I am strolling across a campus I sense is somewhere in Indiana. The buildings are quite spaced out, set generously around a long, wide green. It is a bright and warm fall afternoon. Colored fallen leaves roll wistfully along the ground and in the breeze. As I walk toward my destination (presumably, class) I am aware that I am among the older students and that my schoolmates throughout the lawn are all apparently female. Although I barely notice them, they all seem in my peripheral vision to be attractive, young, and Caucasian, with long, flowing, straight hair. As I cross one footpath, there is a small group of girls who I do fully notice. They have laid down a blanket and are standing three in front, three in back and are all holding musical instruments of the lighter variety—triangles and small percussion. The girls start their first tune, and I recognize and dislike it, but the crowd around them cheer out in enthusiasm as they pass. I distinctly feel it was an easy, shameless selection, one playing to the listeners’ base musical instincts rather than a choice of interest or character.
I continue on in the journey to class, but despite not having a clear conception of the route or exact destination, I go to the right into a dark and enclosed interior building space. I climb upward and to the left, and suddenly enter what occurs to me as “cloisters,” but this doesn’t feel a place of peaceful solitude. Cut into dark grey stone are ornate carvings of religious figures, not Christ or Mohammed but popes and cardinals. These are set into pod-like spaces, where I understand one would sit, reflect, and ask for forgiveness. I don’t like the way these look—too cold, too smooth, too enclosed, and too ominous. I tiptoe in the tight space between them and walk down and to the left. The carvings and floor plan open up a bit here, but it is disorienting and scary. The path down and out of the building remind me of an M.C. Escher artwork, and the oddly jutting detailed imagery in stone vaguely recalls H.R. Geiger.
I leave the building via a side door and am keenly aware that if not trespassing I’m at least using a disapproved route. At one point I sense a male classmates is trying to follow me—not in a creepy way but just for navigation—though I do not acknowledge him in any way. The space between the first building and second is also very tight, but whereas the exit from the first seems ramshackle and betraying of the intricate, labor-intense interior, the entrance to the second is smallish, open to the sun, grand and classical. Cut from a yellowish stone, columns predominate the entrance, which is unreachable because of a congregation of men either performing or concluding some type of service or rite. These men (and a supportive woman or two vaguely sensed among them) are no Christians, however, though they do wear hats reminiscent of the Papacy. Their skin is darkly complected, and I sense a more Indian or Hindu vibe, though their dress is limited to simplistic robes and tall funny hats. While I believe them to be in a celebratory mood, their outward behavior is stoic, almost foreboding.
I pass to the right around the crowd and back into the space between buildings and I begin to ascend a level. Above, Professor Charles Adams, a seemingly evil glare in his eye and grimace across his mouth thrusts a hunchback-like arm in the air, encouraging anyone who may be accompanying me (but not me directly) to “Follow Jon…he’ll show you the correct path.” Despite his seeming confidence in my chosen direction or navigational prowess, I can’t tell it an affirmation or instruction, or if he is sinisterly ushering others toward an evil or ill fate. When I reach the top level, Adams and his teaching assistant are gone, and I am alone on a poorly constructed rooftop strewn with loose shingles, weathered boards, and broken nails. I find a light plywood door, painted black and fitting poorly, which seems to lead back to the front of the building and the Pope-esque Hindus. As I pass through the door, the dream is gone.