I woke up around 0240 this morning, and for a change it wasn't Huckleberry's fault.
I was having a strange nightmare. I was out on a hike, along (and in) a good-sized creek or itty-bitty river out in the boonies, on a fine late-summer California day, with a group. It wasn't clear whether I was the instigator of this hike, or if the group had spontaneously assembled. The other hikers were mostly a fair bit younger than I.
One thirtysomething guy, apparently in good shape and with good equipment, whose name might have been Kurt, had a mishap of some sort; the details were inconsistent even before I woke up, but I'm certain we heard a splash and didn't see him afterward. We looked around. Gradually, the group dissipated, leaving me and two women, one of whom had some interest in Kurt (it's not clear whether they'd arrived together or just met on the hike and promptly hit it off). Then one of us spotted his pack at the bottom of the creek. And his arm. And... oh crap.
So I grabbed him by the pack and dragged him ashore. Submerged for... maybe half an hour? Long enough for people to lose interest and wander off, anyway. And the water is far from cold. Really-for-sure dead, right?
At this point, my personality disorder came to the fore. What's the protocol for this*? Should we be notifying someone? Who? How? Where's the checklist?
Then I woke up, and wasn't about to get back to sleep real soon, so I read for a while, then tended the critters, and went back to bed.
I didn't get much sleep after returning to bed, either, because by that time Huckleberry was definitely awake and figured I should be too. But I did drift off a few times, to strange dreams.
I was repairing my driveway. Or having it repaired. Or had just had it repaired. Whatever: there was a dirt patch on one side, at the sidewalk end, about where there's currently a metal post that (before my time) once supported a chain-link gate. Why there was a dirt patch there, I don't know, but it seemed to make sense in context, and I'd planted things in it and was disturbed to note that someone had come along and planted little wooden stakes with pink ribbons on them, with spritzes of pink spray paint for good measure: apparently markers in service of the city's plan to issue everyone curbside mailboxes (which plan, so far as I know, only exists within that dream).
Then there came to my attention pet toys that were basically tennis balls (non-squeaky) the size of ping-pong balls, for small dogs and possibly cats. A stranger popped into the dream just long enough to tell me that he'd constructed an outsized revolver that fired those things, possibly using nail-gun blanks for propulsion - this wasn't clear, and wouldn't CO2 be a better choice? - but I'm certain is was some sort of deflagratory gas source.
When I woke up from that one, Huckleberry was aggressively looking for mischief to get into, so I decided it must be morning.
And that, folks, is why I've been groggy and out of sorts all day.
* First, make sure he's dead. Bang! OK, now what?**
** Usually presented as a redneck joke, but I think I first heard it as a Norsky joke.