Dream of: 21 June 1996 "On The Farm"

My father and I were standing in the front yard of the Gallia County Farmhouse, looking down toward Symmes Creek at the bottom of the hill. Between the Farmhouse and the creek stretched a small strip of field where my father had parked some farm equipment: his blue John Deere tractor, a bulldozer and another bulky piece of machinery. A second bulldozer, painted blue, was parked next to the tractor. The second bulldozer belonged to someone else – my father had simply allowed the person to park the dozer there.

As I had continued staring at the second dozer, it had slowly begun rolling toward the creek. In no time at all the dozer had plowed, blade first, into the muddy creek. Instead of sinking, however, the dozer stayed on the surface of the water and floated down the creek. Just as the dozer was about to go under the bridge in front of the Farmhouse, I noticed something else: a small boy (8-9 years old) sitting on the dozer.

Clearly the creek was high and the current was swift; obviously the boy was in grave danger. I hesitated for only an instant, then began running down the small hill on which the Farmhouse sits, headed for the creek, realizing I must try to rescue the boy, intending to leap into the water when I reached it. I had to jump over large white boulders before finally reaching the creek's bank below the bridge. To my relief, however, when I finally reached the bank of the creek, I found the boy's father (the owner of the dozer) helping the boy up onto the bank.

Once the man had safely brought the boy onto the bank, I spoke to the man. He was probably in his 30s and dressed in work clothes. I told him my father and I had earlier been admiring the excellent condition of the man's dozer and how we had been "enviously" looking at it, wishing we owned it. As soon as I said the word "enviously" I realized the word wasn't one which I often used and I wondered if it even was a word. I hoped I had pronounced it correctly.

I thought of offering to buy the dozer from the man. I knew the dozer would probably be damaged from having been in the creek, but I thought I would be able to repair it. If I bought it now, I should be able to get a good deal. I figured if the man had paid $1,000 for the dozer; I might be able to buy it now for only $200. But I decided it would be a bit tacky to try to take advantage of the man right when he had just suffered the loss, and I refrained from making the offer.

***

Standing alone on the banks of the creek, I began to notice just how turbulent the water was, as fast as a mountain rapid. I had never seen the water in Symmes Creek so swift. The muddy water (now flowing from east to west instead of its normal west to east) roiled with waves and whitecaps.

A tall thin woman (in the prime of life) walked up and stood next to me. She looked young but was probably in her 50s. I seemed to recall that she lived in a large house farther down the road. When I told her I had never seen the creek so swift, she said she had seen it that swift once years before. I thought she must surely be mistaken. I pointed to some objects floating on the water's surface, to how fast they were moving. I even threw a couple sticks into the water to prove my point. But the woman wouldn't change her opinion that the water had once before been so swift.

Suddenly I heard an explosion – a branch fell from the large maple tree in front of the Farmhouse and into the creek. I then saw that my father had a rifle or a shotgun and was firing into the tree. That was his way of trimming the branches.

I started walking back up toward the Farmhouse. When I reached the front porch, I noticed a deep trench which water had washed out along the side of the porch. The trench extended all the way down below the sandstone foundation on one side of the Farmhouse. Obviously this damage would have to be repaired.

I also looked under the porch, which was about a meter off the ground, and saw some lumber stacked under there. I thought my father's step-father Clarence had probably stacked the lumber there when Clarence had owned the Farm, before he had given the Farm to my father. My father was still standing there, and I asked him whether he thought the lumber under the porch was still any good. He didn't think so. I thought I should probably take the lumber from under the porch and dispose of it.

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