Yesterday I read a very cool dream report by a gifted dreamer named Janet. In her dream, she is working in an ice cream lab, mixing up new flavors. Though she doesn't normally eat a lot of ice cream, in the dream she is delighted by how each batch she produces gets better and better, Finally, she is sampling a scrummy batch of pink ice cream. A friendly supervisor now appears and tells her that if she is willing to show up for the early shift for four days running, she'll get a free trip to "Brasil". Janet is excited by the prospect of an adventure in a country she's never visited, but hesitates when she realizes that the early shift is from 6:00 AM to 12:00 PM. She's not much of a morning person - and who will look after the kids?
I was really juiced by this dream report. For starters, "Brasil" (which the dreamer knew was spelled the Brazilian way) is a magic kingdom for me. I had big adventures in Brazil many years ago; the fantasy movie "Brazil" is a longtime favorite; and I recall that "Hy Brazil" is a magical island in the mists in the mythic geography of the old Celtic voyage tales, or immrama.
Then again, I've noticed that when I start to dream about food preparation, that's a sign that a creative project is cooking up. I was especially excited by the rules laid down by the friendly supervisor" in Janet's dream. Work the morning shift from 6 to 12 for just four days, and you're off.
I informed Janet right away that I intended to borrow her "friendly supervisor" and follow her rules. Starting today, I would make the commitment work the early shift, starting at 6:00 AM, to see what I could mix up of a novel I've been playing with - off and on - over several years. While on shift, I would stay OFF-line, letting office stuff, online courses I am leading, and other things wait until I had clocked out.
I stayed up rather late on Sunday night, reading a curious and engrossing novel called The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters. Nonetheless, I did not set the alarm, since I prefer to wake up naturally, and have succeeded in so doing for almost all of my adult life no matter what hour I need to get to an airport or - as in this case - to my desk. When I opened my eyes, this morning, I saw it was 5:45 AM. Perfect. Time to shower and dress, walk the dog, and journal my overnight dreams before getting on with the early shift. In my principal dream, I am staying at a hospital because my wife is having a baby. Delivery will take precisely four days. This would be a wickedly long period for a literal baby but it was abundantly clear that this was not the kind of baby that was coming through. It was a very happy and energizing dream, that introduced some wonderful characters and plot elements, and I woke with the sense of big things coming through.
I completed my first shift today. There was a fair amount of perspiration, as well as inspiration, involved. I expanded and mixed drafts and sketches from over quite a period of time, including journal notes I wrote during my recent creative writing retreat ("Writing as a State of Conscious Dreaming") when I had the high pleasure of watching a group of marvelously creative people play-act an unfinished scene from the novel in question, following my partial script and casting selections. We'll see whether I am anywhere closer to "Brasil" after four days on the early shift.