... read more " /> ... read more " />
08 October 2009

I Dreamed of Chengdu

By Evelyn

Note from Blog Team:Congrats Eve. You are our Week 1 winner for the “Chengdu Here I Come!” competition. We will be in touch shortly over the prizes. Thank you all for participating. Week 2 and Week 3 winners to be announced soon :)

Eve’s September Dream Journal

Entry #1. Tuesday
It was Freud who stated that dream was about unconscious desire or sub-conscious way to tell you things that going to happen. That’s why I’ve been taking notes on my dreams. To understands me better. My wet dream last night, for example. This one involves dramatic background, so beautifully breathtaking I thought I was in nirvana (so you can imagine the shock upon my awakening). Anyway, in my dream, I was walking inside a forest. Birds chirping, distant waterfall and the sound of my shoes walking above autumn leaves were the only noise heard. I was unmistakably lost. For somebody who loves traveling, I’m shamefully direction blind. Give me a compass, I’d still be lost. Oh but the beauty around me… who cares of being lost? I found lakes so clear I could see reflection of my own face complete with fishes and rocks that dwell at the bottom. I discovered waterfalls so picturesque that I was sure I saw it on my desktop background. I remembered feeling so blissfully happy and without thinking, jumped straight out to the clear lake… and woken up by the irritating alarm sound. What a dream. It was the very first time I dreamed in scenery. Usually it was just black hole or people I know in musical Technicolor. Quite a pleasant change, really. Fascinatingly, I came across the same waterfall when I checked my PC out of curiosity. Pearl Waterfalls, Jiu Zhai Gou Valley, Chengdu, China. Whoa. Was it a de ja vu? Or a mere sub-conscious desire to get close to nature?

Entry #2. Wednesday.
I was so tired last night; I slept immediately after landed on the bed. Yet, I felt restless and kept turning around in my sleep. I had a pretty interesting dream last night. I found myself inside a Chinese style bedroom, sitting on a very finely crafted wooden chair sipping oolong tea with my mother and brother. I looked outside at the window and inhaled something delicious being cooked right under my gastronomically curious nose. So I went out and found myself standing, gawking at one of the most beautiful alley I’ve ever seen. Architecture and ornaments beautifully preserved. Dimly lit lanterns hanged above my head in riot of colors where underneath there were people in myriad of activities. Right beside me, an old lady was busy grilling squid (it explained the delightful aroma earlier) and gave me one crisply hot and spicy squid stick. A man industriously made some sort of a red decoration was sitting in one corner. Kids were running around with a huge sugar candy. Everything was bursting with colors, sounds, scents. My five senses were working hard to experience all. Suddenly, I was singing, dancing, jumping, much like Maria when she visits the town with the von Trapp kids! It was amazing. I didn’t remember the song. I don’t even think it was really a song. I read a sign “Jin Li Street” on a building. The first thing I did when I got to the office was asking Uncle Google about it. One name popped up: Chengdu.

Entry #3. Friday.
No dream yesterday. Dream last night, however, was quite something. I’ve had a thing with panda before. There was a brief period when I decorated my room with all things panda (dolls, poster, bed sheet, you named it). I have watched a Discovery documentary about panda about thirty times and got teary eyed whenever I re-watched my favorite panda movie, The Amazing Panda Adventure. Those adorable, cuddly black and white animals are in my top ten “things to see before I die” travel list. And yet I haven’t really dreamed of them until today. Better yet, I dreamed I talked to them and they talked back! So, I was walking around at this place, a captivity or center for panda of some sort. There were people taking care of those cute lazy giants. One of them gave me a bucket full of bamboo and shooed me to the direction of an enormous unit, much like a zoo.

Inside, I found few giant pandas. Gingerly, I put few strings of bamboo near one big panda. “Can you give me a bit more, xiao jie?,” asked the big panda (I, being in a dream, didn’t find it at all odd to find a talking panda). I added some more to the stack which she immediately grabbed and savored vigorously. Between crunching and ripping intervals, I asked her, “How do you like living here?” She gulped and answered cheerfully, “It’s fine. I like being out better, of course but I’m afraid of risking my child’s life,” she caressed her belly (panda being naturally plump, I didn’t know that she was pregnant),” -beside I got feed all day without having to scrape for bamboo like I used to do, you know, having good-for-nothing as a husband.” She scoffed to the other unit where I saw a bunch of even bigger pandas hang out. “I hope this one coming out okay. I had a couple of miscarriage a couple of times before, you know. Fortunately, the doctors here are so kind. They took care of me a great deal. So I’m positive this one’s going to be alright. He’s a fighter,” she smiled at me. “Come back here sometime, xiao jie! I like you.” I also got the chance to play with three cute panda cubs. I tickled them, giggling with them and sadly, bid them farewell.

Rather weird, really. I never heard of 23 years old woman dreamed of talking panda before. Wonder what Freud got to say about this if he’s still alive. Later I found out that my favorite panda movie was shot in Chengdu! What a coincidence! I have strong feeling that this must lead to somewhere…

Entry #4. Saturday.
Ah glorious Saturday! Everything felt better on Saturday. I woke up, finished up the bladder issue and came back to bed. My dream was like a fragmented short movie. My younger brother appeared in one, my mother in another. In the first part of the dream, I found myself and my brother walking among skeletal dinosaurs in a huge museum named Zi Gong (like the one in ‘Night at the Museum’). Thankfully they stood still on their stands. We had a naming competition. My brother beat me 6 to 3 (how am I supposed to know that it wasn’t Velociraptor but Ornithomimus?). Geek.

The second part was flashes of images. My mother was walking on a hilly trek. We ran out of breath. Monkeys, lots of blonde monkeys. Sunrise between clouds, so close, so magical. I was tired but need to keep pushing to go up. “It’s our pilgrimage, darling. Don’t give up,” said my mother. We reached the top, a gorgeous monastery amidst cloud. I saw my mother with a rainbow hello. This particular dream baffled me. I felt very much in awe when I awake, like I must go there someday, somehow. We are Buddhist so it was quite haunting when my mother said ‘pilgrimage’. Later, I learned it looked similar with Emei Mountain in Chengdu. There was even a monastery on the top, one of the oldest Buddhist monasteries in China to be precise. What’s with these dreams of Chengdu?

Entry #5 Monday
OH MY GOD! I had the most FANTASTIC dream ever (yes, capital is necessary here!). I had wonderful dreams before, of course. But this one was different. I could have swore that it’s real, a de ja vu bound to happen. I dreamed that I was at the office being ordered by Mr. Devil Wears Prada Himself. Suddenly, I got a call. Private number, flashed on the screen. A very pleasant woman answered and said cheerfully, “Hello, is this Eve? Eve, congratulation! You won three return tickets to Chengdu!.” I was jumping, jubilantly shrieking: CHENGDU! I remember thinking that it was a sign, all those dreams! That was a sign to this unbelievable fantastic gift from Air Asia, the chance of a lifetime to make all those dreams coming true (and even a chance to go to Lhasa, since Chengdu located so close to Tibet).

Then, at that moment I opened my eyes.