Dream of: 14 November 2005 "Aborted Trip"

I looked out the window of the bus I was riding. I was in a city which at first I couldn't identify, but when I noticed the people seemed to be oriental (some women had long black ponytails) I concluded I was in Hong Kong. The bus even passed a bay and I could see buildings on the far shore. I thought that must be mainland China.

When the bus traveled on, however, beyond the city into the country, I remembered where I really was: I was heading from Portsmouth to Cincinnati. In Cincinnati I planned to catch a plane to Europe.

I recalled more details now. I had been living in Portsmouth for a few months, and I simply hadn't been able to stand it any longer. I had to get out of there. I reflected that I seemed to have a need to occasionally travel to Europe. On the spur of the moment, without any planning, I had simply decided to fly to Europe. I had simply boarded the bus and headed off.

I thought about my car, which I had parked in a parking garage in Cincinnati. I hoped it would be safe there. I would probably be gone for about a month, and I would have tickets when I returned. I thought I would pay the tickets with my American Express card. I hoped the card wouldn't be cancelled while I was in Europe. Maybe I should write American Express and tell them where I was living in Europe. Hopefully American Express wouldn't cancel the card simply because I was in Europe. Fortunately I also had a couple more credit cards.

Suddenly, however, I realized I wasn't thinking clearly: I hadn't parked the car in Cincinnati. I had left it on the street in Portsmouth. The car was a Cadillac, an older model with fins. I could clearly visualize it in my mind. I had left it sitting on Gallia Street in Portsmouth, close to downtown. When I looked out the window of the bus, I was surprised to see that we were passing through Portsmouth, on Gallia Street, right in the area where I had left the car. My father had an office on this same block on Gallia Street. We had passed the office and I regretted I hadn't looked up in time to see if anyone were in the office. But I did see my car. I hoped it would be alright there. My father would probably notice it and wonder what had happened to me.

As the bus turned at the corner of the street, we passed a Goodwill store on our right. I could see a number of paintings hung in the window. I looked to see if any were paint-by-number paintings. I would sometimes buy those at Goodwill. But I quickly turned my eyes away; I didn't have time for such foolishness now.

My thoughts returned to how abruptly I had left. I had been practicing law, but I didn't have anything pending at the moment, so leaving the law practice shouldn't be a problem. I had been renting a small office from Leland. I thought how Leland and his wife Susan would wonder what had happened to me. I had left a few things behind in the office, nothing of importance. I wondered if they would rent the office to me again when I returned.

As the bus traveled on out of town, I returned to my thoughts. I was dying to get to Europe. The compulsion had simply overwhelmed me. I didn't even have a ticket. I would have to visit a travel agency in Cincinnati and buy one. I would probably go to Germany.

Suddenly, however, I realized I had a problem. I had forgotten about my mother. She was in poor health. She might only live 5-6 more months. She was the reason I had been in Portsmouth. I couldn't simply run off to Europe and leave her. As badly as I wanted to go, I simply couldn't leave my mother behind when she needed me. I would have to abort the whole trip. Cancellation wouldn't be hard since I hadn't even bought my ticket yet. I would simply get off the bus in Cincinnati and board another bus back to Portsmouth.

The bus passed through another town. We passed by a jewelry store so close, we seemed to be going through the store. As the bus stopped for a moment, I observed a fellow (probably in his early 20s) dressed in black pants and a black tee shirt looking at some earrings in the store. The clerk (a thin woman probably in her 50s) wasn't paying attention to the fellow. He had several pair of earrings in his hand and he was just about to stick them in his pocket.

Through the bus window I got the clerk's attention and with motions of my hand I told her to look in the man's pocket. As the bus pulled away, I watched her walk over to the man. She pulled back his long hair and found a pair of earnings wrapped around his ear. Then she reached in his pocket and pulled out another pair. I had the feeling she wasn't going to have him arrested. That was too bad - I though he should be prosecuted.

As I was watching, I had turned all the way around in my seat and I mumbled some words out loud. Sitting behind me was a pretty woman (probably in her early 20s). She smiled and said something back to me. I spoke back to her. She seemed so friendly, maybe I would strike up a conversation with her.

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