Winter Dream


(This is what I remember from a real dream I had last night)

I’m sitting at an empty bar.   It’s early evening, and it’s a bar I’m very familiar with.   It’s empty, nobody else either in front of or behind the bar.  The front door opens, and I immediately recognize my Dad as he walks in. At the same time, the bartender emerges behind the bar, and two more people walk in behind my dad.  My dad silently acknowledges me, nodding in my direction, and I can feel myself beaming, unable to suppress my happiness at seeing him.  The bartender looks at me, a puzzled expression on his face.  My dad starts talking to the bartender, telling him about his winter in Texas, when the two who came in with him take their seats on his other side.  With my dad standing between us, I recognize the other two as my mom and my oldest brother.

I remember why I’m here, why I’m at the bar.  I was supposed to meet them here, as they returned from Texas, then drive them somewhere north.   I can’t remember where but I know it’s about a two hour trip from where we are.

The conversation between the bartender and my dad pauses, and the bartender again looks at me, the same puzzled expression on his face.  Though I’ve seen him a hundred times before, it’s been a while, and it isn’t surprising that he might forget my name.

“I’m his son, Dave,” I say.  “I’m giving them a ride.”

“I know who you are,” he says, “it’s just that I didn’t expect you here so soon.”

And then it comes back to me, then I remember, that the bartender and my dad and my mom and my oldest brother are all dead.

Remembering this, I wake up.

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