Here’s a dream from last night.
I’m attending a reception for a graduate seminar on Roman Polanski. I’m with Polish cinema students in a casual backyard setting, setting up a long table and chairs as more attendees arrive. I’m nude. I don’t belong to the group and didn’t attend the seminar, but I’m allowed here. I have a leather-bound legal pad, a pen and my phone, which are nearly identical to those belonging to the students. Their materials are piled around the lawn as people free their hands to help. I hold my materials as I want to take notes on the students’ thoughts so I can learn from the seminar I missed.
A student engages me in sharing his thoughts. I write them on the leather cover of my notebook, thinking to save paper for later. His thoughts are well formed and expressed, though he’s distracted by attaching an umbrella to the table. His colleagues suggest he give up as it’s not needed, as I wait to hear more opinions. Finally, as the group settles down, I try to keep the conversation focused on Polanski, without interfering in their more relaxed camaraderie. I’m impressed by what they say when they return to the topic. I note these observations: “Who knew the old man would have thirty more films in him after the scandal?” “He’s more respected in academia than commercially.”
The yard is surrounded by a wooden fence covered in vines. It sits behind a mid-century modern house, which I’m told is owned by Polanski and run as a center for studying his work. The reception will move indoors and I’m invited along. However, I feel awkward about my nudity and misplace my phone. Many of the students have brought chargers and backpacks. I’m impressed by their forethought though I’m glad for my decision to attend nude. It’s getting dark and I wonder how I’ll return to my hotel barefoot, nude and without money. I worry about finding my phone. Then, I woke myself and realized this was a dream. I didn’t need to find my phone. Relieved, I closed my eyes and returned to the dream.
The reception is moving indoors. I find a large shirt of mine and put in on, struggling with the buttons. I demurely turn my back on the others as I dress. I go inside and look around. The décor is very swinging seventies with a sunken living room, study area and hot tub. I want to explore but I’m invited into the hot tub. Others are nude so I take off my shirt and join them. An older woman who knows the place addresses those of us in the tub. We’re approached by a ghostly cat moving as it sits in a plastic canister. The woman tells us this is just a cat, nothing unusual. I’m intrigued by the creature.
It’s time to go. Someone offers to call me a cab. I agree, though aware that I have no money. I really don’t know where I am. I’m taken to a dispatch office, where I’m offered a choice of champagne or coffee. I take the former from a fountain. My nudity seems more unusual in the office, though the dispatch agent is kind and solicitous. I wonder if I should sneak off and try to find my way to the hotel. Or maybe I can go to my room once we arrive to retrieve the fare.