Last night I had a dream about looking for writing materials in a crappy shop. In my dream I was supposed to attend a lecture but had forgotten my briefcase so I had no way to take lecture notes. Hence my attempt to find pen and paper in the crappy shop.
Crappy shops are crammed with ephemeral junk, dross which nobody would set out to buy but somehow these shops manage to exist principally in tourist spots, especially the seaside. They sell anything from confectionery to twee ornaments, cheap toys, novelty Dad’s Cuppa mugs, china fairies seated on a china mushroom, glass paperweights, novelty signs to hang on the bathroom door, tasteless coasters, postcards, hologram pictures of tigers, plastic dinosaurs and so on and so on.
Dreams seem to be an amalgam or recently stimulated themes whereby we make sense of the real world, so presumably the crappy shop is one of my themes. Frustration would be another theme, not so common since I retired. Another theme is the lecture - I recently watched one on YouTube. Two others were the Victorian red brick institution where the lecture was to be held and the old leather briefcase I’d forgotten. I recently saw a fine antique leather briefcase on the internet.
Other themes are bright lights, because crappy shops tend to be brightly lit and cheap ballpoint pens because the crappy shop in my dream had a big glass bowl full of the cheapest of the cheap. I knew I’d have to buy two in case one didn’t work properly. That's a more subtle theme - just in case. The modern world is crammed with just in case themes.
The trouble was I knew I would never find a pad of A4 paper suitable for those lecture notes. The crappy shop had heaps of pens but unless I wrote my notes on Post-It notes I knew I wouldn’t find anything suitable. I had to search for the paper by squeezing round lots of other customers and that’s another theme, the crowded shop.
Then I woke up.
Phew - I didn’t need the paper after all. The dream has also left me with an aversion to crappy shops, but presumably I had that already.