Dream of: 25 October 1997 "Looking For A House"

I was in the leafy, little village of Patriot, Ohio, sitting in the front seat of a car which my father was driving. We were trying to find a house which we were thinking of buying. The title to the house was tied up in a probate action, and we thought we might be able to buy out the interest of each of the heirs at a low price, thereby obtaining title to the house. We drove slowly by the house – a white frame two-story affair – only two or three houses down from the House in Patriot (the home of my maternal grandparents when I was a child).

At the moment, my father and I were primarily concerned with locating all the heirs who had an interest in the house which we wanted to buy. We were still unsure exactly where they all lived. I was holding a white paper which contained a typewritten list of the names and addresses of the heirs, some of whom appeared to have already died.

When I noticed a mailman walking along the street in front of the house, I called to him. He was a stout, middle-aged man with black hair. He walked up to the window and I began talking with him about the house in which we were interested. He was friendly at first, and even got into the car and rode for a ways with us. But when he finally realized what my father and I were trying to do, he became rather agitated, as if we were doing something improper. He obviously felt that it was immoral for people to be making money by speculating such as we were doing. He even brought up the stock market, complaining about the Standard and Poors 500 futures market. He ranted that he was "a hard-working man," obviously resenting that we could make money so easily and that he had to work so hard for his.

When we finally let him back out in front of the house, I didn't think he would help us any further. Nevertheless, as he stood outside my passenger window, I pointed to a name on my list, and asked him if he knew the person. Although I had some question in my mind about whether the man on the list was still alive, the mailman said he knew where the man lived, right up the street, on the last corner in town. However, when I asked for the address, the mailman balked. I had expected as much: I suspected that mailmen weren't supposed to give out the addresses of people. The mailman reiterated, however, that that house would be easy to find since it was the last one in town.

My father began driving again. He turned left at the corner, apparently to leave town. Since Patriot was so small, we had already transitioned into an area where the road passed through fields with high crops on both sides of us. But I didn't think we had yet finished with our search, and I brought to my father's attention that we still needed to try to find the house which the mailman had described. My father agreed and at the end of the block he made a sharp left turn in order to circle back around. He didn't even stop when he turned, and due to the high crops, it was impossible to see if any cars were coming. Fortunately there was no traffic and we continued on without incident. But I immediately pointed out to my father that he had made a reckless turn and that we could have been killed. He seemed to realize his mistake.

This little road we were on, on the back side of Patriot, was wooded on both sides. No houses. It was a pleasant day and my father and I were no longer sitting inside the car, but on the front hood, in upraised seats, something like in a convertible, only that we were sitting higher. My father mentioned that I needed to roll the front passenger window all the way down. I did so.

We suddenly saw a young fellow up ahead riding on a small motorcycle. When the fellow tried to turn around in the middle of the road, the motorcycle turned over, and the fellow tumbled off onto his back in the middle of the road. When we passed him, the fellow was just lying on his back staring straight up into the sky. Since he appeared unharmed, we didn't stop. We passed yet another fellow who was also riding a motorcycle. He was so close to my side when we passed, I could actually reach out and touch him.

We had only traveled a short distance when I was surprised to see some buildings on my right. I thought maybe we had already reached the house of the man for whom we were searching, although it seemed that we still needed to turn another corner first, to get back into the main area of Patriot. Looking closer at the buildings, I realized a whole new subdivision had been built on the outskirts of Patriot. I even saw the steeple of a church in the midst of the buildings. I quickly realized the buildings were strange, because they all appeared to be made of adobe, like something from the southwestern United States, not like something from southeastern Ohio.

Soon my father and I reached a section where all the buildings were in miniature, looking like regular buildings, but standing only about a meter tall. It took me a moment to realize I was looking at a little amusement area which had been built for children. Dozens of lovely miniature buildings were in the fanciful park. It looked like a lovely place for children. However, I quickly noticed that no children were inside the amusement area, and I saw the reason: the price of admission was exorbitant. A sign listed the prices and they were outrageous, especially since I realized the people living in this area of town all appeared to be Hispanic, and Hispanics in general had less money. Dozens of black-haired Hispanics, all neatly dressed in their Sunday clothing, were walking on the sidewalk beside the road, but none seemed to be going to the little park. Only a couple children were right inside the gates of the park; but they appeared to be with two adults who were there to sell tickets.

I was amazed that so many Hispanics could have settled into the Patriot area without my knowledge. If this many Hispanics were living all the way north in southeastern Ohio, they must be taking over the whole country.

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