Dream of: 30 July 1996 "Extravagant Spending"

My wife Carolina had made a startling confession to me: within the last week she had gone on a binge and had spent somewhere between $15,000 and $20,000, using credit cards to run up the bills. But what was most incredible was what she had spent the money on: she had been paying for luxury hotels and meals for my step-uncle Ivan and my step-aunt Lou. This seemed incredible to me. I wasn't close to either Lou or Ivan, and I hardly ever saw them. I couldn't imagine why Carolina would be spending money on them.

Carolina didn't look like herself. She was the same height and size as normal, and she had the same black hair, but her face and mannerisms were different (something about her resembled the actress/comedian Janine Garafalo.) After confessing her deed, Carolina said nothing more; she simply stood silent and listened as I pummeled her with questions, trying to get to the bottom of this. It seemed to me as if she must be sick, and I even asked her if she thought she was sick. She just gave me a blank stare, but she still seemed to understand what I was saying. However I didn't think she was sick. I just didn't know what to think.

As I finally began to calm down, I began thinking that since Carolina had run up such debt on the credit cards, we would probably just max them out. I knew we had started out with over a hundred thousand dollars worth of credit on the cards, and I thought I obviously wouldn't be doing anything wrong at this point if I simply went ahead and used up what was left on the cards.

***

I was in a car, headed to the hotels were Lou and Ivan were staying, intending to stop them from running up any more bills. I was in the back seat on the right side, and Carolina was sitting right in front of me in the front seat. Somebody else was driving the car, and a fourth person was sitting on the left side of the back seat.

As we rode along, we passed the Gay Street House (the huge Victorian house in Portsmouth, Ohio where my father had lived since 1964), and I noticed my 1968 Ford pickup was parked on the street beside the House. I was surprised to see my father busy doing some kind of work on the truck. As we passed by, I leaned over to my left so I would be down in the seat where my father would be unable to see me. I felt guilty seeing him, a hard-working man, out there trying to save me a few dollars by doing some work on my truck for me, while I was out running up big credit bills. As we passed, Carolina didn't duck down, but I doubted my father would recognize her anyway.

***

Lou and Ivan were staying at different hotels, and we first headed to the hotel where Lou was staying. By the time I arrived at Lou's hotel, I was extremely angry with Lou and Ivan, thinking how they had been taking advantage of Carolina and me by allowing Carolina to pay for their rooms. I knew they had had the most expensive rooms available, and apparently they had even obtained separate rooms for their children, further running up the bills.

When I reached Lou's room, I burst in without knocking. Lou was sitting at a table, apparently about to eat something. She didn't seem surprised to see me, almost as if she had been expecting me, as if she knew this couldn't go on forever. I immediately told her to get up, that we had to leave. She didn't resist or complain. She picked up two large bunches of red grapes lying next to her (grapes which seemed on stems like red roses), and stood up from the table. She clearly knew she had been behaving badly by running up the bills, and she didn't protest in any way.

***

I was riding along in a bus which had only a few people in it. Lou and Ivan were sitting at the front of the bus, while Carolina and I were sitting at the back. I was still enraged at Lou and Ivan, and I felt like venting my anger. I stood up and began screaming toward the front of the bus. I pointed at the white jacket I was wearing, and I screamed that I had only paid $50 for the jacket. I further shouted that I had never paid more than $50 for any of my jackets. I was trying to contrast my frugality with buying clothes against their outrageous extravagance in spending thousands of dollars for hotel rooms.

***

Carolina and I were in the kitchen of the House in Patriot (the home of my maternal grandparents when I was a child, in the small village of Patriot, in Gallia County, Ohio). I was still questioning her about the bills she had run up. I had realized she had only told me about the charges because she knew I would soon receive the monthly bills in the mail, and I would find out anyway. I had also realized that one day in the previous week Carolina had taken a trip to Las Vegas and had spent the night there. I recalled that Carolina had been gone one night, but I had had no idea that she had gone to Las Vegas. It was startling to think that she could have just disappeared to Las Vegas without my knowing. I now wanted to know more about what had happened on the trip, and what kind of bills Carolina had run up in Las Vegas, but Carolina still wasn't talking. She just seemed perfectly calm, a bit like a zombie in a trance. However, even though she didn't respond, I thought she understood perfectly well what she had done.

I told her that in my entire life I had never heard of someone doing something like this. But then I added that actually I had seen something exactly like this once in a movie in which the actress Melanie Griffith had played. In exasperation, I finally even threatened Carolina with divorce, but I knew that I loved her too much for that, and that I wouldn't actually divorce her. In fact, through it all, I couldn't help but notice how pretty and sexy Carolina looked, and I had the constant feeling that I just wanted to hold her in my arms.

Realizing I wasn't getting anywhere, I decided to go out into the back yard and shoot my gun. I had a nice-looking revolver, probably a .38 caliber, which I hardly ever shot. I thought I didn't usually shoot the gun because bullets were expensive and I didn't want to waste money on them. But now, with all the money which was being wasted, it didn't seem to matter. If we were going to spend our money the way Carolina had done, I might as well get a little fun by shooting my gun.

Once in the back yard, I looked around for something to shoot at. I knew I needed to be careful not to hit the neighbor's house when I shot. Finally I saw a small tree, and I decided to shoot at it. I held my left arm horizontally in front of me and holding the gun in my right hand, I rested it on my left arm. I realized that wasn't my normal way of holding a gun, but I thought I would try something new. I focused in on a knot on the tree and fired. I then looked at the tree and saw that it looked as if I had put a hole right in the middle of the knot.

Just then Carolina followed me out of the House, and I proudly pointed out what I had done. I was glad she had come out to join me, and already the episode with the bills was beginning to seem like a distant memory. It was as if it just didn't really matter. The important thing was that she was with me, and I liked being with her.

We walked over to the tree to examine what I had done. I was surprised to see, however, not a knot on the side of the tree, but a small wooden carving of a Trojan head, about 20 centimeters high, which had been attached to the tree. I had shot a hole right into the head. Both Carolina and I were perplexed as we looked at the carving, wondering where it had come from and what it was doing there on the tree.

We didn't dally by the tree. Instead we walked to the rear of the yard where I wanted to show her something which I had found earlier. When we reached the place, I pointed out a pile of dirt and told her to listen. We both then listened to what sounded like growling and barking dogs. I told her it looked to me as if some dogs had a den there under the ground. This also seemed very strange to me, because I had never heard of dogs having a den under the ground like that.

Suddenly, not eight meters away from us, I saw a deer standing at the side of yard. Carolina saw it too. I quickly decided to shoot the deer. I aimed and fired. The gun went off, but the deer didn't fall. The deer obviously hadn't been hit. Not seeing how I could have possibly missed, I looked at the gun, moving the chamber so I could see if it had bullets in it. Then I saw what the problem was: some of the chambers were empty. I moved the chamber so it was now ready to shoot two bullets in a row.

Again I pointed at the deer, but now I began to have second thoughts. Did I really want to kill this deer? I then realized this deer had become tame from being fed corn there in the back yard. It didn't seem right for me to kill it. Carolina said to shoot it, but I couldn't. Instead I just lay down on my back on the ground, and watched as the deer walked over close to me. It looked as if I were even going to be able to pet it.

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