THE THANKSGIVING DREAM
The sun was out, warming up my bones. It had been a chilly Florida night and, for the past two days, there had been little sun. After going to our YMCA and plunging into the warmer-than-expected water to swim my laps, I had returned home and decided to have lunch out on the dock. My dessert was one that was calorie-free; a new chapter from Julia Hughes, my British friend; her work in progress, an exciting YA story involving a young teen's encounter with a griffin and The Rider. My delight in this chapter exploded into laughter, scaring off a few wood ducks that had been lazily swimming nearby.
I was in another world though not as 'me.' As far as the eye could see, this was a world of trees, with their branches intertwining, flowing into and around each other. Gibbon-like creatures were collecting nuts and fruit, chattering excitedly as they swung from tree to tree. Iridescent winged creatures of all shapes, sizes and colors were dipping into and out of a beautiful array of flowering orchids and bromeliads that were attached to many of the trees. Many species of small, colorful birds were collecting delicate-looking mosses that grew in the crooks of the larger trees' trunks, and adding cacophonous chirping sounds to the festivity. There were ants of all sizes and other strange looking insects scurrying up and down tree trunks, managing to carry all manner of flora found on the ground below.
Gazing into a small puddle formed by raindrops onto a nearby nest of leaves, I marveled at the rainbow of colors that were glowing and shifting on this borrowed body. Chuckling in wonder, I began to make my way down to the platform by crossing over to the next tree and carefully scrambling down the trunk alongside the stream of insects, a usual source of food for a chameleon. It was amazing to me, this curious blend of animals and insects that so often were competitors for foodstuffs and for some, common enemies. The old owl spoke, "Today we come together to celebrate life. All of our differences, our competitive natures have been laid aside. Join with me in celebrating the diversity that some see as divisive; yet we celebrate the joy of living that all of us share until our individual time of living is done." Instead of pushing and shoving to get the choicest morsels first, each creature seemed to simply find their place. It was the great owl that gestured for me to come near. "Celebrate your life each day. Be like the chameleon in that you can flow more easily back into your spirit's center whenever the winds of change seem to blow you off course. For you, there is still life to be lived."
It was the slight chill in the air that woke me up, as the sun disappeared behind the clouds. I kept my eyes closed, wanting to stay in the comfort of this world of trees and to hold fast to the words spoken by the great owl. As the sun came out from behind the clouds and warmth returned, my comfort began to be infused with a sense of excitement. Gathering up my laptop and the remains of my red tea chai, I went back into my home, greeted my sleeping cats and sat down to write a story.