The dream always begins the same. I am on a steeply inclined road, laboring to ascend. It gets harder and harder to scale, and as I move upwards, the sun quickly sets and leaves me in near darkness. I feel movement on the ground, although I cannot see what it is. The movement continues up onto my feet and climbs up my legs. I pull something off and reel in horror as I meet its beady eyed stare. They are mice, columns and hordes and undulating masses of gray, naked tailed mice. They begin to rain down on me from the sky, and I startle myself awake.
I've never thought this nightmare was prescient, but I am considering changing my mind.
Last month, I was with my class in the workroom area of our main building, built as part of FDR's New Deal in the 1930's. It is full of character, but also full of little holes in the ceilings and baseboards. We were picking up some supplies to take back to our room when I heard a scratching, scattering sound from above. A dark, furry blob dropped from a small hole in the ceiling and a mouse exploded to life on the counter in front of me. Like a spinning top on jet fuel, it zipped willy nilly up and down and all around. My students told me later the mouse scaled the wall back up to the little hole it dropped out of and disappeared. I was not there to witness it as I was already running down the hall faster than I ever imagined I could in heels.
Two days ago, I stepped out of my building. The wind blew gustily and I was glad I was wearing warm boots. Something no less than the goodness of God made me pause at the top of the steps. A dark object plummeted millimeters past my nose and plopped to the ground between my boot toes. It didn't move, which made me think for a moment it was a rock or something that had blown off the roof of the building. That idea was dispelled, though, when the little MOUSE picked it self up, did a woozy little circle between my feet and scooted off into a hole under the steps. The last part, though, I could not verify from my new vantage point atop the highest stair railing.
I hope to dream of Manolo Blahnik shoes tonight. Because, well, you know, if the things in my dreams are going to be dropping on me from the skies...