I have a boogyman that appears as a cameo in all my dreamscapes. I do not know exactly when that trouble began, but I do know it’s first appearances strangely resembled the Hamburgler, that feisty fool hardy escape artist and nemesis of Ronald McDonald.
I was eight and ten years younger than my brothers, so bedtime for me came hours earlier than theirs when I started school. I would begrudgingly climb the stairs to my room, while the TV was playing in the living room downstairs. The sound of whatever was on the tube totally took my focus and I could not sleep. Once i did, I would dream I’m still awake and annoyed by that TV and whatever show I was missing. I would dream how I would go downstairs pleading for the volume to be lowered, and on my way back up to my room, I could see the boogeyman, as the Hamburgler, waiting in my slightly ajar closet, in the reflection of my dresser’s mirror. Thus, trapping me in the staircase choosing between going back downstairs or just facing the boogey. I had this dream often, and when I chose to face the boogey, he often kidnapped me and escaped with me in tow, out the window and down the wall and into his waiting milk truck.
I have never figured out the significance of a milk truck especially since I cannot remember seeing a milk truck home deliver, but weirdly I do remember the milkbox we left in the driveway..
As we were leaving and driving by the house, my parents would be on the front porch, just waving theatrically. This recurring dream, which recurred often with slightly different variations, was made more surreal by an animated cartoon reality. This reality was like being inside an animated cartoon, all bright colors, full of optimism.
Optimism makes dreams that much more terrifying…
Well on this morning, I had my first dream that occurred on this property. I revisit a variety of dreamscapes based on my past and imagination. I visit each often, know I am dreaming and recognize the current scape immediately. But this morning I didn’t recognize my property and studio/home at first, I think because I had never dreamed it before.
I think it gives me great peace being here, generally. On five acres of wooded land, it gets really dark at night. Most people comment that they would be scared out here if they found themselves outside alone at night, but I do not get spooked often when I am. I do confess, I sometimes panic outside when I hear the animals, like the children inSteven King’s cornfield, crashing through the undergrowth, and run like a panicked child in a dark hallway to my door.
About a year after I bought this place and moved here, I found that some hunter had erected a deer blind in the trees not 200 feet from my back door. It was so well camouflaged and I didn’t know how long it had been there, since I had taken a make-shift one down from the same location a year previous. It spooked me to know some guy was shooting deer right there, a grammar school pitch, from my screen door.
Since that discovery, I have changed the locks and keep them locked on the gate. Between my neighbors tight scrutiny of strangers and the barbed wire fencing, The place is fortified and safe to even a doorbell. All visitors must call.
After all, I am not afraid of the animals that might be dragging there feet in my woods, just the crazy monsters that shoot them.
But this morning I shook myself awake from a scene where I was scanning the upper branches of my extensive back yard and I spied a suspicious dark mass high in the trees. As I looked straight back into my woods at this form, I slowly moved forward and used my camera to bring it into focus. As it became clear, I slowly realized and saw my boogey, dressed in a black cape, nestled in a deer blind comfortably and very still, looking directly at me.
Now this boogey is sometimes in the room with me at night, often in the closets of my childhood bedroom. I even sometimes suffer a sleep paralysis that leaves me vulnerable to it’s haunts, and usually that is during day-time naps. He just waits, just out of focus. Creepy but predictable.
At night my dreams are sometimes at a renaissance fair or campground in which I live in my bus or a broken down booth at a fair that strangely resembles the original Largo site in Florida. These particular dreams are very disturbing with completely different stressors, than a simple boogey man can unload, but a visit from it makes the dream that much more crazy.
Sometimes I dream I am on a recognizable and lovely beach I have never visited before in real life. It is next to a beautiful desert with a perfect dirt bike or horse path, depending on the time period of the dream, and it runs along the edge of a long green berm leading to the water. If I go to the water and happen to allow myself to see the boogey in the landscape somewhere, the beautiful sea becomes murky water.
During other dreams on other nights, I am at the “rock stars mansion” that encloses a huge swimming pool with beautiful people in it, and a long spiral staircase through the center. As wonderful as that mansion is, I simply cannot relax, the pool runs like a river of concrete that leads to a long and winding murky river with creatures swimming and lurking in the shadows as I struggle to stay on a raft or piece of wood. Sometimes the beautiful people will start showing up dead and bobbing in the water… just like the scene in Pet Cemetery where the buried and desecrated Native American bodies start bobbing in the unfinished in-ground pool in the new residents’ back yard. Who needs a boogey in that movie? That was one messed up movie. I can only guess what new material the remake, released this month, is gonna give me.
Sometimes I am just on that staircase in my old house looking at the reflection in my dresser’s mirror trying to make a decision. It’s all terrifying.
The boogey can show in any of these scapes, but this is the first I dreamed in my woods, in my nice safe woods, with the boogey high in the branches with a perfect view into my screen door.
And in his black cape and unhealthy glow, I realized once again that it appeared as the Hamburgler,. What does that mean, for frank’s sake? What does it mean to have a boogey Hamburgler stalking the home of an avowed vegetarian? Often, as a child, he would kidnap me and take me away, my parents waving from the front porch, but to where would he take me if I didn’t wake up? Would he make me his slave to work as a drug dealer or mule, not sampling the goods I helped provide to his insatiable needs?
As usual, I did not stick around to find out, and shook myself awake. And tried to forget, but couldn’t.