Dream of: 24 November 2001 (3) "Russian Government Building"

I had just arrived in Russia the day before. Unable to speak the language, I had entered a somber government building. As I walked around on the ground floor, I arrived at a ponderous door with five men stationed in front of it; two of the men I recognized as having previously met. I was now astounded by what the two men were doing: they had positioned their bodies horizontally in front of the door about a meter above the ground. They were able to maintain the painful horizontal position by pushing their feet against the door jamb on one side, and their heads against the door jamb on the other side.

I became indignant; this position was nothing less than torture. A Russian woman standing nearby was clearly in charge of this perversity. I called her out into the hallway and demanded that she allow the men to disengage themselves from the door. I screamed that I wouldn't tolerate such barbaric and uncivil torture. She acted as if it were nothing and refused to allow the men to descend. Incensed, I blurted, "You can make them walk; you can make them stand; you can make them mop all day. But not that."

I finally caused so much commotion that the woman relented. She directed the two men to descend from their excruciating positions and they did so. I walked over to the two men and expressed my satisfaction that they had been able to climb down. I also added that I hoped they wouldn't later be punished even more severely because of my actions. When I started to leave, the men asked me when I would return, I replied, "Tomorrow."

Since the following day was Monday, one of the men asked, "Monday?"

I answered, "Every day."

I wanted to assuage their fears by letting them know I intended to return here every day. They were so happy to learn this.

I then walked out of the building onto a crowded city plaza. As I crossed the plaza, casually dressed in a tee shirt, I became aware that approximately four or five teenage men were following me; I immediately became suspicious they meant to do me harm. But before I could act, two of them leaped on me and forced me to the ground on my back. In my left pocket were my billfold (which contained about $100) and identification papers; I clutched the billfold and papers as the men began riffling through my right pocket. I doubted I would be able to prevent their taking the billfold and papers from me. Perhaps some police would help me; but no help appeared to be forthcoming. I was left alone, with no help whatsoever.

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