One reason why I love sleeping is how my dreams are always interesting. There are days when I wake up tired, as though I lived a whole different life in my sleep. Most days, I would get to be in that sweet spot between sleep and wake, where I am aware that I am dreaming, and that I am about to wake up from a dream. That spot is trippy and I often feel like I’m drunk as hell. I’d be awake but disoriented shortly after, and would have about three to five minutes to take note of what happened in my dream before the details start slipping away.
Last night, I’m sure I was elsewhere – somewhere far and cold, needing two layers of clothing – but for some reason, my university cafeteria was also there. Gonzaga cafeteria. It didn’t quite look like the one in real life, but to me, it was Gonzaga cafeteria. I went in and lined up for food. When it was almost my turn to get food from the young lunch lady, she started singing Amy Winehouse’s Love Is A Losing Game. I sang along. She smiled at me.
There was chicken in a deep casserole. I don’t know what the dish was, but I said I wanted some of that and that I wanted the thigh and leg part, please and thank you. She was about to put the thigh and leg part on my plate when an old woman from the kitchen told her not to. She seemed to be of authority, because the lunch lady obeyed. I asked why. She told me things that didn’t make sense to me – I don’t remember them anymore.
I was bummed out and told the old lady I won’t eat anymore, but I still want to understand why I can’t have the leg and thigh part of the chicken. And so she went to my side of the counter, and we went to a place right beside where you get food.
It was boxy and small. There were other people seated. They knew the old lady. They asked her how she was, to which she answered “same old – husbandless and full of self-loathing.” She looked up the wall, and that’s when I realized we were in some kind of mausoleum.
She told me that the young ones like me shouldn’t just get whatever they want. I still didn’t get it. I wanted her to explain it to me more, and she told me she will if I got her thesis from UP Diliman. What a random thing to ask. Why would she need her thesis at her age? I told her sure, I might be able to pass by it tomorrow.
What I remember next is how my family, whom in no way resemble my family in real life, was surprised that I got close with the old lady, they made a surprise visit in her house. The old lady was caught by surprise, she slipped. There was a lone nail standing upright on the ground, to which a part of her body landed on – perhaps her nape or something. Before she passed, she thanked me for giving her what she wanted for the longest time.
And then I woke up.
Something good ended for me today. I feel the same way as I would not getting the thigh part chicken – except I understand why.
The Daily Prompt: Gone