By Norris Chambers

 I remember my first dream. Some dreams are just as real as if the events are really happening. If you are very young and donít know about dreams it can seem a little strange to have something happen that really didnít occur. Clifton and I climbed on an old threshing machine almost every day. There were plenty of levers, wheels and gadgets to grab and aid us in our climb and from the staggering height of six or seven feet we could see all over the high grass to the drainage ditch. Climbing that old threshing machine and playing on it was certainly a lot of fun. It was also a lot of fun to jump off and land in the soft dirt surrounding the machineís parking place.

This dream that I had seemed so real that I didnít know it was a dream. I thought we were playing on the machine and jumping off in the soft dirt. On the first jump I noticed that we were not jumping into dirt but into rough gravely ground that wasnít kind to our bare feet. I couldnít understand how the texture of the soil had changed so suddenly. I was a little shocked when I woke up and found that I was in bed instead of at the old thresher. When I got up the following morning the dream was heavily pressed into my memory and I made a quick trip out behind the barn to check the soil. To my surprise it was nice and soft again.

I told Clifton about the strange visit to our play area during the night and the rough texture of the soil. I guess he thought I was a little confused. He didnít know what I was talking about. I told my mother about it and she said, ďYou were just dreaming. Dreams are not real.Ē

It wasnít long before I had other dreams but I learned to recognize them as just dreams. They sometimes seemed so real that it was hard to believe that they didnít really happen. A dream that came often in those early years was one in which I could hold my hands in a certain position and push down with all my strength and I would float above the surface and into the air about for five or  six feet. I remember that I could rise and go over the clothes line. I could move forward by leaning in that direction while continuing the constant downward push.

This floating feat that I could accomplish in a dream was something that others could not do. I felt like I should have had special recognition for doing something as unusual as this. The only thing observers would say when I started floating around was, ďOh, he can do that.Ē  It seemed to be treated as something that I could do and no one else could but it was nothing to get excited about.  This dream soon started to occur less frequently and by the time I was in the second or third grade it disappeared entirely.

There are many dream analyzers who believe that dreams have meanings and sometimes indicate what might be in store for us in the future. Most of those who make those claims will charge you for an analysis. Iíve never resorted to having a dream interpreted and after all these years of dreaming I donít know why we have dreams or if they have any special meaning. I suspect they are just part of the brainís mischievous fun time.

Animals dream at times. We have all seen dogs moving their feet as if running. I have even seen them bark in their sleep. Chickens sometimes act as if something is bothering them in their sleep. Pigs occasionally squeal while asleep. Sometimes they wake up and act surprised to find themselves in their familiar pen.

One time I had a rather confusing dream. I dreamed that I was in a lot of trouble and there didnít seem to be any way to keep from getting hurt. I woke up and discovered the dream was nothing but a dream. But the strange part was that I just dreamed that I was dreaming and woke up. Then later I really woke up!

A dream within a dream is a real rarity!

I once wrote a fantasy tale about a society in some strange place where people entered into an amusement park and paid a sizeable sum of money to enter a dream parlor. Here a technologically advanced system took you through a lifetime on some fictional planet called Earth where you lived a full life from birth to death. After years of living in a strange land where you might have a great life or a terrible one you died and the journey was over. The experience seemed so realistic that you thought the existence on earth was real and that the life there was the center of the universe.

Visitors to this strange, unreal planet were shocked to find that the people there did not live in harmony but fought each other in strange conflicts called wars. Many of the participants actually died in battle and the dream was over for them. The entire population of that planet was composed of inhabitants living the dreams they paid for in another life.

While there they did not know about their real life but lived the life of the dream. None of the earth planet or the life on it was real!

Those who returned from this dream parlor experience had very vivid memories of the lives they lived there Ė some were short and some were long, depending on the unpredictable circumstances of that particular dream. Very few of the adventure seekers who took the dream trip wanted to try another experience on earth.

Dreams can be a lot of fun, but they can also become very confusing when you begin to wonder which is the dream and which is real.

Is there a lot of fun in dreaming? Sometimes there is and sometimes there is not. It seems to depend on what the dream is about and how you are involved. My advice would be if you must dream make it a good dream. Then it will be fun!