Midnight view from our window

London. Record-breaking wind swept across England yesterday, closing bridges, train lines, and attractions. People tuned in to watch a livestream of airplanes struggling to land at Heathrow, and a gust of wind punched open the roof of an arena.

The trains started running again late last night. I know this because our flat is next to the Kilburn High Road Station, where four different trains rumble around the clock. One is light and faint like a sigh; the loudest is all judder and screech. At night, C. falls asleep encased a head-tomb of earplugs and noise-canceling headphones held fast with a scarf. But I enjoy the clatter and vibrations. There’s something soothing about drowsing next to a train station in an unfamiliar country, knowing that people are traveling at all hours to god only knows.

The noise worms its way into my dreams. Last night I dreamt I lived in a mechanical hotel that slowly dragged itself down the street. We could not leave, and we would never reach our destination. The hotel loved us too much to let us go. Every so often, new people would appear, and they were frightened when I approached because I was a ghost, haunting them. Then I dreamt that I drank perfume and had a minor role in a detective show in which none of us could remember the name of the president between Nixon and Carter.

A dream is defined as “a series of images and sensations that occur involuntarily during sleep.” Some definitions substitute visions for images, which may be a critical distinction between those who take their dreams seriously and those who do not.

I’ve always been skeptical of people who decipher their dreams or believe they are messages from some hidden realm, for they conjure the tacky aesthetics of the soothsayer or the drone of the dinner guest who talks about being present for the moment and worships rocks. My prejudice might be a knee-jerk reaction to the word involuntary—if something in my head cannot be controlled, does it belong to me? But like the trains, I’m learning to accept my dreams as a fine form of entertainment.

F.U.S.E. – Train-Trac

Dimension Intrusion | Plus 8, 1993 | Bandcamp
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