Last night I dreamt I was in Vienna. Since I haven’t been in Vienna before I can’t really speak to how authentic my dream was. For some reason Vienna looks a lot like San Francisco in my dreams. There are older, fancier buildings and fewer people speaking English in my dream version of Vienna than the real San Francisco, but for some reason my subconscious is making a connection between Vienna and SF. Maybe deep, deep in my mind there is some little spark connecting my childhood fascination with Vienna sausages and Rice-a-Roni. (This reference will not make sense to most people, but my mind is trying to tell me something and I need to get to the bottom of it.)
So here is the dream: I arrive in Vienna by train. I hop on a little street car and meet a family of Americans. You can’t get away from those damn Americans even in Vienna, they are everywhere in my dreams. I talk to the family a little bit, pretend I know more about Vienna than I do. (I don’t tell them that I only thought about Vienna as the capital of little hot dogs in a can until a few years ago.) I take a picture of a large white building (it looks a lot like the TransAmerica Building in SF) with my iPhone. I get off the trolley at the next stop and head underground to get on a subway. Here is where the dream gets a bit confusing, I buy a ticket, but remember that I left my luggage somewhere. I head upstairs and start looking for my luggage where I left it in a big library/transit station. It is odd that I would have left the luggage there because I have not been in this building before. I stroll around looking for my luggage and when I say stroll, I mean I am lollygagging. This is where my dream brain gets itself into trouble. I would never set my luggage down and just walk away and if I did, I would be frantically running around like Tom Cruise. (Watch any Tom Cruise movie, at some point Tom must tell the director, “We need a shot of me running because I am really fast.”) Vienna may seem like a safe place in my dreams, but in reality there are Russian gangsters all over the place. So instead of dashing around looking for my stuff, I just walk around like I have all day. Eventually I end up talking to some bearded guy working at a North Face store (located inside the library/transit station) and telling him that I should probably cancel my credit cards. He is confused because I am speaking English and he is Viennese and speaks just a touch of the Mother Tongue. He finally understands what I need and then I wake up.
What an unsatisfying dream. First off, I don’t get to see much of Vienna. I would hope my brain could create a better Vienna than that, but I guess not. Second, I never get to cancel my credit cards. I would like to have the opportunity to close that loop so I don’t spend the rest of the day wondering if someone is out there spending my money. Third, why can’t North Face hire a more helpful employee? I understand that my dream lacks a little verisimilitude, but come on North Face, why can’t you hire an American to help me out in my dream?
I do believe that dreams hold importance, but I’m not so sure about this one. I have been thinking more about my trip now that it is less than 60 days away so I guess my brain is trying to tell me to be careful. Maybe my brain thinks it is unwise to wander around Europe for a month, but that is where my brain is wrong. It is very wise and it is time my brain got on board and understood that Vienna is a safe city even if it is filled with Russian gangsters.
I knew this must be out there. Cue Tom Cruise running.