Dream of: 07 August 2001 "Outstretched Arms"

I was on the Gallia County Farm, which had changed so much, it hardly seemed like the same place anymore. Leaving the Farmhouse, I walked down to Symmes Creek at the bottom of the hill in front of the Farmhouse and I continued walking west through the field, with Symmes Creek on my right and the hill on my left. I was happy to be out in the country, happy to see the trees and the wildlife around me.

Suddenly something began running along the hill beside me, passing through some crags, disappearing and then reappearing. It looked like some kind of bird, perhaps an ostrich or emu. Had my father started raising ostriches on the Farm? When I finally managed a clear view of the animal, I saw that it was a baby bird, actually two baby birds, all yellow with fluffy down. And then the mother appeared. She wasn't an ostrich at all; she looked more like a regular chicken, only she had a dark color and was clearly some kind of wild bird. I had no idea what kind of birds they were, but they certainly were pretty.

About 200 meters from the House I reached an old fence line. The creek was closer to the hill there, and I had to walk along a narrow path between the hill and the creek. As I trudged along, I noticed a huge chain lying partially submerged in the creek. I now recalled my father having told me about someone getting stuck out there, and having to be pulled out; this must be the place.

I walked a bit further, until I finally found a big rock, and I sat down. I dozed off for a moment, and when I came to, I was shocked to find that the rock had moved, carrying me backward about 10 meters into a long dark cave. I immediately jumped up and ran straight ahead toward the opening and rapidly exited. How could the rock have moved like that? Was it possible that I had sat down on the back of a turtle by mistake? The turtle explanation didn't quite ring true, but I couldn't come up with a better answer. I walked on.

Suddenly, up ahead of me, on a hill which seemed out of place for the Farm, a hill which I didn't even remember, towered some kind of statue or structure which I had never seen before. I couldn't quite make it out, but it at first reminded of a tall statue of Christ, with outstretched arms, such as the one overlooking Rio de Janeiro (or another one which I knew to exist on a hill in a South American town). But as I moved closer to the site, I saw that the structure wasn't a statue at all, but rather part of the ruins of an ancient castle, built of heavy white stones.

Now I recalled having heard my father tell me about the discovery of these ruins. The ruins, as well as the rest of the Farm, were now being visited by many people, so many in fact, that my father had begun printing up maps to the Farm and selling them for $1 each. He had told me that he was trying to find some way to capitalize on all the tourists who were flooding in.

When I reached the site of the ruins (on the other side of the creek, along the road which runs on that side of the creek), I found a large white-graveled parking area with many cars in it. Tourists were milling all about, poking here and there among the ruins. A tall circular tower was the most impressive structure. I could see now why my father was thinking of trying to make money from the tourists why, I might even be able to make money myself: I could possibly set up a concession stand right there in the parking lot, selling refreshments and souvenirs.

More than in making money, however, I was interested in the site itself; obviously the castle needed to be treated with care, to be lovingly investigated. Thus, when I saw two men walking across the parking lot, each carrying a life-sized statue in their arms, I was appalled. Obviously they were ransacking the ruins. The head of one statue was particularly striking: the hair of its head was sticking out in little spikes, like rays emanating from the sun. How shocked and dismayed I felt when the head of the statue suddenly fell off the shoulders and crashed to the ground of the white-stoned parking lot. I rushed toward the man, shouting something about the "antiquities"; I could hardly stand to see them damaged.

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