Forced Out in the Snow
I am in an old apartment building, a kind of squatter’s place. We (myself and several other tenants) have been informed of the destruction of the building, and must leave as soon as possible. I go through packing what I can, mostly grabbing my computer stuff and some souvenirs. I get as much into my car as I can – it is at the edge of a store parking lot. It’s parked up parallel to a fence, in a deserted corner where it will be safe. I add several boxes of my things between the car and the fence, so they will be out of sight. I must now go to the grocery store and get groceries.
In the grocery store, I move around filling my caddy. At one point I am looking for Dr. Pepper, but can’t seem to find it. The only bottles I see are very tall ones – slim as a regular bottle, but about 3 times as tall. I think how silly it is to package them that way, as they won’t fit into a fridge. I head off to get some tresse (braided bread) and out of the corner of my eye, I see my oldest daughter. I try to move in her direction, but the store is crowded and I lose sight of her.
I find myself in the entry way of the store, my caddy full of groceries, unpaid for. I have no idea how I got here, I was just trying to catch up with my daughter. I look around, and think of going back into the store – I still want the tresse. But the entry into the grocery area would set off an alarm. I stand for a moment wondering what to do. I could just tell a cashier the mistake and pay, but there are lines and lines of people checking out and it would be like cutting in front of them. I finally decide to just leave the caddy and groceries there in the entry area.
I leave the store, and I see snow – tons of snow. It is all over the parking lot, all over cars and in the free spaces, drifts have piled up. It’s not a very clean snow, either, I can see some areas have already seen a snow plow, but much still needs clearing. I need to get to the far end of the lot, and am glad I don’t have the groceries to bother with.
One row in the parking area, along the edge, has no cars, so I start walking down that part. There is a strange kind of electronic roller that is trying to clear off the snow in the parking spots. It’s like one of those automatic lawnmowers or vacuum cleaners, but for the snow. I have to be careful to avoid it, it’s not huge, but big enough to knock me over. I watch for a moment in a kind of fascinated amusement. It keeps plowing over the snow, clearing a little, but obviously was not made for this much snow, and all it really seems to be doing is compacting it.
Finally I make it across the parking lot – where my car should be is a huge pile of dirty snow, as if all the scraped snow from the bigger snow plow had been piled in that corner. At first i think with some consternation that they have buried my car and my boxes with dirty parking lot snow. But as I look closer, I realize with a kind of horror that the piled snow is too uneven – my car isn’t under it! I look around digging at areas, trying to find the boxes, but they are gone too.
A man in uniform comes over and asks me what I’m doing. I ask him where my car is, my boxes, my personal things. He tells me they needed a place for the snow so they moved it all to a dumping area for abandoned vehicles. He is apologetic, saying they didn’t think it belonged to anyone. I am furious at first, but then all the anger goes out and I just feel cold, scared and abandoned.
I ask him where the car was taken. He gives me a kind of map. I take it and study it, trying to think of public transportation and which train and bus lines I need to take to get there. It is confusing, I am tired, I feel defeated.
Not a very happy dream, for sure. A lot about being forced out, having to move, things going wrong. Probably some residual anxiety getting expressed about my current living situation. I need to sell the house, I can no longer afford to live her on what I get from disability, and I know that what savings I’ve been living off of are diminishing. I know I’ll be able to sell it before that runs out, but still, there is anxiety involved. The missing or lost car is a common theme in my dreams, as well as trying to figure out my way on transportation.
The grocery store is one I visit from time to time when I go into town. The layout was the same up until I started searching for my daughter, then it changed and became confusing. More separation anxiety?
Setting: Apartment building, parking lot, grocery store
People: myself, generic people in the apartments, my daughter, a crowd of people at the store, a man in uniform
Props: car, Dr. Pepper bottles, boxes of personal items, grocery cart, groceries, snow cleaner, dirty snow
Snippets of thought: being forced out – keeping only what I need – losing sight of my daughter – forgetting to pay – staying honest – car gone again, how will I find my way