It was a basement to begin with. Not many details at first, but I was certainly in a dangerous situation. That much was clear. I turned around to find a corpse lying on the ground behind me.
Half-human. As in not a real corpse. As in a zombie.
It’s funny how scary this theme was when it first entered my dreams. Years ago I would run from the problems, but I couldn’t run. Later, I could run in big bounding leaps, and with free movement I had enough confidence to turn around and start swinging my fists at the undead.
Later still I performed the task like it was my job. The dream was still scary, but I understood the situation and accepted it. I knew what had to be done–fight, defend, flee, secure–I knew all the steps to defend myself against the undead scourge.
I’m a pro in my zombie dreams now. The moment I saw that corpse in front of me, I knew what was coming. I turned around again, and there it was at the end of the basement corridor, head hanging down slightly, arms outstretched. I charged the thing through the door at the end of the hall and knocked it over. I kicked the head a few times, then started slamming the heavy door against it until I was satisfied. One down.
When I went upstairs, I realized I was at my old house at Calman Place. Shitty. Lots of windows at low levels and a big glass door in the side of the livingroom. Not exactly a good defensive position. I looked outside and expected darkness and chaos, but life on Calman Pl. continued as usual. I saw my neighbors across the street and down the road. The light was that dimmed dream light, but there was nothing out of the ordinary going on outside.
This was actually a setback for me. I had to start defending the house without alerting anyone else. It never occurred to me to warn my neighbors. I didn’t think they’d listen. I went to work, first going back down to the basement and looking for windows to board, then returning upstairs to find my mom in the garage. She was inflating a bike tire.
The garage door was open slightly, so I rolled under it and got a better look at the street. Nothing. Dim light, no zombies. For a second I wondered if the story would shift. Were there going to be more zombies?
I went back into the garage and shut the door the rest of the way. When I looked through the garage door windows, though, I saw the couple across the street gathering their kids hurriedly and running indoors. “This is it”, I thought. “It’s going to happen after all.”
As if on cue, I saw a corpse climbing the driveway rather quickly. This wasn’t a Romero zombie. I latched the garage door and turned back to my Mom. “Lock the back door!” I yelled at her, referring to the glass door in the living room. Once there were a few zombies they’d break through it, but for now locking it was our best shot.
She nodded, but instead of complying, she started pumping the bike tire faster. “I said, LOCK THE BACK FUCKING
DOOR!” I screamed at her, but she looked at me worried, still pumping the tire, and replied “I’m doing this as fast as I can!” I gave up trying to explain anything to her and instead dove through the garage back into the house, where I saw the undead minion already pulling the back door open. I grabbed it and fought, but it already had a fast grip on it. I let the door slide open a little more and I kicked the thing off. I closed the door and latched it.
It was too late now, though. I knew I had to move.
I had one of those spatial-temporal dream warps, and the next scene had me and a calm-looking attractive black girl (she reminded me of Melanie, a girl who was in my international living group when I went to Spain 8 years ago) going somewhere in an SUV. She was driving. It looked like we were going through the Pocono Woodland Lakes where my girlfriend Katherine lives. We passed by a street that looked like Katherine’s, and soon after hit a block. There was another vehicle turned sideways in the road.
The black girl looked up at me. Her demeanor was matter-of-fact and still quite calm. I told her to make a K-turn. There was no way I was going to give up the vehicle in the middle of the woods. She turned and started in the other direction.
I feel like there was a lot more to this dream, but there wasn’t anything as clear as the two situations above.
What’s great about these dreams is that I practically feel energized when I wake up from them. It’s like living an action movie. There’s no sweat on the sheets or overwhelming relief when I wake up. It’s more like: “If I can handle an apocalyptic zombie world, I can sure as HELL handle another day at work!”
It’s an interesting analog to problem-solving. Even in the face of flesh-eaters, I work to act logically and prepare as best I can to defend myself against the scourge. Instead of panicking and running full-bore from a scary situation, I face it now with gritted teeth.