I dreamed I was at a party in the house of a Hollywood executive. Most of the party guests were also executives at movie studios. It was dark inside the house. The exterior walls of the house were glass, and almost all of the light we had came from the bright security lights on the lawn, and from the security lights of the neighbors. To one side of the house, several lawns away, surf broke on a beach and reflected the bright white lights.
I was lying down on a sofa and trying to sleep, but the commotion of the party made this impossible.
The lady of the house grabbed me by the arm, pulled me to my feet and proceeded to give me an uninteresting tour of the house. Several times during the tour she asked me if I was homeless. Each time, I told her I wasn't, but she seemed either not to be listening, or not to believe me.
After dragging me around one lap of the house, the hostess let me go in the room where we had started, and I sat down on one of the several sofas in the room.
Across the room from me was a very pleasant-looking woman. She had shoulder-length hair which hung down straight except for one thin braid. We looked at each other for a very long time. In waking life, I very rarely maintain eye contact, because I'm autistic. In the dream, the eye contact also felt very intense. Gradually, the woman began to smile. She walked across the room to me, said she was going to the kitchen, and asked if she could bring me something. I told her I'd like a glass of water. She asked if that was really all I wanted from the kitchen. I assured her that it was.
When she returned, I said that I assumed she was an actress, because she was very attractive. "Thank you, she said, "but actually, I'm a paleographer. I specialize in the Carolingian minuscule. That's --"
"Oh, I know what the Carolingian minuscule is," I replied. "I'm very interested in the transmission of the Latin Classics."
"So you're a Classicist?" she asked.
"No. Well, maybe just barely one. An amateur Classicist, at any rate. So, how did a paleographer end up at a party full of movie-industry muckety-mucks?"
"I'm working on a project at the Getty," she said. (The Getty is a huge museum located in two places in Los Angeles, which contains paintings, sculpture and many other things, including a significant collection of manuscripts.) "The project is being financed by one of the guests here tonight. And you? How did you end up at this party? Are you a movie executive, to finance your love of the Classics?"
"No, I'm afraid I'm only an essayist. And I don't remember how I got to this party," I said.
We agreed to leave the movie executives behind and walk down to the beach. Dawn was beginning to break. The horizon over the ocean began to turn pink. Every minute or so, someone ran past just where the sand began to get wet, in running clothes, except barefoot. They ran very, very fast. I told the lovely paleographer that I had the impression that movie stars tended to exercise harder than professional athletes. She said it seemed that way to her as well. Then I woke up.