A few nights ago I had a very vivid dream wherein I bought a vintage motorcycle. It was a Harley I think, from the 1970s. It had pistachio colored accents, like that of my Kitchen Aid mixer, and the recently restored chrome was so shiny I could see in it the reflection of the trees I whizzed by as I cut through the forest down the winding mountain road. I was speeding up and down the rolling hills at a blistering pace, but I felt totally in control and smiled as the wind whipped my face. Not once did I feel like I was going to crash. Though I had never ridden a motorcycle until that very moment, I felt like I had found a home of sorts on the back of that bike. When I reached my destination, wherever that was, I revved the engine for my family, who had been waiting for me and was surprised to see their boring daughter/sister/granddaughter/wife on the back of a roaring motorcycle.
Cut to a later part of the dream, and I'm no longer on the bike, but am looking for it. I had grabbed my helmet with the intention of going for a ride, when I discovered the spot I had parked my bike was now empty. That's when the phone rang. I answered. It was Alex.
"Lora, you've got to come get me. There's been an accident."
"What? Are you alright? Where are you?"
"I'm fine. I'm on the mountain. Your bike is dead, though."
"You took my bike?"
"Yeah, I wanted to take it for a ride. I wiped out when turning a corner, though. I stopped but the bike kept going straight on into the side of the mountain. She's gone. Smashed to smithereens."
He said this as nonchalantly as if he were describing the weather. I slammed down the phone and screamed obscenities and threw random objects against random walls. I got into my car, put the heavy bike helmet in the passenger seat, and headed up the mountain to rescue my no-good brother.
When I woke up, the sun was just rising, shining through the wooden shades, giving the room an amber glow. I felt windblown and the airiness of a recent adrenaline rush, like I had just stepped off the bike. I recounted the details of my dream and chuckled to myself because I knew that if I really had bought a motorcycle and if Alex really were still alive, it would have played out just like that.
About a month ago, my friend’s grandfather died. He was in his eighties and had been ill, so his end was not a surprise, but she was sti...