Follow Your Passion

I just woke up an hour early from a vivid dream. For me, the sleep just before the alarm is the sweetest sleep of all, and I almost never have trouble sleeping right up to the alarm, no matter how close I am to it in the morning. But this time, try as I might, the dream kept replaying, so I decided to get up and write it down.

I was on some sort of bus tour, and wound up on a campus of sorts. Since I’ve long been interested in swimming, I found myself in a place with a large pool, and was swimming, diving, finding new sections of the pool that had huge doors that would open (underwater) to reveal other parts of the pool. I discovered a place where a class was being conducted. I was treading water along with 3 or 4 other students listening to a very fit man talk about swimming. I asked him a question, and he mentioned he was 78 years old. This man looked nothing like what you would think someone that old would be, and I told him so. He looked at me, and reaffirmed his age, and I instantly knew he was that age, and that following his passion had kept him young.

I swam away and found myself in a classroom situation, except the class was being held in the water. As I tried to find myself a place so I could participate with the class, I noticed one of my very good former student employees in a place of authority in the room, smiled, nodded, and moved on. I remember having to swim around large bundles of cables that snaked around this room (under the water!) but it didn’t bother me or seem to bother anyone else. In the next scene, I was clothed and walking around to one of the other buildings.

I walked into a room and saw another one of my friends sitting and talking to a guy, and noticed it was Steve Jobs he was talking to. I sat next to them both and Steve moved his attention to me. I asked him a question that seemed to interest him, and he looked fairly piercingly at me for a second (we locked eyes) before he started to talk. He spoke for just a short time before I noticed there was a long line of patient people waiting in line to talk to him, sitting there while I’d bumped the line and was hogging him. He just looked at me and wordlessly said it was ok, then asked me if I’d like a drink.

I said sure and we got up and led me toward a kitchen area. The ice machine was broken, and while we talked, he opened the bottom panel of the thing, grabbed what looked like a plastic one gallon bottle with a special fitting on top out of a cupboard, pulled the old bottle out of the machine, and proceeded to swap it out. I noticed there were lots of people wandering in and out of this area going about their business while Steve and I spoke. He was telling me this particular ice maker was the first one he had purchased, and now he had 3 more. He closed the access door having completed repairs on the machine. I said to him, “What about old hardware?” I meant to ask him about using old computing hardware versus buying the latest greatest. Without even looking at me he turned on his heel, said, “ask her” and walked away.

“Her” was a very young woman much shorter than me. She had granny glasses on, and was dressed like a young hippie would have, although there was nothing jarring to me about her appearance. I repeated, “what about old hardware?” and as she looked up at me she confidently launched into a very cogent answer to a vaguely worded question that she very clearly understood, and the answer she gave me completely nailed it in a very short time.

Next I realized it was time to get back on the bus, so I headed outside and over to a place near where the bus was loading. There were a lot of people trying to leave the place, and the area was a labyrinth of gates, tall fencing, and even some barbed wire. There was a busy road right beside this fenced in area. There were many people in front of my trying to get through a single gate to get to the bus. The person at the head of the line got tangled in the turnstile because she had a large shopping bag that got stuck. I looked at her and the possibility of me getting through this long line in time to catch the bus, and determined it was futile, so I turned around and looked for a better way to get through. There was none, and I quickly found myself back in the Apple Computer area, and became engaged in some project or another.

The next thing that happened is 4 people headed by the tour director walked up to me and said it was time to go. I smiled and said of course, and walked with them. The four of them surrounded me as we walked along to a large orange door. The tour leader opened the door and we were back out in the world with a clear path to the bus. I was smiling as were my escorts. The tour leader headed off on an important mission, as did 2 of the other 4, leaving myself and one young woman. We were walking along an alley that was clearly leading back to the bus. I turned to her and said, “I can’t go!” She gave me a deer-in-the-headlights look. I started sobbing, backed up to a brick wall, and sunk to the pavement with my back to the wall sobbing uncontrollably.

She looked at me in horror and then said to me, “maybe I shouldn’t go either.” I told her, “go back,” and I could see that she understood, and was just turning to go back the way we’d come, when I woke up.

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