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Dream: 8.14.18

August 16, 2018

I’m carpooling with 2 middle-aged women in the early morning (much earlier than I would normally be awake, never mind doing things and being social), on our way to an educational conference-thing. During the drive, I recollect I was mailed an information packet which I forgot at home.

When we arrive, we split up.

I collect a new packet at the registration table. It’s 7:30 a.m., and the first events don’t begin until 8. I have time to grab coffee in the cafeteria, maybe a pastry, refresh my sense of why I’m here by reading the packet.

Except at the cafeteria, I’m hailed by a man sitting at a long table filled with people in some type of uniform. He says he wants me to be the lone woman in his group. I’m certain I see women at the table; also, I’m not a woman, but do I want to make an announcement to a tableful of strangers, still half asleep? No. So I sit with them.

He seems like he wants to know about me, but he doesn’t ask anything. I drink my coffee, eat my food, try to wake up. Wish I was sitting at an empty table, alone, reading my packet.


At some point, I’m aware that I was recruited to come to this thing. That someone wanted me specifically. Whatever the topic is isn’t within my usual cluster of interests, but it’s intriguing to be pursued.


At a different point, I enter an arched doorway, like for an abbey. No other people are around, the place is quiet, the air cool, the light filtered.

I think “Benedictine”. I smell something that evokes a full-body sense of welcome. (I hadn’t known my bodymind coded any smell as that.) I’m reminded of Glen Ellyn, but I don’t know why.

Unconnected to the conference-thing, the carpool, the people at the cafeteria table, but definitely entwined with this specific site — where I’ve never been before — I feel like I’m exactly where I should be.



Improvising is good, while “study” isn’t going to help.

Honoring my own preferences is good. (I would’ve answered questions, and probably been pleased with any friendly interest. But if you thought I’d smooth out possible social obligations based on perceived gender, I won’t.)

I followed my curiosity, and discovered a deeper welcome than any planned human gathering could’ve provided.


I perceive why “Glen Ellyn” could be part of feeling welcome — early childhood. “Benedictine”, though, is puzzling. I haven’t been Catholic in almost 32 years, and have no fond attachments to the buildings of my (Benedictine) high school. I was rarely in the nearby abbey, and I think I was never alone there.

There was no sense of  deity or ritual; it was more like… hidden alcoves, the sweep of space, not ever being able to know the whole history of it, that beckoned me.

Scholarship, maybe. But in my own wandering fashion. Sensitivity to place. Respect for limits of others and myself.


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