Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Pink rabbits & phantasmagoric flying dreams

(Part one)

It was interesting to hear last week about Amy’s uplifting dream of us flying together over Hailey’s 4th of July Fireworks, because I had a similarly powerful dream regarding sweet Amy back at our old Petit Lake family cabin. I haven’t been up to Petit for ten years, but recently went on Google Maps and flew around the woodsy neighborhood a bit. Something, I’ve always admired about my father, Rainier Rudolph; is that whenever he bought a house, it was always adjacent to some woods, giving us young rapscallions a healthy place to scamper around to release our energy.


In the dream, I awoke on Saturday daybreak and went outside, barefoot in red pajamas to collect an Idaho Statesman from our snowy driveway. In reality, we lived on the sleepy dead end, but in the dream, cars could now connect into the forest. In fact, it was a bustling thoroughfare now; for some elaborate racecars were speeding into the hilly woods up to Alice Lake, and one or two old jalopies were pulling out to return to civilization. Even though it was snowy, I was excited to be back, and to show Amy my treasured childhood summer home. We thought we should take an encompassing stroll around the Lake, while waiting for the newspaper. So, still barefoot, we walked east, to see several children shouting with squeals of glee, preparing to sleigh down our cabin hill. It was a magnificent morning for sledding, and we trudged up the knoll a way, to be closer to the enjoyment. Halfway to the pinnacle, the children easily maneuvered around us, in figure-eights on their toy-sleds. While we reached the top, we saw several more houses. The furthest yard was filled with dozens of other children, enjoying some festive event. The first few modern homes were quiet and dim, but the ancient house was where the action was. As we approached, we saw a great cauldron of stew boiling over a pit in the front yard, while the happy children continued to dart about, every which-way. It was a four-story grey house, and I tried to picture it from my past. I remembered it being an old house, even back when I was young. Then in the hub of activity, we spied the property owner. She was somebody, I knew from decades ago, but she hadn’t aged much. She had some wild grey curly hair around the fringes of her head, and everyone there respected her with high regard. Trying to be polite, I asked in a curious voice, above the merry din, “How old is this house?” She was elusive with her answer, but smiled, and then kindly but sternly, grabbed me around the forearms, saying, “I remember your kind Max; I had to straighten you and your brother out a few times, from some of the trouble you caused out here in the woods!” I thought that this wasn’t necessarily true, but perhaps there was a small element to what she spoke. We briefly conversed some more, then I asked what her name was. She spoke a name so peculiar that I knew instantly Amy and I would be incapable of remembering it.

To be continued…


Pink Rabbits & Phantasmagoric Flying Dreams - Part two

(Continued from last week)

It was as if the strange woman had cast a spell upon her obscure name, rendering it impossible to recollect, although, I do remember her long singular name had four “i’s” in it. She released us and we trotted a little further down the wet and rocky Petit Lake trail. As the snow melted in the late morning forest sun, I came upon two more houses that I remembered from childhood: the last one an old blue Victorian, facing Toxaway Loop. I vaguely recalled some sort of strange happenings there too, but couldn’t penetrate the decades-old memories to put my finger on it yet.


Suddenly, as I spun around in the wet mud, I realized that I was able to fly again. I grabbed a hold of Amy and we flew feet-first with our bare toes sticking out straight ahead of us. Remarkably, the fact that we were able to fly felt quite natural, as it usually does with such triumphant flying dreams. This incubated a thought that I would like to twist our bodies to face forward and fly like Superman and Superwoman to show the Petit-Lakeians what their prodigal son had learned, while gone ten years on vast Indiana Jones adventures. They will love this! -I thought in a powerful inner celebration, and they will talk about it for decades! The plan was for Amy and me to float slow-motion past the children’s clamor and their holiday cauldron, while giving them the broadest smiles we could possibly manage. However, when we tried to spin about, to fly face-first like Superheroes, something went off kilter with our inner gyroscopes. A queer anti-gravity force led us to a higher altitude, and unexpectedly we were soaring in fast motion clouds, directly behind four space pilots and four astronauts. Those high-flyers were all relying on spacesuits and other backup technologies, so we laughed at them, as we took wing on mind-power alone! It all felt quite fearless, but for some reason, Amy and I were unable to switch our inner gears back down to earth, no matter how hard we tried. Then finally Amy showed me the secret – that is, we could regulate our altitude by taking deep breaths, just like with scuba diving in Petit Lake.


Abruptly awakening to present day reality, I lay there motionless for several minutes, lightly buzzing about the powerful flying dream. Then, as the dreamscape partially melted, it occurred to me that those uncanny houses in the woods were never actually there, but rather had been places imagn’d from childhood dreams. Vivid places I occasionally revisited over the decades, where many events had taken shape and form – enough to record a small history deep in my subconscious. These made me wonder if this all was merely in my mind, or are our minds potentially more powerful than what our instructors taught, in earlier schools of thought? When we dream, do we somehow mysteriously connect to otherworldly dimensions, where ongoing ethereal events persist in parallel fashions?


Then I realized that I had been sleeping on a sofa with a cushion that Amy had specially embroidered for me. She emblazoned it with some cute animals, most notably some pink rabbits dancing on the pillow, which had been pressing softly against my dreamy head…


About the author: Once in the middle of an incredibly lucid dream Jim Banholzer tried to leave a phone voicemail to the waking world. He strongly felt like it went through, but when he awoke to check his messages he was disappointed to find massive nothingness.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Compound Whippersnappers

Compound whippersnappers

I must have still had some spelunking left in these aged bones; because when Lana showed up unexpectedly to visit for Hailey’s 4th of July celebration, I escorted her to the Mint, and from an underground room there felt compelled to reveal to her the secret subterranean chamber that webs beneath Hailey’s Main Street. As we spryly passed by the remnants of an old Chinese opium den, I joked that this would make a fitting place to set up a closed meeting to relax the fossils who are paranoid about shifting the airport to a safer position.
While showing Lana the underground door that exits into the Hailey Museum, suddenly some penny-candy dropped from one of the overhead vault openings and we realized that the popular parade had begun. We hustled back to Bruce’s basement, where an undercover Allen & Co. agent assisted us out of the black hole and over to a prime vantage point above the Mint’s balcony. Although we were surrounded by old friends; Lana appeared nervous and every time a firecrackhttp://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,940747,00.htmler popped, she jumped an inch closer. Soon we were holding hands and some of those strong sentimental feelings I had toward her started racing back.

At the high point of the procession, an unscripted fight broke out between two members of the shoot-out gang. Since they had already performed earlier, this made it difficult momentarily to distinguish what was real and what was fiction; until a noble mechanic single-handedly dispersed the actual fisticuffs, moments before local authorities arrived at the surreal scene.

After the heat of this explosiveness, that evening, Lana and I strolled out Quigley to witness the fireworks. Although it lasted barely twenty minutes, it was a fine presentation, and there were a few sizzlers I hadn’t seen since Love American Style. Equally notable was the small number of walkers who had hiked this short distance, as even through the weather was fine; most of the rocket watchers had driven over in a second slow parade.

The next day Lana flew out of town like a blissful comet. Meanwhile, I had been thinking quite a lot about Amy and the inspiring way she interacts with people and pets. For some reason though, we’d been having a difficult time reconnecting. During a long squawk around the library, my cockatiel’s Sheila and Joe had become entangled in the landline, yanking the wire from the wall. Since the walls are 18-inch thick cement, it requires a special drill before I can fix the phone. In addition, the solid cave-like properties of the house creates weak cell reception; so the only time I can reach Amy is when I’m out walking Bud. For the last two weeks, we’ve been mostly misconnecting. Maybe I should suggest that we meet together in person sometime again soon, perhaps for a nice slice at McClain’s.

About the author: After waking from last winter’s long hibernation, Jim Banholzer realized that he had incurred a mild case of Dunlap’s disease; whereby his belly had ‘done lapped’ clean over his belt. For treatment, he skipped pizza for forty long days; and now, since the belt has returned to its old healthy notch, he’s strongly dreaming about a scrumptious pepperoni / pesto pie.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Further map puzzles plus two lovebirds

After the children emerged from the depths of Chalk Cave, we placed the series of collected map parchments on the pantechnivan lift-gate and blew the old dust off. Half of the children crowded there with me, while the other half stood with Amy under the ancient desert arch and pored over the rare Salinger book with great interest.

I knew these maps well, but even after studying them into the wee hours many nights, I still had a hard time fathoming how the ancient ones were the most accurate; especially when considering that the ground here expanded with a new lava flow, a mere 27 years ago. How in the world could the oldest maps in the group, hundreds of years old, have known about this future event and been delineated with such fine matching detail? Could it have something to do with the ancient arch and what local indigenous people sometimes whisper about? After all, there are transformative wormholes in the universe; so why not one here in our stunning Picabo desert, next to the future airport?

Meanwhile, I had more pressing earthly needs to attend to. As Amy and I caravanned separately back to the Wood River Valley, I sensed that she would want to know where my relationship with Lana stood. Amy already knew that I much preferred love over war; but now I would have to gently break her news that I’m polyamorous. As I parked the van in the drive, I saw that my cockatiel Sheila was still outside, pecking at the living room window. This was puzzling to the max, because twenty minutes ago, while emerging from Timmermans dead spot; I saw that Amy had texted me about Sheila’s great escape and return. When I pulled the door open, Sheila streaked straight for the cage, where there was another cockatiel locked inside. Wait a minute now - which one was the real Sheila and which the pseudo-Sheila? The two birds resembled each other so well that they could have functioned as each other’s Doppelgangers. Fortunately, I had methodically trained Sheila to respond to my prompts in meaningful anagrams. So when I called out “Drunken Sailors!” from inside the cage the real Sheila immediately squawked back “Darkens oil runs!”

At this juncture, I unlatched the birdcage to let the two Sheila’s become better acquainted, while swapping out the bottom lining for some fresh newspaper. Soon, the birds made it clear that the second Sheila was not another female and that they would make a good mating couple.

As I ambled over to the map table to grab a large magnifying glass, I noticed that the real Sheila’s song was less discordant than usual, which made me believe that it would be a nice change, to listen to her fulfilled melody enhance the library background. Then, as I set down to study the esoteric map information closer, Amy rang my phone and I asked her if she had any good names for a strutting male cockatiel.

About the Author: Jim Banholzer is mostly a quiet hermit; but he could surprise you with an occasional glint of hope.

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