Dear dream engine,

by , under dream engine, life

You gave me a fright! Having my bike-bags stolen when I was in the liquor shop, hitting me first with the sinking feeling of “oh no not again” and then with the realisation that I had no money for groceries and didn’t have my bank card to either pay for groceries or get more money, and then with annoyance that I had to go through the whole rigmarole of cancelling my card, waiting for a new one, keeping tabs on my account (as if there’s anything substantial in it; it’s the account with the grocery money), applying for new ID, a new railway card, a new health-insurance pass, a new swimming pass…

Then suddenly I had Tertia with me, and also an old woman waving something rescued from the bike bags as they were being stolen or perhaps left behind by the thief: a black plastic bag with three little jars in it, presumably the jars of yummy deli marmalade that Secunda brought us from London. This was oddly comforting, and it enabled me to pull myself together enough to tell the old woman that I’d left the bags on my bike countless times before, contents and all, and at least these bags had never been stolen because I’d picked them for their extreme ugliness. (This is true in waking life as well. I had beautiful new expensive black bags, and they were stolen within a week. When I went to ask Bicycle Repairman if he knew of a way to theftproof bike bags, he gave me a pair of ramshackle pink ones for free, “nobody will want to steal those”.)

It wasn’t until I was waking up that I realised that if I was coming from a shop where I’d in fact bought something, I must have had my shoulder bag with me. And in hindsight I’d probably had the bag dangling from my shoulder all the time. It was utterly realistic: that’s how irrational people are when something gives them a fright. It did leave me without my swimming bag, but compared to losing my whole shoulder bag with purse and phone that was a very minor annoyance: the loss of two towels, an expense of about 30 euros total to replace my swimsuit, toiletries bag and dry-skin cream, and either do without swimming for a couple of days until the new suit arrives from Somewhere Online or wear my frayed ill-fitting old one.


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