With my heart pounding so hard it scared me, mouth dry as cotton, and feeling totally disoriented in the dark, I reached for the clock: 3:24 AM. I had just awakened from another dream. You know the kind of dream -- or maybe you’re lucky enough not to know. The kind of dream where you find yourself in such a dire situation that if you don’t wake up right now, you’ll never wake up to life as you now know it.
This particular dream had to do with my trying to photograph a mother tiger and her cubs. I had sneaked up close enough to get a good shot of the mother, but couldn’t see her cubs. I began to ease closer when the ground under me began to shake. There, in the woods just beyond where the mother tiger stood, was the biggest elephant I had ever seen! It was not a happy elephant. I thought maybe it planned to charge the tiger, but the tiger suddenly disappeared. The elephant caught sight of me. As it charged straight for me, I took off running. I could feel him gaining on me. Heart pounding, I could hardly breathe. I saw a hill ahead and wondered if I could make it to the top. As I started up the hill, my legs felt like lead; an awful dread enveloped me and I knew I was a goner. Then I woke up.
Was it the ice cream and gingersnaps I’d eaten just before going to bed? Why tigers and elephants? Was it a delayed reaction to the Auburn-Alabama game last week-end? All I know is, it’s a good thing I woke up when I did or that elephant would have trampled me to death in the woods, or chased me right through the gates of hell. I’m still mad that the elephant ran off the mother tiger before I could find and photograph the cubs, though. And what did I do with my camera? Seems I can’t keep from losing stuff, even in my dreams.