Homeless in Vancouver: My sick dream
My first reaction to sickness is to go to bed.
I firmly believe sleeping is healing. I went to bed early the night-before-last for just that reason.
My general cold had specialized; it was all about my head now—all kinds of sinus stuff and pressure and discomfort verging on pain.
Dealing with pain during waking hours is one thing—at least it keeps you awake. It’s another thing when you you actually want to go to sleep; the pain still tends to keeps you awake.
I grew tired of waiting for my head to explode—just not tired enough to fall asleep.
Even my gums hurt. It seemed to me that I was inflamed from the neck up. But I had something for that didn’t I? A bottle of Diclo-somthing-or-other, an anti-inflammatory.
I found it during the winter when I was stashing a spare blanket. I happened on a space in a large potted hedge against a wall that someone else was using to stash a bag of something. Days later it was still there, so I left my blanket there. If they came back for their little bag and needed a blanket, so be it.
They didn’t come back so I took the bag.
It contained a miscellanea of unimportant stuff and five pill bottles. I looked up the contents of each one: prescription medicines for gout and arthritis—elder stuff. One medication was prescribed for inflammation of joints and tissue and also tooth pain. I kept that bottle.
And last night I took one of the triangular little tablets.
That’s right, a tablet that might not even have been what the label said it should be, out of a bottle that likely came out of a Dumpster, thrown away after sitting in someone’s medicine cabinet for who knows how long.
Seriously. Don’t try this at home kids. And kids, even if you’re homeless you probably shouldn’t try this.
As for me, all my head pain disappeared over the next half hour—pill or placebo effect, it didn’t matter to me. I was able to drift off to sleep…
A dream of hats too big
I had a dream that I was living with Jeremy, the kid from the Zits comic strip—I think we were brothers. He came into the kitchen and wanted a cigarette.
I saw an old yellowed package on top of the fridge which still had one tailor-made in it. I said he’d have to smoke it outside. So we both went out into the back yard.
Of course it was at night.
Standing by the back door under the yellow light of an unshaded bulb I watched Jeremy light the cigarette.
A voice and a hand came out of the darkness. I don’t remember the exact word but the gist was, “You can’t do that!”
The figure belonging to the voice was all dark: dark gloves and a dark dirty overcoat. Even his clean-shaven face was dark—but that could’ve been dirty also—I’m no longer surprised when part of my “tan” come off each time I shower.
The dark fellow had glistening dark eyes and he was wearing a hat. It was more that a size too big for him and covered his head. Squares holes were cut out all around the circumference of the hat leaving thin lines of latitude and longitude to connect the top of the hat to the brim. It looked like he was wearing a short kind of wastepaper basket over his head.
It looked better than it sounds.
I followed him back out into the darkness, forgetting all about Jeremy. We reached a muddy bit of open ground, with moonlight picking highlights out of the wet tire tracks. The three of us stopped.
Could I take his picture? I wanted it for my blog.
Maybe next time he told me before he dashed off. His companion waited so I could see him for the first time.
He was a head on the ground wearing the same kind of cut-out hat, same glittering eyes. I don’t remember what he said to me just that he talked awfully tough.
He cursed and glared at me before he also dashed away, scuttling crablike on two hands mostly hidden under his head—I could just see the fingers.
That’s when I woke up.
My parkade had a mouthful of sunshine. It was the middle of the afternoon and I felt a lot better.
Nothing beats a good night’s sleep.