Festival Dreaming

I slipped into hallucinating, where she left me, lying on the grass. I don’t remember my eyes shutting or the exact moment the real fused with the unreal or when my clothes turned a stunning turquoise cobalt like the ocean. The pink and orange flags continued to ripple in the faint wind, ice creams remained tender, some mellow and inoffensive sounds were pooling from the main stage. And then a shadow hit me, a darkness and I shivered because I was cold and realised my sunglasses weren’t on my face. My eyes were closed. And when I opened them a pig, ears curled and a snout covered in snot, was hunched right over me holding a gun and a pair of handcuffs and he sneered, in a language that I understood but wasn’t any human dialect, “you had a good run”. Tasered, I jolted from it, damp with sweat, my deafening scream lost in the crowd as a silent gasp.

A rare moment when I shut my eyes and the world actually stops. When my mind stops moving and everything is still. Extraordinarily still. Nothing moves and I feel for the first time in weeks – how long had I been here? – I can just be. Everything is clear and white and motionless. Completely unmoving. Immobile. My body doesn’t move. I turn my head and noticed my legs lying dead and divorced from me to my right. When I reach out to touch them they begin to move, slowly but deliberately they slide back into the whiteness as if pulled on strings. My fingers stretch, the legs slip faster, become smaller. My brain catches up, I begin to panic.

When I lucid dream, which I do quite often when I’m in that state between sleep and awake, I only ever do two things. Fuck and eat. I can have orgasms in my lucid dreams that I can never achieve in real life. Lucid dreams are amazing because you’re in complete control. I’ve laid next to my husband and had a full blown orgy before while he’s been open mouthed drooling on the seams of his pillow. There’s always one consistency about the dreams, he is never in them. Why would I fuck my husband when I could have Brad Pitt or Clooney or both at the same time? Here there are guys all over the place, festival tanned and topless twenty-something sweethearts, who are beyond fuckable. And even if there weren’t, it’s a dream, I have the power to summon anyone I want to be here. But who shows up this time? My husband. He’s there and he’s never been there before. He smiles at me in that way he does with only his eyes and I realise I must miss him.

I have it regularly. I wake up at the exact spot I fell asleep in, at the exact same time and everything is the same. Except I’ll have this feeling of immense dread. If I’m sleeping next to someone I’ll feel for them before I even look. Feel the empty cold patch of duvet. I get up from my sleeping bag, unzip the tent but already know what I’m about to see. I step outside and look around at the other tents, the sun is up but only slightly. I open up a few, look inside open bags, clothes piled up, camping cookers, bottles, canisters, half eaten packets litter the ground. I kick them about the campsite. Everyone has gone. Every single person. I don’t know where they went. I never do. I just know they aren’t coming back and an overwhelming sadness creeps like a huge spider that hugs me from behind and covers me with its blackness.