A nightmare over numbers

The monsters in my nightmares are a clock and a cellphone.

For most of my life, I’ve had the same recurring nightmare. I need to get somewhere quickly, but I can’t. I’m saddled with too many things to carry. I can’t remember exactly where my destination is. I can’t read the written directions. I’ve forgotten where I left my car. I lost my wallet and have no money or credit cards or identification. I have no clothes.

No one will help me.

These dreams are endless and exhausting, occurring in different locales worldwide. People I know appear then disappear. Strangers are kind for a few moments, then vanish into the crowd. The whole time the clock is ticking. I must get to the airport, class, game, theater on time, but something always holds me back.

Which brings me to my aversion to cellphones. (Stay with me.)  I acquired my very first mobile phone at the ripe old age of 65, because it’s almost impossible to function today without one. In case you’re wondering, it was probably 20 years of teaching in a high school classroom— begging my students to, Please, put the phones down!—that precipitated my loathing of cellphones.

And now I have a new reason to dislike the tiny computers, a real-world disturbing twist. In my most recent I’m-late-and-can’t-get-where-I need-to-go dream, I realized my cellphone was missing. This was the first time the wee gadget has wormed its way into my psyche. There I was in dreamland, this time facing a blackout and a hurricane—I could see waves crashing over the mountains in Arizona, and, no, LSD was not involved—and all I wanted to do was call my sweetie pie to come get me.

I used to know dozens of phone numbers by heart. Now the only one I know is my own.

But…I couldn’t remember his phone number. Now, I ask you older folks, back when you were a kid, how many phone numbers were crammed into your skull? You knew every one of your friends phone numbers by heart, as well as scores of others, am I right? Now…how many do you know today, besides your own?

See the problem?

It’s that contacts button that screws us up, never requiring us to remember phone numbers. When I awoke with a start from my dream, I realized I’d never even tried to remember my sweetie pie’s cellphone number. I’ll defend myself here a little. I’m dyslexic and have always been especially bad with numbers, so punching that contacts button seemed like a process invented especially for me. Then again, the idea of being unable to contact my loved ones—nope, I don’t even know my kids’ numbers—is scary.

I must do better. I need to start memorizing those numbers. But I don’t seem to ever get to it. A true conundrum.

Whenever I usually wake from those nightmares, my logical brain tells me to not be silly. In real life, I’d seek help from a police officer or other helpful type. But surely, they would ask me to contact my loved ones and sans my cellphone that wouldn’t happen.

What’s a girl to do?

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is wild-horses-on-the-salt-cover-2.jpg



Published by Liaison – A Next Chapter Imprint

Rebecca Quinn escapes her controlling husband and, with nowhere else to go, hops the red-eye to Arizona. There, Gaby Strand – her aunt’s college roommate – gives her shelter at the Salt River Inn, a 1930’s guesthouse located in the wildly beautiful Tonto National Forest.

Becca struggles with post-traumatic stress, but is enthralled by the splendor and fragility of the Sonoran Desert. The once aspiring artist meets Noah Tanner, a cattle rancher and beekeeper, Oscar Billingsley, a retired psychiatrist and avid birder, and a blacksmith named Walt. Thanks to her new friends and a small band of wild horses, Becca adjusts to life in the desert and rekindles her love of art.

Then, Becca’s husband tracks her down, forcing her to summon all her strength. But can she finally stop running away?

Order your copy here: http://mybook.to/wildhorsespb

2 thoughts on “A nightmare over numbers

  1. tidalscribe.com says:

    I don’t even remember my own mobile phone number let alone anyone else’s. Sometimes I wonder what it would have been like to be a nomad, no locking the door behind you, no worries about losing purse, door keys or phone when you are out!


  2. annemontgomeryauthor2013 says:

    Exactly, TS. When I was growing up, we never locked our doors in New Jersey. None of us kids even owned a key. I think we now have too much stuff that somehow feels important. In my nightmares, I am often weighed down with things that make moving impossible. Perhaps it’s time to declutter. 😉


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