Dream of: 04 August 1998 "Ispic"

I was in a car with several other people, traveling to a country by the name of "Ispic", a tiny little country located south of Russia, near the area of Afghanistan. I had been there once before and knew it was a poor country dominated and oppressed by Russia. I held up a map of the country and looked at it more closely. The country was roughly in the shape of a rectangle with irregular sides, twice as tall as it was wide. It was sparsely populated with only two or three cities. Modern technology was almost unknown, although a few telephones were available to make calls out of the country. I didn't even know why I had decided to go there. Germany, or even Russia, would have been safer.

Besides the normal dangers of being in the country, I had complicated the matter by bringing a large amount of cash with me. In my hand I was holding a stack of money about 20 centimeters thick. I showed the money to the others in the car, trying to decide what to do with it. I was afraid to carry so much money around with me. But I was also afraid to leave the money in the car. Perhaps I could hide it under the hood near the engine. But that idea didn't seem practical. I simply didn't know what to do.

***

I was sitting in the lobby of the hotel where I would be staying in Ispic. I felt somewhat safe here; the hotel was one of the most secure places in the country. My friends were no longer with me, and only now did I realize that two fellows who had been with me earlier were fellows with whom I had once traveled to Iran back in 1978. I hadn't seen them in all the time since then, and now I didn't know how to get in touch with them again. I wished I had gotten their phone number. Maybe I would see them again later.

I was sitting at a round table in a room filled with similar tables. Other Americans were arriving in the room and taking seats at the tables. As each small group would arrive, someone would announce the name of the state where the people came from. When I had arrived, I had been announced as "Washington." Apparently people thought I came from Washington D.C. I figured they probably also thought I was involved in politics, which suited me. If they thought I was someone important, there was less chance anyone would bother me.

Meanwhile, I was still having trouble with cash, only now it was with the local currency. The waitress had brought me a bundle of local bills and I was busily trying to put the colorful money in order. Some of the bills were bright red and seemed to be made of stiff cardboard. Other bills were of normal paper material, but in different sizes and colors. At least I wasn't as concerned here that someone might try to rob me. It even seemed it might be a good idea that other people here knew I had the money. However I still needed to find somewhere to put the money. I wondered if it might be possible to use the hotel safe.

I was sitting at a table in a slightly elevated part of the room. On the level just below me were also tables on which I could look down. I noticed a man dressed in a brown military uniform had entered with a woman, and they had taken seats at one of the tables below me. But I was amazed to see the woman lie down on her stomach on the table and lift up her dress. She invited the man to copulate with her, which he promptly attempted. However their coupling didn't go well and a strained and pained look came over the face of the woman. She certainly didn't seem to mind having sex in front of everyone, but she wasn't enjoying the act. Abruptly she broke off and pushed the man off her. Although I was watching intently, I couldn't actually see the woman's or the man's private areas. However I had seen enough to be amazed.

But my mind was mostly preoccupied by what I was going to do here in Ispic. I was definitely having second thoughts about staying here, and wondered if I should try to go somewhere else.

***

I was standing on the U.S. Grant Bridge, on the Kentucky side of the Ohio River, looking across at Portsmouth on the Ohio side. It was such a relief to be back here, to be out of Ispic. I was afraid I might have to return to Ispic, but I was so happy at least for now to be returning to Portsmouth. As soon as I got in town, I would call all my friends and family and let them know where I was. Portsmouth never looked so good.

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