to crown it, my one incisor chipped.  There goes my fantasy of becoming a vampire.  Damn!

I spent the night at Eliza and Nathan’s place as I do every Thursday night.  We somehow got talking about cults, which is the same thing that set off a post earlier this year.

“I watched an episode of NCIS: Los Angeles on Sunday at Harriet’s place.  It was about a cult called The Church of the Unlocked Mind.  I’ve been told that watching TV is not conducive to my recovery, but I didn’t think forty-five minutes would do much harm. Well, I had nightmares the entire night about being held captive- and attempted to be brainwashed by an inescapable sect that I was quite exhausted when I woke up on Monday morning.”

For some reason the three of us sat at the kitchen counter last night, eventually talking in whispers, as if the house was being bugged by a sect trying to recruit us to do their bidding.  Later the subject changed to foreign words and their meanings, which had us all in stiches.  One in particular that stuck with me is schnapsidee.  I’m sure if you close your eyes and think hard enough, you’ll be able to identify at least one such idea from your own life.

Back to cults ‘n spies.  Almost everyone that is close to me featured in my REM-sleep kopfkino.

In my dream, I’m in familiar surroundings, a house, but it’s not mine.  Like a shitty-B-grade-no-budget-made-for-TV-movie, virtually everything happens in the dark, except one point where The Toppie and I are in search of a manuscript of sorts on a mountain top that is protected by Sumo wrestlers.  I’m thinking this last bit was his ikigai.

I’m alone, unpacking dusty boxes, when I come across a photo album – an actual booklet-type one.  In it are photos of almost everyone I know (in real life), but they’re all in disguises:  The Bean a femme fatale of sorts, her mouth bright crimson and she looks deadly posing with what I hope is toy-gun, but my gut tells me it’s the real McCoy.

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The I come across another photo of my friend Allice.  She’s dressed in a technicolour coat, donning a Ziggy Stardust mullet and pointing at something off-picture with glittery gold nails.  She’s laughing, her mouth open wide enough to see her tongue-stud.  Judging from her demeanour, it appears that she’s at a party.  Halloween, perhaps?

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Just as I’m about to place the Kodak memories in my jeans’ pocket, a weathered note falls to the ground from between the photos.  The ink is faded, and the page is torn.  All I can really make out are the words Nothing seems, but it’s not betrayal and protect you.  Cryptic and mysterious.  Right up this wannabe-Nancy-Drew’s alley.

I head off to share my findings with Eliza.  She’s open-minded, and imaginative.  Maybe she will have a theory.  Turns out when I show her the album, her skin flushes.  She takes me downstairs into a dank basement and insists that we talk there, behind a newspaper.  Every conversation I have with her takes place behind a newspaper.  With Carla, clandestine conversations happen in an ornate, old church and every time we speak, it’s behind The Bible.  With neither do I ever find out what’s going on, but they clearly know something.  The only advice Carla gives me is to go back to where it started.

So, back to the boxes. This time I find a loose photograph of Nathan and Eliza in front of an aeroplane.  It looks like a model one, but upon closer inspection, I see the words In Service.  I swear I see Allan in the shadow too.

It takes me a while to unravel the mystery of the dream, but I realize that everyone in my life is in a cult of spies and I’m in the thick of things but not any kind of agent.  Even as I trek up rocky slopes with The Toppie to find the ancient book, I find myself wondering WTAF is going on.

Good thing the alarm went off when it did, because if it hadn’t, I may have found out that I’m related to 007.

Talk about convoluted…

Here’s hoping tonight’s sleep is deep and dreamless again.  I’ve come to prefer it.

A Randomly Obscure Subject: #RestroomSelfies

I’m not big on #selfies.  Of any kind.  I almost always look like a jaundiced bullfrog who had an extra helping of flies from the Lily-Pond-buffet.  On the odd occasion, I’ve taken one and though Oh. My. Word. Is that me?! But for the most part it’s Holy Crap! and then some other scary thought.

Of course, I have friends that are the Queens of selfies; particularly of the restroom variety.  Two come to mind.  I won’t mention names, but the first always shares a selfie from a restroom when she travels, whether it’s to a local retreat, or to The City of Gold or even Beyond Borders.  And she always looks so good.  She’s modest, so will tell me it’s the exquisite light reflected off the bathroom mirror, but we both know it’s because she’s a gorgeous soul, both in and out.  She can wear a paper bag and still look like a million bucks – a million bucks even looks good with hand sanitizer and beige-doors-that-don’t-go-all-the-way-to-the-ceiling-nor-floor in the background.

Then there is another friend, closer-than-blood who I believe on some level is a soul-mate.  She almost always knows when to drop me a text or some random picture of me that she’s edited with I ❤ U written on it.  Shit, when I typed that, I thought that sounds stalker-like but it’s not.  She’s married to an amazing man, but she and I have shared a great deal.

We are both on a constant journey to rid ourselves of the few extra fat cells that cling to our waists, so to motivate each other, images of healthy meals fly through cyberspace faster than plates from the kitchen to the table during a Gordon Ramsay dinner service.  When there is progress with Operation-Flatten-Muffin-Top, she will send me a selfie of her, with her tummy exposed, and I think I have got to eat more protein!

When she was a few days from being a Missus, she sent a group of us a picture of her in some obscure roadside gas station toilet, on the throne, with a rather descriptive caption.  I found myself think I hope she’s squatting, and that her handbag is not touching the floor

Today has not been a good day, yet like a ray of sunshine I just got a selfie from her, characteristic white public loo tiles in the background, smiling like a Cheshire Cat, captioned “I’m peeing”.  My first thought is Really, Sweetpea? but I will admit, I laughed.  Loudly!  Her randomness brought such a smile to my face.

I guess when you’ve been friends for as long as we have, the weirdest things can bring a guffaw from within.  Who would have thought restroom selfies too could bring some joy?

Telepathy?

I firmly believe in telepathy.  I believe that if someone’s name pops into my head that I must do something for that person – be it say a prayer, send them a text message, phone them or, if they’re close enough, go and see them.  For the most part, these feelings I have are seldom wrong, but it hardly ever happens that I am the person whose name pops into someone else’s thought – yet, it happened twice yesterday…

The first time was a text from Larry, a friend very close to my heart, who is resident in Port Elizabeth.  I haven’t heard from him in quite some time, so it was a pleasant surprise to get a text message from him – all it read was, “Hey Babes, just wanted to hear how things are going your side, I’m thinking of you a lot today.”  Now, I hit a bit of a downer yesterday, so the message came through at the exact moment I needed an outlet other than Rachel who I am on Skype with every day.  I simply replied back, “Sorting through some issues, but for the most part I’m ok.  Going on leave on Monday so it will help to clear my head a bit.”

Then…

I received another text message, this time from a number not saved in my phone book.  It read:

“Celebrate the flaws in your personality because without those flaws you wouldn’t have a personality and be the unique person you are.”

 Curious as to who the sender may be, I replied, “Thanks, but who are you?”

 Their Reply:  “Sorry, wrong number.”

 My Reply: “No problem.  That message was quite fitting for me today, so thanks again.”

 Late’ish last night I received yet another message from the unknown number.

“So, if it’s not a rude question.  Who are you?  Glad that my ill sent quote was of use to somebody today.”

My Reply:  “It’s not a rude question, but I asked first.”

Their Reply:  “Fair comment.  My name is Jake.  I’m from Jhb.  I typed a number wrong and stumbled onto you.”

My Reply:  “Hi Jake, I’m xxxxx.  I live in the Garden Route.  I needed a bit of cheer today so your message was appreciated, even if it was an accident.  Enjoy your evening.”

Jake’s Reply:  “Nice to meet you xxxxx.  Nice part of the world to live in.  Glad I could be of help.  You have a good evening now and smile.”

Which I duly did…I can’t help wondering if I will hear from Jake again.  Part of me is intrigued by this telepathic stranger, and part of me is terrified…I have promised myself though that I will not make contact with him, in case he does turn out to be a few clowns short of a circus.

Just a moment ago, I plucked up the courage to text Mark.  We spoke to each other on Saturday evening for the first time since he decided to ignore me.  I took him on in front of his dad who happened to be there too.  He denied that he had been ignoring me, and I decided to leave it be.  We had two dances and at the end of the evening I went to say goodbye to him (sometimes I think I’m way too well brought up for my own good), and he told me to text him sometime.  I told him he had my number…

But, as Fate would have it, his name has kept popping into my head today and the more I ignored it, the more it plagued me until I eventually grabbed my cell phone and sent him a message. 

“Hi.  I promised myself I wasn’t going to contact you so quickly, but your name has been popping into my head the whole day, so I thought I better do the right thing and find out if you’re okay.”

I wasn’t expecting a reply in light of his past behaviour, but I did.  Moments after I sent it…I was almost speechless.

“Yes.  I’m ok, but sorting out a lot of crap.  Hope things are well your side.”

I have decided that I’m not going to reply straight away.  I will later.  After all, his name isn’t popping into my head anymore.