Wednesday, October 17, 2007

a permanent state of birthdays

Every morning I sit on the third bench of the tunnel from around 6:49 until I catch the 7:05 BART train to South San Francisco. Every morning, as I hear my train approaching I stand waiting for the doors to open of the same car, where I will inevitably sit and read my book in the same seat I always do. Without fail, I cross the path of the same man. He's older, seemingly slightly defeated by life, but somewhat content. He's exiting the car, I'm entering. I look up from my book, and his attention is averted from his PDA as the doors open. We cross paths. After a week or so of this same exact encounter, we began to nod and give hints of smiles in recognition of our regular meeting. No words have ever been necessary. With such an uneventful encounter, I have never paid much attention to the whole thing.

Last night I had a dream I was walking around the city, there were so many people. More than usual. It was crowded. I seemed to be moving in the opposite direction of everyone. I went down the stairs of the BART station to get away from the crowd. I decided to get on a train, and the Regular BART Guy was getting off the train. And he spoke! "You, again." That's all he said. In my dream I was shocked because his voice was not at all how I expected it to be. Next thing I knew I was someplace else in my dream; somewhere involving a girl selling "Snicks" who I was pretty upset with because I desperately wanted her to just call them Snickers.

I woke up. I went through my regular morning routine. As I waited for the 7:05 train, I read my book as usual. I saw the Regular BART Guy as the doors opened. As I gave him my routine nod, HE SPOKE! I immediately remembered that he had spoken in my dream, and now here he was the next morning saying, "Hello again." What?! I stood there in shock for a moment, sitting down only when the train lurched to a halt. I can't even describe the feeling of that moment. I was completely taken aback. I have seen this man every morning for six weeks on my way to work, and he has never uttered a word! Then I go have a dream that he speaks, and he speaks to me the next morning! And it's what he said that really threw me for a loop. "Hello, again!" AGAIN! It was like he knew that I had a dream about our ritual encounter, and was simply playing with my mind.

After spending the train ride occupied with the thought of such random happenings, I laughed that I was as affected by this as I was. Randomness is simply that. Random. But, I do think that man can read minds.

1 comment:

molly said...

dude, emily, i don't think thats a random thing. i LOVE this story.


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