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DREAM MEETS REALITY AT THE PARKING LOT

Thinking

Your life is a printout of your thoughts. –Iman  (Photo credit: Moyan Brenn)

A dream come true.

She shrugs at the thought. That’s a mouthful that only means reality. What was once upon a time a dream job is now as real as work piling up on her desk, as real as the boss who thinks something is amiss if she’s not huffing and puffing, as real as her workmate who does half as much as she does and expects to be rewarded twice as much as she is.

Downstairs at the parking lot, her boyfriend is waiting, his patience running thin. To him, all this time is once a dream, at least something he wished for. Now it’s here. It has come true. This is reality, all the time in the world stretching interminably. But what he once upon a time considered luxury — doing nothing — now feels like torture.

Upstairs, she is in distress. He’s waiting and there’s still so much to do.

Downstairs, he is miserable. She’s making her wait, but he has nothing better to do.

He thinks she’s too busy, no time for herself.

She thinks he’s too idle, too much time for himself.

In each of them, concern becomes a mask of resentment.

If only she had time to fix this.

If only he had no time to dwell on this.

He is desperate to find work again.

She aches to quit and be free again.

“What a life!” she mutters under her breath, thinking about his as well as hers.

“What a life!” he mutters under his breath, thinking about hers as well as his.

Finally, they meet in the parking lot. She boards the car. He looks away, taking a long drag on his cigarette. She fiddles with her phone. He turns up the radio.

Not a word is said. With dream and reality on board, the differences between them only a matter of time, the car gets going, taking these two people on the same road but in opposite directions.

—————–

This is in response to Trifecta Writing Challenge, where this week’s word prompt is ‘idle,’ the third definition of which in the Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary is ‘lazy,’ ‘shiftless.’

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22 thoughts on “DREAM MEETS REALITY AT THE PARKING LOT

  1. Wow!This is terrific:-)Guess that’s what makes life beautiful yet tough-the similarities & the differences in our situations-how we crave for what the other has & how easy/beautiful their life looks-till we wear their shoes- dichotomy of life?

    • Thank you. True, but the conflict exists even within us. Sometimes we only have to remember that once our dreams come true, they become reality and most of the time, especially when it becomes an everyday occurrence like a job or marriage or wealth, reality does not feel like a dream anymore. There are always other dreams, but with hope we learn not to take for granted the ones that have come true.

      • You said it:-)We must not take things for granted-keeping the romance,the passion,the beauty of a dream alive is hard work & requires a regular dose of acknowledgement & appreciation:-)

  2. A little bit of the “grass is always greener” angst. I liked your final line, “with dream and reality on board” … wish there was a way those two could see eye to eye. And your characters, too. Visiting from Trifecta.

  3. “What a life!” she mutters under her breath, thinking about his as well as hers.
    “What a life!” he mutters under his breath, thinking about hers as well as his.

    This is my favorite part. Very well written!

  4. How sad. It’s so true, though — dreams so seldom turn out exactly they way we think they will. (And I have trouble imagining any “dream job” remaining dreamy if you go to it every day for any length of time!)

  5. Beautifully written. And sad. Even if he’s having trouble finding a job, and she’s too busy, so much could be resolved between them if only they’d communicate, share their feelings, support one another in their dilemma. Just those lines
    “What a life!” she mutters under her breath, thinking about his as well as hers.
    “What a life!” he mutters under his breath, thinking about hers as well as his.
    indicate there could still be some connection, even caring between them.
    Reminds me of – “be careful what you wish for . . . . .”

    • Thank you. I didn’t expressly think about how communication could end this ordeal. Sometimes we can be so engrossed in our miseries that we unconsciously ignore the remedies. It’s true for each of the characters in this story and it’s true for me who dreamed them up. Sometimes in this life of constant challenge being unhappy is the easier option.

      • Oh yes, being unhappy is often the easier option, and the “pain body” (as Eckhart Tolle calls it) will do what it can to perpetuate that. We become habituated to being unhappy, and it takes real commitment and recognition, and really feeling the feelings to get beyond that. It also takes considerable practice and patience and commitment to tell the truth, and to be really willing to listen to the others POV. Well it’s life isn’t it? Always challenging us to open up, to evolve, to find a way to live from the heart.

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