There should be a yelp for places you visit in your sleep.

Do you ever have dreams so real and bizarre that you are certain you must’ve actually been somewhere that exists because there is no way that place came from your head?

Because I have them sometimes and it’s very odd, and I always want to reach out and say, “Hey, has anyone else been to that safari-style petting zoo that was deserted 100 years ago because of a radiation leak?  The one with the sad, balding wolves as big as bears who look at you with desperate eyes?  The one where the unnaturally thick and muscular 8-foot flamingoes have taken over as the dominant alpha animal?  And they stare down at you with dull, black eyes and disheveled, dirty feathers – more brown than pink – and their savage, cold, prehistoric stare tells you they are considering whether you are worth the energy they’d have to expend to kill you?  And then the traveling house shows up (a house carried around on the backs of people so you can have tea and not pay property tax) and you think about hitching a ride but you don’t because you wake up and then the rest of the day you’re haunted by the eyes of those sad, battered wolves who were left behind to be play-toys for the perverse amusement of giant flamingoes?”


Just me?

215 thoughts on “There should be a yelp for places you visit in your sleep.

Read comments below or add one.

  1. I want to go back to the zoo where I could fly by swimming in the air and I was able to see all the animals by treading air.

  2. NOT JUST YOU. Although the crazy-violent-dream-flamingo element might be just you. Omg now I want crazy-violent-dream-flamingoes.

    (Last night was the first night I went to the forgotten animal park but the traveling house shows up in my dreams all the time. ~ Jenny)

  3. I’ve never had that dream. No. Have you ever dreamed about visiting the tower of London and seeing a walking raccoon skeleton wearing a top hat?

  4. Absolutely. All except for the flamingoes, who were yellow from eating bananas instead of shrimp. Other than that, exactly the same. I have it 3 1/2 stars on Yelp. I had to subtract 1/2 star because of the excessive tipping expected.

  5. In my dreams I’m stuck at work, it’s closing time and there is that one customer who just won’t go away. Even asleep my life is frustratingly dull.

  6. Your mind must be a remarkable place to live. I KNOW I’ve been to the grocery store, and I’m certain I’ve never been naked there, so the difference between my dreams and reality is quite clear.

  7. I’ve never been there, but I’d like to leave a bad yelp review for that mall I keep getting locked in at night after closing and that stays closed all weekend.
    It is creepy and the clothes are from the 80s.

  8. I had a dream as a child of driving down this gravel road and having a picnic in the most wonderful field full of daisies and butterflies. I know exactly where this gravel road is and I drive by it as an adult almost every week. It is gated and I’ve never really been down there. Or have I? Was it a dream or is it a memory from childhood? It feels so real and I know exactly where this place should be but I’ve never had the guts to drive or walk down the gravel road to see. I wish we could share dream places. It would be nice if we found a magical place and could share it in our dreams. Although I don’t want to be stuck with Gary Lum being experimented on! Sorry. 🙂

    (EXACTLY. Those dreams we have that are so real they become real memories. ~ Jenny)

  9. I like to call the experience of dreaming of places that feel so real, “Visiting the Lands That Never Were.”

    (I like it. I call it “waking up sticky with dream stuff” which seems sort of gross now that I say it out loud. ~ Jenny)

  10. There’s a house with a weird inconsistent floor plan that claims to be my childhood home but isn’t, and it’s on a cliff next to a body of water with jutting rocks and BEARS swimming around.

    3 of 5 stars. Would go again, but I didn’t like the swimming with the bears part.

  11. That is way better than the place I go in my dreams – a swimming pool in a vividly colored room accessed only by a door in the wall. The bottom is covered in skeletons. I hate going there.

  12. OMG. YES. Like the time I was on some kind of diplomatic mission in Toronto and the office was a skyscraper where you got around by using lazy-river-style tubes on a river/canal that wrapped around the building. As I bobbed to my diplomatic appointment, I enjoyed the usual engineering. Even while it was snowing. 4/5 stars for originality. Half a stars for practicality. The lazy-river was super crowded.
    My brain is weird.

  13. I want to go back to Frobisher Island. What do you mean it doesn’t exist? That shows what you know – my family owns a house there that dates back generations and I’ve been there by plane.

  14. Yes! I keep returning to an old victorian farm house, full of dark and twisty creatures [some humans] that has narrow and twisty, inverted wooden staircases,

    [ start here

    so when you struggle to crawl up them, you actually are defying gravity because you have nothing to hold on to and you keep thinking, surely I’m going to fall flat on my back and die….

  15. I had one of those dreams last night. Well, not about a radiation-saturated petting zoo. Mine was about a country where there were no men and all the women had to wear Muslim-type head scarves and long robes and weren’t allowed to work (yeah — except for the no men part, I know there are plenty of places like this, but I have never been to any of them). Anyway, a revolution of sorts had started and there was an ad campaign showing women wearing these amazing red dresses and no scarves and looking gorgeous and my husband was so inspired by the revolution that he wanted to move there and open a strip club. All I wanted to do was get to the airport, but he kept dragging me into abandoned museums full of incredible statues of all the men who no longer existed in the country and telling me where he could install the main stage and the DJ booth for the strip club. And then I woke up, but I can’t quite shake the feeling of having been there. Kind of disturbing, really.

  16. An actual Land That Never Was that I have visited is a distorted version of my hometown, except the layout is a giant circle around a mountain that isn’t super tall, except at the center, like a point. Like an upside down spinning top, but more mountain shaped. Halfway up the mountain face is a dead-looking that can speak, and it speaks in the voice of an old friend, I don’t know if the tree is her transformed or just thinks it is.

  17. I was in Florida last week and I swear I saw some things that are equally bizarre as the ones you mentioned (and no, they didn’t include George Zimmerman or that face-eating dude). Maybe some ambitious, psychically gifted entrepreneur will invent Yelp for Dreams or a FourSquare/ Swarm type app that lets you see which of your friends has “checked in” to a place in your dreams.

  18. Did you have this dream right after you fell asleep? Because it sounds a little like a hypnagogic hallucination, which is a kind of dream that people with narcolepsy or other sleep disturbances experience. They can be extremely realistic, include auditory content, and be utterly terrifying. I used to have them when I was in my forties, and they would include sentient trains, malevolent heavy equipment, and attack helicopters. I thought they were just me being crazy until one day I happened to read an article about narcolepsy that described them in great detail, and I went “That’s it!” I finally made them go away by sleeping regularly, which I wasn’t really doing very much back in my forties.

    (I did have it right after falling asleep and I have a sleep disorder that causes me to have awake brain waves when I’m asleep. It does cause me to have super vivid dreams a lot and even some lucid dreams, but these dreams are different and I’ve had them – rarely though – since I was little. Of course, maybe I had my sleep disorder when I was little too. Hmm. ~ Jenny)

  19. Sadly, I mostly dream about work or other dull, everyday scenarios. I’d yelp 1 star for my dreams. Don’t go there, people. Save yourselves.

  20. Yes, all the time. Some are so realistic that I have to remind myself that it was a dream. My husband doesn’t remember any of his dreams and that makes me feel sad for him.

  21. I had a dream one time that I was in the jungle being hunted by ninjas. Then I woke up with a 104.7 fever and a ruptured appendix. You feeling ok? 😉

  22. I’ve never been there, but strangely kinda wanna go. I think it’s supposed to be the setting of your first Sci-Fi fiction novel.

    We’ve lost Terry Pratchett. Maybe the Universe is telling you it’s time to pick up the torch and run with it! (Figuratively run, of course. I would NEVER imply someone should literally run. THAT’S insanity.)

    Go, Jenny, go! The world is waiting!

  23. I have been in a concentration camp, as well as had my feet cut off… by ninjas! Also, shot dead in the grocery aisle, while studying the ingredients on a jar of pickles.

  24. Most of my dreams are very real and pleasant. A friend of mine constantly invents new places within the city she lives. Sadly we did not find them yet.

  25. I have crazy dreams like this every night. I couldn’t make this shit up during the day; how the hell does my brain make them up at night?!

  26. I often visit a cemetery on a river with a bluff made out of skulls brooding above the green grass, full trees, and miles of gray tombstones. Weirdly enough, it’s not scary, it’s peaceful. One of my favorite dreams, though, was when I went to a cemetery and brought home a skeleton boy. He lived with me and my husband for a while, but he was too weird for most people to accept, so we had to take him back. It still makes me a little sad.

  27. As a child I used to “visit” the backyard of an nonexistent house in my neighborhood that had a huge hill with a cave in it, and a slide down the side. Everyone always wanted to go down the humongous slide, but sometimes a giant hand would dart out from the cave and snatch you on the way down. It made the slide that much more exhilarating, knowing you could be snatched at any moment.
    I’m sort of glad I don’t go there anymore though.

  28. I have a place that’s by the ocean and sometimes there are awful tidal waves, sometimes a creepy carnival and once in awhile that house that’s evil and tries to kill me shows up. Yeah, lots of fun.

  29. The most realistic dream place I went was the lobby of a building that contained a very tasteful strip club behind translucent windows. There were extremely comfortable chairs in the lobby and lovely deer furries that were extremely soft and nice to pet. Otherwise the lobby was empty and silent. It was a nice place to take a break after flattening vampires with a steam roller. It was a bizarre mix of real and crazy,and the fact I actually had a sense of touch was highly unusual. I can’t say how the strip club was, sorry. Plus, I learned vampires get very angry when you flatten them.

  30. Ughh, I’m jealous! My only vivid dreams are ones where I dream that I have woken up in my bed and am being attacked by mask men. It leads to lots of yelling and screaming and alarmed puppies and husbands.

    All though I did have a dream once that I owned a babysitting company but I only employed NFL quarterbacks and I paid them in bacon. I half woke up in the middle of the night and thought, “Genius! I’m a genius! I will make all the money!” By morning I remembered that sleeping me makes bad choices….

  31. That’s a pretty vivid dream. I was riding on the handlebars of a bike through an Italian market last night, on my way to a college football game.

  32. Your description of the dream flamingos reminds me of Irvine Welsh’s ‘Marabou Stork Nightmares’. Just as bizarre, just as terrifying.

  33. I’m often in a much bigger version of my home that has some rooms we just forgot were there, and a spa-size bathroom, but also some lodgers in the middle floors and a haunted art gallery on the top floor.

  34. They say that if you dream of a house, it represents your subconscious mind. I really hope that’s not true. But I did dream of a place that I’m convinced exists somewhere and I look for it in other people’s travel photos. It’s a bowl shaped field with a horse running around and just beyond it is the ocean that I know is there although I can’t see it. Has anyone been there? It might be in Ireland. Or not.

  35. I have a recurring place dream – never in the same location but the same “place.” Always through a blue filter, kind of overcast. I go to a not my lake house, go on vacations with my not family, drive to my not work, have get togethers with not friends. Never places I’ve been or seen IRL. I think it is the other me. She is dreaming my world as I am dreaming hers.

  36. My dreams often take place in one of just a few imaginary locations. In the dreams, I’m usually lost, delayed, somehow having difficulty finding my way to where I need to be, even though I KNOW that I recognize where I am, from previous dreams. After years of a variations on a horrible recurring dream where I’m lost on the trails in a forest preserve, I sat down with sketch pad and pencils, sketched out a map of how it looks in my dream, and clearly marked the exit trail.

    I’ve never been stuck in those dream woods since that day.

  37. I like the idea of the house with tea and no property taxes. Maybe I’ll tag along next time you go. If the scones are good, I mean. With lemon curd and clotted cream. B/c otherwise, I’ll find my own tea shack on someone’s back:).

  38. I have a grocery store that I go to in my dreams. It has a very odd floor plan, and I assumed it only existed in my dreams. A couple of years ago I went to a grocery store in my home own that I hadn’t visited in 35 years — that’s the one!!!!!!!!

    So yeah, I think you should ask if anybody else has actually seen one of your dream places. It could happen.

  39. I don’t mind the vivid dreams so much but what I hate is having a dream where I’m angry at someone I know and then I wake up still feeling angry. I just want to call them up and give them shit for something they never did. Then I have coffee and it’s all a-ok again.

  40. I tend to semi-regularly visit an old house with many rooms that are all connected to one another. All the rooms are dark and the house has old wiring. So I have to walk to the middle of each room and wave my hand around in the air until I find the string for the light fixture so I can turn on the light,so I can find the next door to the next room so I can do it again. The rooms are interesting once I get the light on and can see what is in them. But I never find what it is I am looking for.

  41. I recently found out that the winding paths through giant brambles, wildflowers and grasses outside a ruined castle that I frequently visit in dreams is a real place. The plants aren’t actually abnormally big, but I went there when I was 4.
    So now I want to know when I visited the department store with a swimming pool and a shop where everything was made of glitter? Or the graveyard with a treehouse in? Are they real too? What about the beach where the water was sweet rather than salty and seals danced in pairs on the sand?

  42. What about when you see people in your dreams you aren’t sure are real, you feel like you know them but you can’t recognize them. I wonder if you will see them in the near future, like a dream premonition of a person. Hope that person wasn’t chasing you with a knife then, because that’s a horribly terrifying premonition

  43. I hate dreaming. I always wake up disconcerted going “what the……?!” I try as hard as I can not to remember them, but I’ve seen my mother beheaded and shot, my brother dead, and Big Bird sucked up into a tornado. Luckily I don’t dream very often.

    But I did love reading about everybody else’s dreams 🙂 I especially liked the one where you drew the map and never got lost again, whoever you are. That was nice.

  44. And this, my dear, is why you write. Because keeping all that shit contained in your head would make you mad!!!!

  45. Two nights I ago I went to an abandoned settlement on Saturn. It was a small city, it looked abandoned but it really wasn’t (I’m not sure how I knew this – the dream is getting fuzzy now) But I could see Saturn’s rings and the debris that they made of (asteroids and such) It was amazing and when we had to leave we used Saturn’s gravitational pull to sling shot us back towards earth. It was really amazing. I have epic dreams like this – they are movie like and sometimes I’m watching or sometimes I am an active participant.

  46. Yes, I have vivid dreams like that which stick with my for days and days. One recurring one that has to do with houses floating in an ocean (maybe also because of property tax issues) and trying to get from one house to another in a boat without oars. But it’s funny and not frustrating. And the people in the boat with me always change and they usually have a good sense of humor. We’ve tried all manner of things: sticking our legs in the water and kicking (not as useful as it really should be), having someone get out of the boat to push the rest of us (she got a little peeved that we were all sitting in the boat drinking beers that magically appeared in a cooler), but the best one was befriending the sea monster. We ended up going on an adventure instead of getting the other house, but he at least brought us back to the first house where we started. (Actually, now that I think about it, that was kind of a dick move on his part.)

  47. I had a similar one (in the real/fake world sense) a couple nights ago. Mine didn’t involve a zoo, but there were questionable animals involved.

  48. When I was little (as in young, not stature), when I would get sick I would have this awful re-occurring dream with a demented old timey Mickey Mouse. There was this shoe box and I would pick it up and look in a peek hole and inside would be the black and white Mickey Mouse in a little black and white room, complete with furniture, THEN all of a sudden we would switch places and I would be black and white in the little shoe box room and staring at me through the peek hole would be the bloodshot eye of Mickey Mouse. Scared the shit out of me and to this day I have a hard time with old timey Mickey Mouse (ooh I just gave myself the pee-shivers).

  49. The last really strange dream I had was one of my adult children showing up at my house drunk with shaving cream on 1/2 his face. I kept slapping him (in the dream), on the shaving cream side of his face, and asking where his wife was and shaving cream was going everywhere.

  50. I had a dream very much like that probably twenty years ago (that’s how much it stuck with me). Not a safari petting zoo, but a farm. There were giant camel looking things with patchy fur. And there was an enormous cow-like creature with a gigantic gnarled horn grown from its head.

  51. I sometimes dream of existing places, places I’ve been to, but changed in a way I can’t get out of my head and keep wondering which version is real.
    I actually want to go and visit part of the town where I grew up because to a point I am no longer sure which parts really exist and which I dreamed up.

  52. But what if creating such a Yelp revealed that lots of us had visited the same places in our dreams, leaving only the realisation that our dream life is instead an alternate reality… but then which reality is the real one?! brain explodes

  53. Did you perchance read the story I saw yesterday about the Japanese farmer who has moved back into the radiation-contaminated Fukushima area in order to take care of all the animals and pets people left behind when they evacuated (because they thought they would be allowed back in not too long)? Because your dream sounds like it might have come form something like that.

  54. Not just you. Dreams are so magnificently cruel, it’s bizarre. The worst kinds are the ones where you are actually really, really aware of the setting of your dreams but can’t for the heck of it remember it when you’re conscious. CRUEL.

  55. I’d really love to know what Freud would say about this dream. He would probably find some way to explain it so it makes sense, I don’t know how, but he would.
    They do say that you’re everyone in your dreams, maybe that helps?

  56. Nope, not just you Jenny. Your dream could have been one of my dreams: vivid and so strange that I often make some comment during the dream indicating that I know it’s obviously a dream. I have often dreamt about places I’ve never been to in real life and then find myself in them, in real life, years later…

  57. I dream I live in hotels, constantly traveling the world, my bathroom full stocked with those little shampoo bottles I so adore. I am happiest when I am a hotel or someone else’s beach house or ski chalet. It might have something to do with the fact I hate housework.

  58. I drive my car along a beautiful lushly green multi lane highway and follow it off the off-ramp, only to have it circle around underneath the overpass and come to a complete stop. When I get out of the car all confused wondering why the road justvstops, I hear several gun shots and feel the bullets whiz right past my head

  59. I’m always dreaming of locations that don’t exist in real life – but I visit them repeatedly in dreams. I also have very good friendships with Paul McCartney and Conan O’Brian.

  60. I am on meds for depression, and one of the side effects is amazingly vivid dreams, which is all well and good when they are uplifting, not so great if they are too sadly realistic. I have lots of dreams where I need to go to the bathroom, but they are the most disgusting restrooms you have ever seen in your life! Or I am in a public place and can’t go.

  61. I don’t remember most of my dreams. But on a side note, I bought my sister that hypnotizing cat sweatshirt that’s on your sidebar for her birthday. It looks even better on. Of course, she won’t wear it in public but I’ve made her promise to save all the crazy things I buy her and leave them to my daughter in her will.

  62. I’ve even returned to weird dream places, so that makes them always seem extra-real. Like, if it’s just made-up brain garbage, why would I go back?!? One of my recurring themes is one-way stairs. Yes, really. I don’t even want to know what that might mean.

  63. I have these kind of dreams on a nightly basis. Sometimes I voice record what I dreamed the night before and sometimes I try to draw the dream.

  64. I once had too much Nyquil and dreamed that I was time traveling with the tenth Doctor and went to a post-apocalyptic world where people worshipped comfy chairs and we hunted a giant mutated duck. Five stars on dream-yelp for that one!

  65. I dream about the same incredibly bizarre not-real places over and over again. And whole towns that don’t exist, but I know my way around them because I dream about them so much. I read palms (in real life) and that’s actually a pretty common thing for certain palm types (water hands in particular).

  66. Oh… that is a sad dream. I think I would be sad all day thinking about that. I had a dream last week where I saw a guy who looked familiar. I told him I thought so, and he told me, “Yeah, I was in that other dream of yours, remember?” It is like I have a secret life…

  67. My sister dreams like that. It would take her hours to tell the stories… there was one rather descriptive one with a goat that i don’t fully remember, but it was amazing and hysterical. I used to dream like that too… waking up trying to figure out if it was real or not… or getting a few hours into the day or days/weeks later and going “oh. crap. that was a dream” – that was pre-kids when I got to wake up on my own. HA! If I ever remembered them long enough to write them down, I could have become a screen writer! I called them movies 🙂 (way better than the crud people put out now for sure!)

  68. I USED to have these kinds of vivid dreams with more frequency when I was getting more sleep. And now various forms of insomnia keep me from getting into that REM state as often as I’d like. But the past was different – I once dreamed up an entirely original episode of MAS*H when I was eleven, and my alarm woke me up for school right when Klinger was about to deliver the big punch line (and my scream of frustration was loud enough to scare my parents). I also had a dream where, just for a moment, I was a thirteen-year-old boy in an orphanage run by nuns somewhere in Europe just before World War II, and stole a kiss from one of the girls my age.

    But sometimes they still come along – just last night, in fact. Something about this weird taxi scam that my uncle got suckered in by when we were all out on some family vacation and the taxi girl tried to dump us on the side of the road unless we paid up, except then I got all righteous bad-ass and was about to con her into giving us back all our money when I woke up.

  69. Years ago, before I got married, I used to dream myself into episodes of television shows and movies: I remember exploring planets as part of the away team on Star Trek, for instance. I assumed I stopped dreaming television when I grew up/got married, but apparently I just stopped remembering the dreams when I woke up. Last night my cat woke me up from a nightmare by jumping on my face and I realized I’d been dreaming I was being chased by Voldemort through a very blue-greyed-out, smoky version of Hogwarts. There was flying involved, but I could not really enjoy it as, you know, evil death incarnate was chasing me.

  70. I had two of those dreams when I was a child but I still remember to this day. The first one I was in the daycare and it was directly in the center of the block with buildings all around it and it was naptime and suddenly I’m being chased running around the entire block being chased by a giant sadistic big bird (yes Sesame Street). I am still entirely convinced that I actually went to that day care but every time I drive to area I never see any signs that there was ever a daycare there so I’m not sure if there actually was one that Is no longer there or if the entire thing is in my head.

    The second one is where I’m in my old bedroom from when I was a child and it was one of those ones with the two closet doors that you pull open that fold up as they go out and I keep seeing a light flickering fire tape light coming from underneath the door of the closet so I terrified-ly walk up to the door and slowly pull the doors open and all of a sudden the conference and play a bright light and a fitness room all the exercise machines which for some reason scares me more than the fire. So I run away and go to my parents bedroom and their sleep bed and marching up-and-down in front of their bed is a death marcher Winnie the Pooh and I just know deep inside that he is fortelling their deaths. It has been many many years since I had that dream and I remember it is physically of the night I had it and no nobody’s dead yet. Lol

  71. Yep totally that has happened to me. I was convinced that I’ve been to Tharwa, a little village outside Canberra because we stopped there for lunch and went inside the tourist shop. But when we went ‘back’ to Tharwa I realised that I only visited it in a dream and the town looks completely different from what I thought it did.

  72. I want the beautiful green dress that fit like a glove in the vintage store I dreamed about…and the figure I had in the dream. I want that, too.

  73. I once had a dream so bizarre that my brain was actually SO impressed with it’s own creativity that it created a dream version of me that spent the whole next dream telling other dream people about the fucked up dream that it had just had. (And now I can’t remember what the first dream actually was.)

  74. I have a reoccurring dream…turns out it really happened in my life and I was just too small to realize who all the characters were until MANY years later. Only…it’s not a fun dream, so I’ll just say that crazy shit goes down and there is symbolism all over the fucking place…which is pretty freaky. Bleh…now I’m all crabby and stuff. I’m gonna go read one of your posts to cheer myself up. xox Love, Carm

  75. What have you been drinking before going to bed? With dreams like this, I’m glad I don’t remember my dreams.

  76. My crazy dream of late took me to a weird blood donation facility for cash. My husband made me go there to give up my blood to pay for my dream house. Then Obama showed up to tell me how brave I was to donate blood and my husband yelled at him that I wasn’t brave….I HAD TO DO IT! Dreams are a weird place to live.

  77. Ooh no, not just you at all. I don’t ever want to visit the large old hotel I have to run around, up & down the carpeted staircases, and hiding in the lift (elevator) shafts to avoid the assassin who is after me. I don’t know why either, which is a bit unfair

  78. I wish I’d had that dream. Mostly I just have slightly weirder versions of actual places, which makes it harder to remember if it actually happened or not.

    Like all the times I either get on the wrong bus or miss my stop, and then be stuck on the bus as it travels on all sorts of adventures. I mean really, brain? It’s been nearly ten years since I’ve had to catch buses to/from school, and even then it was only because the mile between school and home was full of derros (derelict people).

  79. Can we make a blog about crazy dreams and let super creative people who can draw bring those dreams to paper? And then match up our dream worlds? I feel like the people needed to make that happen exist in this wonderful community,

    I’ve had wacko dreams for my entire life (yay, sleep disorders!). They mostly involve dragons, scary floating faces and running around houses that I’ve never seen but feel like they are my childhood home (which doesn’t exist because I moved a lot). I’ve only had 1 vivid dream repeat. But they always feel real, and it’s exhausting trying to figure out the line between dream and reality.

  80. Not me, but my housemate is constantly recounting dreams where she begins with, “We were at [insert random location] but it really wasn’t [random location].

  81. YeS….I hAVe sHaREd ThIS DreAM WiTH yoU….bEcAUSe wE ArE SoUL maTeS…..eMBraCe ThE eLDritCh hOrRor WIthIN….

    (Nooooooooooo. ~ Jenny)

  82. you’re haunted by the eyes of those sad, battered wolves who were left behind to be play-toys for the perverse amusement of giant flamingoes?

    The giant flamingoes are “US.”

    that’s just fucking sad. xx

  83. Considering that my husband and I were in Italy the other night and it was my turn to pick what we would do, then After I made my choices, he went off to play hockey ???? and I was stuck with my luggage which was an enormous black duffel bag into which he had put several sets of weights ??? and of course I had to climb an incredible number of steps to get to the blimp that would take me to our room. It actually got weirder from there. When I woke up I was pretty miffed at him.

    I figure the blimp was there because I work in Akron which is famous for our blimps. I was disappointed that I did not enjoy the ride.

    But, there were neither flamingos nor bears. Other than that, I have lots of dreams where I skate smoothly and effortlesly along everywhere i go. I find it the best way to travel.

    I do not want to know what my dreams mean!

  84. All. The. Damn. Time. I often enter a land of World War 3 where my old neighborhood (from the 80s) was made into a complex labyrinth of decks, patios, stair cases, tunnels — a community inspired by the tree houses from Swiss Family Robinson and Tarzan. We all had medieval weapons with an occasional bazooka. Just to make things interesting, there was a pack of wild, rabid dogs of whom my favorite pet, Sparky, was leader.

  85. I had a recurring dream for years that I was driving fast n the hills, coming upon those switchback turns. All of a sudden the road ahead of me would disappear and me and the car would sail off into space. I always awoke with a jolt. I decided it meant that my life felt out of control. Saved me spending a lot of money on shrinks.

  86. I think sometimes mine are a combination of places from movies or books, and then I dream-live in them in my sleep. I wake up pretty disoriented, though, haha.

    It’d be pretty freaky if someone was all YES- I KNOW THAT ZOO….

    I have asked about stuff I thought I did before, only to find out I had dreamed it and no one knew what I was talking about.

  87. Rudyard Kipling wrote a wonderful story called “The Brushwood Boy” about shared realistic dreams. I love that story, despite the rampant colonialism, because it is so very observant. It’s in the collection “The Day’s Work.”

  88. My dreams are vivid, surreal, and usually terrifying. But the one that stands out the most to me was one where my family and I were traveling through some American Midwest-looking landscape and came across a huge building in a wheat field off a deserted road. It was shaped like a giant barn but had church-like stained glass windows running around it, including a huge round one at the front of the building. The front doors were locked, so we climbed a staircase to a door at the back, about three stories up. When we walked in, we were on a large wooden platform overlooking what should have been the sanctuary. There was a giant cross on the back wall and an alter at the front. But the platform was like a dock; the whole place was filled nearly to the rafters with cold, dark water, like some giant creepy aquarium tank. There were huge flocks of ravens in the rafters overhead, but the birds were silent, and and the only sound was all this rustling of feathers. When we dived under the water (because of course we did), there were all these lifeless cats drifting around at the bottom of the tank. They were sort of suspended there like marionettes. We tried to bring them to the surface, but they reanimated, dived back under, swam down, and went back to drifting like puppets again. It was so surreal and disturbing. Oh, and the entire dream was sepia-toned, like an old photograph.

    All this to say: it’s not just you. And I really want to make an avant-garde silent movie that is just a collection of people’s surreal dreams. Your zoo dream would be perfect for it.

  89. I thought it was just me. I wake up some mornings thinking “What the hell was that all about?”

  90. Sorry, I only dream about being at work. And I would leave them a terrible review on Yelp because they only pay me for one shift when I am clearly working extra time!

  91. One time I had a dream that I was a turtle who could swim through ice. Ice turtle! It was awesome.

    I also had a very stalkerish dream once where I could travel from place to place using people’s Pinterest boards…and I ended up at a coffee house with you and a giant poodle drinking tea on the veranda. Victor was there too, but he was painted blue. There was also something about baby mountain lions, but the details are getting fuzzy with time.

  92. I sometimes wonder if the people I meet in dreams – the ones who seem really real – ARE really real, perhaps not in this particular time-space but perhaps in an alternate dimension or universe, and we’re able to hang out in the dream because dreams are magical in that metaphysical sort of way.

  93. Stop stealing my dreams. 🙂 Most common things in my dreams: dangerous houses; dangerous abandoned amusement parks; other abandoned, dangerous things.

  94. I have no idea. I never remember my dreams – ever. I don’t know if I dream at all. Your dream zoo & house sound very interesting.

  95. I have a recurring dream about traveling in a sand colored castle on top of a gargantuan tornado. Its not a sand castle, but a sand-colored castle. That is a very important detail to my subconscious, apparently. The castle is really calm and beautiful. I look out the windows at the clouds without any concern about the hell that must be occurring below my castle/tornado thingy. For that, I give it 5/5 stars.

  96. NOT just you! I’ve had some very bizarre locations that stuck with me because they were so vivid and real, and there is one house that recurs in my dreams from time to time. I’ve never been in it in real life, but I tell you what, I am ALWAYS looking for that house. It has to exist somewhere outside of my dreamscape. When I find it, I’m buying the damn thing.

  97. There is a really fascinating house that appears regularly in my dreams. It has a whole nearly-hidden sub-level with multiple dusty bedrooms and outdated bathrooms. I am convinced that one of these days I am going to walk into this house. I have seen every detail of it over and over. I know all the twists and turns in the hallways. I know where the laundry room is (next to the semi-hidden staircase to the nearly-hidden sub-level). I know that at the very back of that semi-hidden sub-level is a huge open great room with windows facing some gorgeous scenery. It’s a totally real place. I know it. I will find it someday.

    Fortunately, there aren’t any desperate-eyed wolves or huge flamingoes in it.

  98. Oh, I said earlier that I hated dreaming, but one time I dreamed I was married to Han Solo. Didn’t mind that one bit.

  99. I used to have this recurring dream about hedge mazes and to get in I had to pick an old-fashioned kerosene lantern out of this huge wall of shelves full of them. Then it was a rescue and obstacle course. I watched Labyrinth again as an adult and never have been back to that dream.

    Last night I dreamt that ghosts were telling me I didn’t have enough sleep points to do that (whatever that was, not too clear on that part).

    I dream all the time. Vivid weird dreams. Apparently that kind of dreaming has a lot to do with being clinically depressed.

  100. My brain does a great job of working lore and logic into equally as fascinating dreams, like hiding in a bedroom from an intergalactic were-mountain lion and lining the room with silver balloons and silverware because OF COURSE silver stops werewolves and therefore must work on were-mountain lions. What kind of silver? Whatever silver things you can find. I love my dreams. They are so weird and lovely and disjointed. It’s like a book I rewrite every night.

  101. Wow. That is one vivid and bizarre dream. I want to visit it. There should be an offshoot of Jurassic Park based on your dream. It’s fantastic!

  102. I often have what I call deja vu in my dreams–that I’ve been there before. Makes me wonder if these are real places and that I’ve actually been to them (maybe in another life as this one doesn’t travel).

    When I was a little kid I had this series of dreams that were all the same–me and several other people (who were adults, I have no sense of what I was [kid/adult]) were delivered to a city with big buildings-like NYC or such. We had to do a mission and the mission did vary from dream to dream sometimes we worked together but often we split up. We had to go to various locations and sometimes pick up packages or note what something looked like or deliver messages. The dreams were very vivid and involved, complete with emotions, and long. We all met back at a preordained place so we could be transported back to our lives/beds. One time one member of our group didn’t make it back in time and the people in charge were like too bad, we have to go to get you guys back. I was screaming that we couldn’t leave this guy behind and even tried to run off. I was snatched back and told we had to leave NOW or we’d be stuck there forever. I used to like having these dreams until that happened. I only had one or two more after that but my heart wasn’t in it; I was terrified I wouldn’t make back or that others would get abandoned. Somehow I felt we might actually be traveling back in time.

    Many of my dreams are long, involved, very vivid and often have epic casts of people. It is rare that I actually know someone in my dreams. Many times I am just an observer of what is going on and other times I am a participant, but I rarely feel like I am the me I am (if that makes sense).

  103. Oh, and do you remember the weird dreams/feelings Laura Ingalls described in one of her books when everyone had Fever and Ague? Like thick air, thin air, voices babbling real fast and then slowing down like molasses but never where you could hear what they are saying? As I kid I used to have those dreams right before I got sick. The hair on my neck literally stood up when I read her description of it. She got it spot on!

  104. I wish there was. I was just asking my boyfriend & brother the other about the place in my dream where almost everything was made of cardboard & glass & we hired out a vacuum as a rental vehicle. Turns out neither had been there & apparently the drugs I take are affecting my sleep?


  105. Lee- that is how I explain it. Sometimes it is like watching a movie. Other times I am the main character and see the movie through my eyes. Sometimes I know the people, sometimes not. Sometimes I know the people, but when I wake up I know they are not the same people. The same with places. Sometimes they are actually the places I dream about, sometimes I dream I am in my house, but it is not actually my true house.
    Must disturbing/memorable
    Many battle scenes I don’t need to relate. For awhile my best friend in high school was a guy. I am a fairly small girl. After the battles we were not fairing well and were going to be overtaken. He came to me with a sword and said, “Jenny, I have to die by this sword. You can do it honorably, or our enemies will get it and kill me dis honorably. He then handed me the sword, got down on all fours in front of me with his head facing me and his feet away from me. I lifted the sword, it was rather heavy, above my head. I could feel the weight. It was heavy for me. I poised there in He-man raised sword fashion and could not bring it down. I distinctly felt a push and brought the sword down on his back. I saw it open his skin about a half inch deep from shoulders to lower back, no blood though. I then did this 3 or 4 more times until I woke up and sat up straight panting.
    Why didn’t I chop off his head instead of wacking at his back? My dreams frequently are not reasonable.

    My favorite was when I had wings. They were beautiful! Have you seen a bird with iridescent wings that shimmer in the sunlight? My wings were blue and shimmered. They were huge about 2 feet above my head all the way down to dragging on the ground I felt them off my back as they furled out and I flew up into the air. It was awesome I was looking down at all the things I recognized. I so want wings…

  106. Forgot to mention that sometimes when I wake up I have to stay there for a while and think, “did I just dream that or did that actually happen and I need to remember that and write it down and put it in the calendar?”

  107. I dont think I could handle the sad eyes (I cant even make it through the aspca ads). I’ve had some very real but very oddball ones (stuck in a giant ant farm where the ants are bigger than me for instance?) but I’ve also has the terrifying in retrospect sort too. In one a friend of the family was ill in the bright sunlit back bedroom of some house that we were all worried about (friend not the house) . about the time I woke up it was to hear a friend of the family was shot in a hold up. In another i opened the front door of the house I was in and was shot in the stomach and forced to do the demands of the guy who basically took us hostage. In real life, a couple years later of course a family member bought the house (I dont recall ever being there before but the house and the view across the street were a perfect match). That one still bugs me…

  108. This kind of makes me sad that I’m one of those people that never remembers their dreams. Or glad.

    Definitely one of those.

  109. No, not just you. I have dreams, incredibly surreal, that seem so real that the first hour of being awake seems like a dream and the dream a reality I just stepped out of for a while.

  110. I have recurring “house” dreams where there is always something lurking “out there” so I lock all the doors and windows. But then I come upon a section that has been unused for generations because of the evil ghosts that stay there. Or sometimes, I hear a noise and discover a whole hidden section behind a door I hadn’t noticed before where a man, or sometimes men, are remodeling. It’s like they are building the next part of the dream and I caught them at it. Oh, and sometimes I get lost and can’t find my way back out of the house because the doors disappear or open onto completely different rooms than before. And sometimes it’s evil aliens (what did they ever do to me that I would assume they are evil) who are changing the house or “out there” lurking. Am I crazy? Or am I just in good company.

  111. After reading this post and strolling through the comments, I realize once again how Truly at Home that I am in this Tribe of Strangelings. Yes, indeedy, you are my peeps.

  112. I dreamed of a subway and it was so real. It was only a few years ago I saw a picture of the London Underground and realized that I had seen it on TV. So did I dream it or not? No way to tell now!
    I was haunted by a repeating dream when I was a child. I was driving in a local park after dark and was frightened by a shadow. I yanked the wheel to the left (always the left- was it symbolic?) The car crashed into the creek and I scrambled out and up the bank. THEN came the scary part- I had to walk home and tell my father. Not that he would have been mean, he just would have been … disappointed. And I never wanted to disappoint my Dad. That was my brother’s job!

  113. Not a stretch, for flamingos. Everyone knows that all birds are just dinosaurs with feathers, and they will turn on you if given the chance.

    (I forgot about you for a while, because life has sucked so hard. I’m glad you’re still here making me laugh. It’s nice to find you again. Thank you for being you.)

  114. For several years, I had hotel that was a recurring part of my dreams. (I was going to a lot of sf conventions at the time.) It didn’t always look the same, but I always knew it was the same hotel. I got to know my way around it, somewhat, though the dreams often involved wandering around it looking for people. (To be fair, in the pore-cell phone days that was often an activity at waking sf conventions, too.)

  115. Not just you! I’ve had dreams that are like a whole movie where I’m aware that I’m dreaming and observing myself dreaming- I have dreams of flying and my absolute favorite where I woke up soaking wet (night sweats? ) and swore that I had an out of body experience where I travelled to a parallel universe and went swimming. I think that really happened for sure!

  116. I have crazy dreams that are very plot-heavy. There’s a city I keep going back to that is so detailed and consistent I feel like I should be able to map it out, including the highways, mall layout, and slightly seedy downtown. There’s another entire setting that is supposedly my town and surrounding area, but totally isn’t. I don’t quite lucid dream, but I know these places when I’m there.

    The craziest dream, though, was the one where I was being chased by a homicidal garden gnome named Chuck. Freaking horrifying, that was, seeing that pointy red hat passing by the window of my hiding place…

  117. On a long, sleepless, cross-country bus trip (not recommended), after being awake for about 60 hours, I saw (among other things) giant flamingos by the side of the road. In Saskatchewan. Like, 12 feet tall at least. But these ones had thick, elephantine legs. And they were wearing pinstripe suits. And spats. Very classy.

  118. Wow, look at these responses. I always find it so comforting to know I’m not the only bat-sh!t crazy person out there with the weird things that happen to me. Or in your case, happen to you in your dreams haha don’t you feel better after seeing all the comments on your blog posts?

  119. I give a 5 star rating to this one place I go to. It’s a very shaded area of a forest near a cave and my dead aunt lives there. She always gives me a bag of gummy bears and warns me that the yellow ones are laced with LSD. She was a bit of a hippy in real life before she passed so I honestly believe that we are having a “visit” of sorts.

  120. The disheveled flamingos remind me of the city pidgeons I would encounter early mornings, obviously hung over from imbibing in second hand… Ugh “beverage chunks” left on the sidewalks at night… Sad but true. If they were 6′ tall, omg!
    How about yogi bear leading an army of sword carrying skeletons down your driveway and surrounding your house? Tap tap stare into the windows… Scared the holy shit out of me!!!
    Damn bear… Lol =/

  121. I remember interactions with people more than places from dreams. Those can be very vivid. It’s always a little odd when you’re upset with someone for what they did in your dream. I’ve had whole relationships with dream versions of crushes and actual guys I’ve gone out with. It’s hard to keep dream stuff and real life stuff straight sometimes.

  122. I always had kickarse dreams, probably still do, but since having kids I don’t remember them any more. I figure my sleep patterns have been irreversibly fucked. I remember them occasionally, but usually it’s just *pass out… *wake up. I miss them, they were usually good for a laugh in the morning!

  123. Oh God, yes. My husband tells me not to tell anyone because I will scare the straights. I love my dreams. Every night they are full of everything and nothing and something unimaginable, but worth every second and I can remember them all.

  124. I lucid dream a lot. I get stuck in my dream ( which isn’t too crazy) but I am terrified of dreams because you’re trapped in your head and I think being trapped in my head would make me go crazy.

    So I wake up but I didn’t really wake up. I realize I’m still asleep so I wake up… buy not really.. again. I have spent many nights stuck in my own dreams. It’s terrifying.

  125. Let me chime in with: No, you’re not the only one.

    However from asking around I think I’m the only man who dreams he is a woman and married to Gene Shalit.

    Dreaming I’m a woman doesn’t bother me at all, which is good because being married to Gene Shalit is off the Disturb-O-Meter.

  126. Please continue to track your dreams on this blog? They sound great.

    The travelling house is a post-modern version of the gypsy lifestyle, perhaps?

  127. Sounds like you’re talking about the Chernoble Involuntary Park (and Wildlife Preserve)……

  128. You know…I do amateur dream interpretation. This could be a lot of fun. Just sayin’.

  129. The travelling house makes me think of Baba Yaga’s house… relax, it’s just a big wooden chicken.

    I have fewer extremely vivid dreams now than before I got my CPAP machine — apparently something about waking up 70 times a night while in REM state makes them go into your long-term memory. I had a whole series where I was in a particular city but on waking up the details were all wrong. Like buildings from my flat Long Island hometown showing up on the hills of San Francisco. A lot of the time I was lost and couldn’t find my way back to meet someone. Sometimes it would morph into falling-elevator dreams — oddly that stopped when was in a waking-world rattling elevator and told my friend “Nah, not worth worrying about. I’ve had this dream a million times — I just hold onto the roof and do a somersault when we land.” Never had that nightmare again.

    I consider myself lucky — for decades my mother used to dream that she was tied lengthwise on a railroad track with the train running over her head. She’d wake up panicked. This may have had something to do with her railroad-conductor father dying after an accident when someone decoupled the engine without releasing the steam. Or maybe it was my father’s snoring.

  130. yeah, I am pregnant and have found that my usual bizarre dreams have morphed into slightly more scary; crazy, what the hell did I eat before bed kind of dreams… Oh hormones…

  131. I come from a generations of dream-writers. They’d write their dreams out and keep it safe so they could read it out to each other and share their thoughts on them.

    There’s also this book my grandma gifted me on my birthday. It has all these dreams written like short stories that her granddad and his sisters wrote and eventually published.

    I have my vivid moments too… elephant-dragons…slain in a flying ball game…being chased by a beast who just wants to eat me…. and then waking up and the sadness never leaves me for the day…

    It’s definitely not just you Jenny 🙂

  132. Jenny I hope you get to meet this girl sometime, because I think you two would hit it off right away.

    Re-creating movie scenes with dead mice: 6th grader on taxidermy hobby
    “Many 12-year-olds would list spending time with animals among their hobbies. But probably not like Mackenzie McCarty.The grade six student from Philadelphia finds dead rodents at the side of the road, or buys them frozen from a pet shop. Then she stuffs them, dresses them, and places them in pastoral scenes.”

  133. There is a whole other small town that is named the same as the small town I live outside, and while roughly the same as the real one, has significant differences. I’ve been there so many times that I find myself picturing the dream town instead of the real one when trying to explain where something is to someone.

  134. I was being chased down a hotel corridor by Hannibal Lecter’s minions because Hannibal himself couldn’t be bothered. I was running so fast that my feet barely touched the carpet. When I got to the stairwell, I flew down the whole flight at once. I wish I could do that in real life but I don’t want to be eaten.
    meow meow meow

  135. I take a lot of meds. One in particular takes in everything that happened that day and tries to make it into a movie except everything is out of context. Some days I can’t wait to see the movie. I am also a flier in some of my happier dreams and consider seeing family and dogs that have passed in my dreams as visitations, like they are checking in on me. I climbed Mt. Everest with 2 deceased dogs while dressed in my regular outdoor clothes and thought, “what’s the big deal?”

  136. This sounds kind of like every episode I’ve seen of those creepy Teletubbies. The hollow, black, soulless eyes… Less flamingo, though.

  137. I haven’t been to the zoo there, but I have been to the shopping mall. No traveling house came to pick up though – I had to run out on foot which made for a very stressful dream. So I’m totally for rating that place on Yelp.

  138. Teletubbies are scary creepy!!! Anyway, you are fine and normal, it’s the drugs that make up your nightly adventures.

  139. hey my name is nikki and im 12 yrs old and my mom bought your book and i probably wasn’t supposed to read it, but your book is the most amazing/funny/relatable book ever. i read your blog all the time and i can’t wait to read your second book.

    p.s. i think its a great idea to have GPSs programmed with landmarks instead of street names and addresses.

  140. I was wondering if that was you I saw there!

    Seriously, not only do I go to weird, “no way that came out of me because I am just not that imaginative”, places, but I sometimes make return visits. Then I wake up and I’m all confused, because I think “oh, I went back to that place where I’d been before” and then I have to remind myself that it wasn’t real the first time I was there either.

    I tried to draw all the different locations I’d visited in some of these dream-locations, but I haven’t dreamt a good overall map yet.

  141. Definitely not just you. I have always had return visits to vividly amazing places in my dreams. I really believe there is something like reincarnation going on here. They are too real to be “figments” of our unconscious imagination!

  142. I end up visiting my old high school a lot. They’ve changed a few things. The vast decaying Soviet-era tower blocks protruding from a 45-degree slope of mud; the basements full of rat-people I keep blundering into instead of my Esperanto class; the killbot patrols and the gigantic whale skull made of clouds hanging in the sky above the 400-acre playing fields – all new additions. It’s an improvement, frankly.

  143. Not sure if I’ve had quite the same thing, but I do have dreams that I wish were real events when
    I wake up.
    Like one time – and probably only gamer nerds will be able to follow this – I had a dream that I was a new recruit for AVALANCHE, the rebel group in Final Fantasy VII, and I was kicking Shinra’s ass alongside Barrett Wallace. (And then there was an odd cross-over between that and some characters from EastEnders, but that’s not the point…)

  144. I sometimes have dreams that are so real they are on par with those weird encounters people think are alien abductions. Yay. They’re not always fun.

  145. NOT JUST YOU. How about a giant, multi-level ballroom with purple carpeting and trees growing indoor everywhere…

  146. I definitely want to get back to that abandoned town where I flew between skyscrapers on a whale. SERIOUS. Best dream ever.

  147. I believe that these dreams are stories that need to be told. I think maybe Animal Farm and Charlotte’s Web need a new addition to the talking animal genre. I’d read about dead-eyed flamingos and moving houses.

  148. I still have a map of the neighborhood, with labeled streets and intersections, that lead to the weird gated commune/community/compound thing where I have lived in many dreams. Sometimes I was the gardener, other times I was a farmer or an artist and once the community lawyer… These places aren’t real but if I ever stumble upon them I will be able to navigate them no problem.

    For the past 20 or so years, I’ve also had very involved dreams about my old hometown. The houses and streets are the same, only the whole town is now down in a valley. For some reason the town took a vote and everyone decided to make the buildings and houses watertight and then flood the valley. Now we travel down the streets with our scuba tanks and submarines. Everyone built a floating platform above their house or business as a boat dock/helipad. The school buses were the Yellow Submarine. Some people did some sort of genetic modification to have gills and tails. And somehow we kept it a secret from pretty much everyone because there were no tourists.

  149. It’s not just you at all. I call these sorts of dreams my brain being an asshole. Because why else would it torture me with such incomprehensibly bizarre scenarios totally unrelated to my own thoughts night after night?

  150. I take small doses of melatonin for insomnia once in a while and always have vivid but vaguely (or definitely disturbing) dreams when I take it. One of the more memorable ones had me outside hearing someone screaming for help “help help I’m on a rocket!” I looked up to see a human being standing on a rocket that is going up up up in the air. In the dream I was consumed with sadness and horror and compassion for that person, who was clearly going to die. This dream freaked me out so much I avoided melatonin for about two months.

    That said, I’ve had some awesome dreams too where I met old friends or beloved relatives who have passed. Or had really cool experiences. Of course I don’t remember them half as well. But I try to avoid the melatonin…it always seems to mess things up with some kind of bad vibe.

  151. My son just told me today that he dreamed I had my hand cut-off because it was too beautiful. Not creepy at all. Pretty sure I need to limit his sugar intake at night.

  152. OOooh trust me you’re not alone with the weird dreams lately! I’ve even called cousins the next day, because they were in the dreams, to discuss with them WTH? Or texted a long lost friend, recently shown up, because they were in the dream…what makes it weirder is the fact that they were having the EXACT SAME dream….and we saw each other in the dreams. So …yeah…WTH?????

  153. No, not me. So between us its just you. . . . Well don’t look so sad. . . . let me put my house down and we can go in and have a spot of tea and talk about OK?

  154. I don’t know about the petting zoo, but Gaiman’s Sandman comic mentioned the “room patrol,” which was a room carried around in the Dreaming. 🙂

  155. Are you sure they were flamingos? This is why I ask:

    I cannot account for your poor battered wolves, unless they are some species of dire wolf that went bald from the stress of dealing with malicious giant flamingos.

    For many years I used to have recurring dreams about a town. I rarely visited the same place twice in this town, but I always knew it was the same place, to the extent of knowing that if I went around the corner I would encounter a coffee shop where I had visited last time. I have not had a dream of this type for some time, but I’m sure the town is still there.

    (Holy crap. #5 looks just like it. And apparently they lived in my state millions of years ago. That is so insane. ~ Jenny)

  156. In the mid-70s I lived in central Florida on the coast south of Cape Canaveral (Merritt Island), and I swear I’ve seen your zoo on a dirt road off the highway between Cocoa and Orlando.

    Most of the dreams I remember come in 2 types. The first type is the usual “sometime-in-the-middle-of-the-night” dreams that you may or may not remember when you wake up in the morning. The story in those dreams differs but every one involves me either being able to manipulate gravity (so I can fall slowly or jump high or float or be so heavy as to be immovable) or being able to actually fly because I have super-realistic big-ass wings attached to my shoulder blades. The flying ones are hard because the wings drag on the ground when folded so I have to hold them up when walking or they get all dirty. Bathing with wings can only be done in a swimming pool and showering is almost useless because you can’t fit in a normal shower. Plus, my abs get sore keeping me standing upright against the weight of my wings on my back and holding my legs up while flying. I always wake up tired and with a really sore chest from using those muscles to flap my wings all night.

    The other type is a “just-fell-asleep-and-immediately-started-dreaming” dream that seems relatively normal in content only with a single touch of strange (like my thumbs are on the wrong side of my hands or a sentient motorcycle). I’m always the only person in those dreams and every one always ends violently enough to wake me up (like, the motorcycle committed suicide while taking me for a ride). Those dreams only last about 5 minutes, and I always remember them, but when they wake me up I just go back to sleep.

  157. Well, there was the time Angela Lansbury, H R Puffenstuff and I were flying around on the Never Ending Story dragon…

    My dreams include everything: color, sound, touch, taste, and smell.
    Thank the gods smell was not included the time we were buffetted by the gale storm winds issuing from my dog’s rear end. Sometimes i think my brain hates me.

  158. I share the feeling some way, what happens to me is that my dreams some times are so real, that when I wake up i feel like that really happened, I’m mad with whom I was in the dream, and so on, until I understand it wasn’t true, it was just a dream hahahaah


  159. Weirdest dream I ever had involved being in a graveyard at midnight with my parents, playing a kind of ring-toss-style game where we were throwing objects at the area in front of a headstone and trying to land them inside the large rectangle (marked in glow tape) that showed where the actual hole had been before it was filled in … then the scene abruptly shifted to a laboratory setting and i was a GoBot trying to give Rosemary’s Baby the super-plague because if he got that and lived, he’d be immune to all the other plagues in the world except for one contained in a small village in East Africa. The dream kept shifting back and forth between these two realities like changing channels on the TV. I am not sure what this says about my sanity or emotional stability.

    On the plus side, it’s the only time I’ve ever laughed my ass off for the first ten minutes of being awake, because all I could think was “Seriously, WTF??!!??”

  160. Usually when I get those dreams I spend the whole dream wandering around (being rather upset and afraid) wondering why no one else seems to think the situation is odd. Like, hey y’all, I might be wrong here, but last time I checked giant flamingos were usually of the plastic variety, and whose idea was it to come to this irradiated petting zoo? Like, was there a brochure? I think I’d have vetoed a trip that involved seeing sad wolves oppressed…I get enough sadness in real life. No? This was the plan all along? Well I guess it’s ok then…

  161. I have had lucid dreams since I was small. By now I have worked out a map of my “dream world” and can visit different places as I fall asleep, but new places are always cropping up. When I have dreams set in the “new places” it often takes me a little while to figure out where the new dreams fit in to the “map” so that I can start visiting them at will. I also have been visiting some of the places for so many years that the stories going on there are like a series of novels And I know the “people” there very well. There are also a few traveling entities like your tea house that have a sort of circuit of movement through the different dreamscapes that is somewhat, but not entirely, predictable. Like, I have a vague idea where to find them at any time, but it is never guaranteed….When asleep I have memories of the different dreams I have had in all of these places and will often visit them to see if anything has changed, or to see if I can change things myself, like maybe try to free the wolves from the flamingos kind of thing. This may work out, or I may end up making things worse.
    Whether awake or asleep, I am often confused about whether certain memories are from my dreams, or from waking life.
    If only there were a way for scientists to study our dreams with a view to what this level of subconscious organization means – it would be fascinating.

  162. Agreed Ellie. It usually never works for me either. I often get frustrated and think, “This is my goddam dream. Why can’t I fix this?” But thing change in ways I never expected, or anticipated when I start to meddle. It’s like I am trying to outsmart myself, or something – a mental self-wrestling match.

  163. hmm I didn’t even need to read this post (though i’m glad I did) to agree. But yes, just yes. Also please write stories or novels about your dreams. 😀

  164. If it makes you feel any better, I had a dream the other night, and when I woke up from it at 2 am I REALLY wanted to remember it because it was cool, so I picked up my phone and jotted down some notes and went to bed. When I woke up the next morning to read the clues it said:

    Dead hookers shoes

    I still have no idea what any of it means.

  165. My dreams are so real (often w/ celebrities) they follow me around most of the day. Recently I was helping Christina Applegate rework a very avante guard version of Sweet Charity. In the end I would co-star, making my Broadway debut! When I wake I always feel like I’m really friends with Christina or Liam, or Tom.

  166. There are a couple of places I regularly go in my dreams–a particular amusement park, and that one mall I always end up in when I’m in a bad situation (hiding from a kidnapper behind a Ronald McDonald statue or desperately seeking medical help from sunglasses salesmen after my boyfriend got me bitten by a water moccasin, for instance). Several months ago, I had a very involved dream that featured Frankenstein’s monster, a mummy, Viking dwarves, and a Chupacabra, over the course of which I was myself (female, 20s), an old man on a plane, and simultaneously Jonathan Harper and Victor Frankenstein. But, it being dream-world and all, none of that seemed particularly odd. What threw me off was that I didn’t recognize the mall I was in (I suppose having fully armed, disgruntled dwarves glaring at me while I was trying to fit into their miniature elevator didn’t help with my unease).

  167. I have entire cities that I have created in my dreams. I visit them more regularly than I would like… But I know where everything is. There’s an old section of the city, and a new one. There’s also a marketplace that I know intimately. I’ve never been there… it’s so weird. I visit this place many times, sometimes once a month.

  168. LMAO, It’s funny reading that because after I have a bizarre dream, I think of all of the weird things in the dream that is comparable to what your dream consisted of, and I think, “I need to write all this stuff down!” And by the time I do, I can’t even remember anything the dream is even loosely affiliated with. Props!

  169. When I was four or five years old, I dreamt about an impossible library – it was two stories high, roughly as wide as a walk-in closet, and had a series of tiny staircases leading to the top. I distinctly remember realizing that the library was impossible because one of the staircases was a narrow half-moon shape with carvings on the sides and no railings, and no one would have a staircase like that because too many people would fall and hurt themselves.

    Twenty-three years later (four months ago) I moved to the city I’m in now, and as I was exploring antique shops I walked into that exact place, down to the carvings on the side of the impossible half-moon staircase. Only it was a bookstore, not a library. I got chills and had to sit down for a moment…but once the incredible sense of vertigo passed, I got unbearably excited. I’m taking it as a sign that I’m exactly where I’m meant to be. ^_^

  170. Wait — were polar bears the waiters in the travelling house, serving tea? No? Then no, I have no idea where you are talking about.

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