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Narrative, dreams and early morning semi-consciousness to solve problems and develop ideas

On Desert Island Discs Julian Fellows said how he had written 20 screenplays before he got his break; it helped that he was in the arena as an actor.

I have 8 screenplays and a couple of TV series.

Like Julian Fellowes I have been involved in Children’s TV too, though with much frustration I repeatedly found myself behind a closed door at the very final stage of either directing various children’s dramas or having a script commissioned and produced. Like ideas in the past the ‘next script’ has made it from my head to the page. I woke this morning with the scene that brings the story to a close, a good place to be.

I glanced through the Technique Library for B822, ‘Creativity, Innovation and Change’.

This is a Filofax like folder of 200 ideas, one per card, in alphabetical order. My immediate idea would be to have it all in a relational database tool like FileMaker Pro. Indeed, in the early 1990s there was a CD called ‘Ideafisher’ which achieved some of this. It could be an App, though I imagine there are a myriad of copyright issues.

‘Alternative Scenarios’

This strikes me as less of a process as something we do automatically. I woke to this, dwelling on things that may or may not work in relation to a business problem. A narrative, with its alternatives scenes, is a way to think something through and even share your thinking.

I then realise there had been a dream too. This happens when you reposition yourself in bed and find yourself lying the way you were when you had the dream; try it. I attended a meeting where I felt neither my experience, nor my ideas were heard and rather than hang around as I knew the thing would ramble on with many opinions being expressed, no decision taken and the idea from the highest ranking person would trumping all others.

I can run through a list of 20+ questions that help analyse this further, I won’t (certainly not in public), however I will offer this.

I could have taken myself back into the dream, in a semi-conscious state and behaved differently. Indeed, I may try it tonight. I can see the set up, the meeting place as a train carriage or a marquee (don#t ask!) I know the protagonists. I know why I was thinking about the issue.

This time what do I do differently?

Lobby everyone before hand? Ensure that I have an ally? Invite in a new comer to mix it all up? Change the venue. Aim to be the last to leave rather than the first?

Decades ago, when I first got into this, on a family holiday where my older sister introduced me to the concept of interpreting dreams, I got used to sitting up and jotting down the ideas. You can’t do this for long. You realise you may dream four or five times a night. By becoming conscious of them you wake up of course. And the very act of consciously thinking about the dream changes what it was, or embeds the scenario. I’ve analysed a few in this blog.

Large scale open source learning systems : Notes and cryptic thoughts

Large scale open source e-learning systems at the Open University UK Niall Sclater (2008)

Welcome to a mega-university (Daniel, 1996)

Requires exceptionally feature rich, robust and scalable e- learning systems.

Founded in 1069 not 1970(JV)

(Slight slip on the iPad there, but an interesting idea that we might be able to trace the origins of The OU to 1069 rather than 1969, which would place The OU as an older institution of the founding universities of Bologna in that century and the Oxford and Cambridge Colleges of a century later)

‘Creativity is mistakes’

(Greyson Perry 2011. Search this blog for more)

I applaud the mistakes we make typing at a thousand words an hour on a keyboard that’s akin to ice-skating in well-worn calf-skin slippers. This aren’t Freudian slips they’re breaks and laughs in our stream of consciousness; ideas we didn’t know that had formed that break-out.

The OU 2008 to 2011

Was 180,000 OU students in 2008 now it is 210,000.

Was 7,000 associate lecturers now more like 8,000 or is it 10,000?

Online conferencing and e-assessment expertise disparate systems vs consolidation and unity of design LMS to restrict, present and monitor enrolled students.

+ collaborative activities through forums, blog and wikis.

Control as a means to acceptance therefore Open Source rather than commercial software vs fears about systems nor people being ready for it after the failure of UKe university.

Mark Dougiamas and Moodle with the leadership drive and qualities of Linux Tordvalds.

  • Understand the entire application
  • Optimize at every opportunity
  • Spot new requirements

Ensure that they are fulfilled

  1. Functionality
  2. Usability
  3. Documentation
  4. Community
  5. Security
  6. Support
  7. Adoption

Enabling socio-constructivist learning

  • Prisoners and the visually impaired.
  • Enhancement to the calendar system so that students can keep track of their work and tutors can keep track of them.
  • Additions of an eportfolio and audio both now semi-defunct.
  • Issues over deadlines, over responsibility for key functionality, over whether to incorporate blogs or not, the value or otherwise of comments functionality and the delays over seeking consensus.

To Wiki OU or to wiki SP?

NB How to move from a primarily print-based educational paradigm to one that also effectively exploits the dynamic, interactive and communicative aspects of the Internet. p9

Rather like saying that we want to integrate text books that pop-up and exercise books that deliver assessments as a kind of origami; at some stage like a glob of stuff in a lava-lamp the new platform will spawn an entirely distinct way of learning.(JV)

Many in the faculty have been engaged for large parts of their working lives in the development of text for a large part of their working lives and do not have the inclination or skills to think about delivering parts of their courses as podcasts or wikis. p9

NB Enhancing the learning experience for students.

Ensuring central quality control, copyright clearance, branding and good design and high- quality audio recordings often means that faculty and tutors feel they have less autonomy and can be less creative than they wish. p10

Or abandon the institutional LMS for PLSs. p11

Not so much food for thought, than a smorgasbord; not so much an hour and a half to ponder, but the weekend and beyond, including walking the dogs and when asleep.

I dream in page flips on an iPad.

I’ve been engaged in some bizarre dream world in which multiple varieties of fish leap from one pool to another. I presume this is some intellectual dance that is going on and ought to take time out to reflect on this.

I blame it on the level of digital interactivity, not just this QWERTY keyboard typing thing (which I do with my eyes shut as a party piece), but the way I constantly exchange hands when using an iPad, flipping the page from portrait to horizontal, opening the page out or closing it down, wiping the tip of my little finger across the page to flip a page or roll down through content.

I even wonder if six years playing the flute and piano with some seriousness has not made this adaptation all the more easy?

All I need now is a mouth-piece, something like a gum-shield or orthodentic plate so that I am given additional control to select and highlight by moving my tongue.

Never so far fetched as you may imagine.

Now answer the following:

What criteria should we use to assess whether our LMS is meeting our requirements?

Might we be better served by a different (possibly open source product)?

What are the benefits and the challenges of our institution’s engaging with an open source community, given its inevitable compromises and delays?

In what ways are we using our LMS to control the experience of learners, and how are we using it to empower them?

How can we avoid getting tied up in discussions surrounding technologies and keep our focus on finding solutions that enhance the learning experience for our students?

The Contents of My Brain (TCMB)

Fig.1. Glass Skull by Rudat

The current generation will be able to begin to achieve a fraction of this if they please; all I have to go on are diaries I stared in March 1975 and efforts since then to recall all the events, feelings and dreams of my life to that point.

This alongside photoalbums, scrapbooks and sketch books, with lists of books read and films seen, maps of places visited and a complete extended family tree ought to offer a perspective of who or what I am.

Does any of it impact on how I think and behave?

Without my mind is it not simply a repository of typical memories and learning experiences of a boy growing up in the North East of England?

Blogging since 1999 there are like minds out there, though none have come back with an approximation of the same experiences (its been an odd, if not in some people’s eyes, bizarre, even extraordinary roller-coaster of a ride).

It’s value? To me, or others?

I could analyse it ’til the day I die. My goal is no longer to understand me, but to understand human kind. And to better understand the value of exercises such as this, not simply hoarding everything, but of consciously chosing to keep or record certain things.

For now I will exploit the tools that are offered. In theory anything already digitised on computers going back to the 1980s could now be put online and potentially shared. Can I extract material from a Floppy-disc, from an Amstrad Disc, from a zip-drive? Should I add super8mm cine-flim already digistised on betacam masters? And the books Iv’e read, beyond listing them do I add links even re-read some of them? And a handful of school exercise books (geography and maths) A’Level folders on Modern History. I kept nothing from three years of university, yet this is where the learning experience ought to have been the most intense. But I had no plans to take that forward had I?

My university learning was spent on the stage or behind a video camera.

Should I undertake such an exercise without a purpose in mind?

Do I draw on it to write fiction?

There is a TV screenplay ‘The Contents of My Mind’ that could be stripped down and re-written, even shared.

And all the fiction, the millions of words.

Will this have a life if put online?

Is it not the storyteller’s sole desire to be heard? To have an attentive audience?

On keeping a dream diary

The lack of control over where your head goes and what it reveals should understandably go with a note of considerable caution. There often is no such thing as an innocent dream. It sometimes throws me when what is apparent in the dream: its people, actions and events can once analysed tell you something you can’t accept or dislike about yourself or others.

Context is everything. What bothers you as you fall asleep? What’s on your mind? A film you have just watched could very well fill your head; I’m still enjoying the afterglow of ‘500 days of summer’: troubled because its truth but delighted in the outcome.

It is less the dream diary, but a diary that can help you put your subconscious to work. Should you write up your troubled day, and should you care not only to bring work home with you but also take it to bed, then indeed, the issue that is strangling your budget, or losing you business friends could be resolved in a dream. Once you have that dream in the conscious arena you can even rework it like a TV producer changing the protagonists and outcomes.

I dreamt I was in a court of sorts (I can see it in my mind’s eye but will neither describe it or attempt to draw it unless some detail needs bringing out).

I presume I was a prosecuting solicitor. Two trials cut together one after the other (have dreams always been film literate?). The second case is a rape; he is ‘cock sure’ thankfully there is no murder involved. He deserves to receive the severest punishment. The previous case with a different barrister had gone off like a damp squib; perhaps it wasn’t as serious a case but I felt the person had got off lightly and I blamed the barrister for not following my instructions suitably closely. In this second trial I have a word perfect summing up which I might expect this new barrister to follow. On the contrary, I find this person launch in more like a hack journalist/columnist than a prosecuting lawyer. I worry that the defendant will get off lightly; however, it soon dawns on me that this person is using my argument but not the script and like a standup comic (though with professionalism and the hint of a smile of confidence) they will deliver a knock-out blow: they have taken what I can provide and made it better.
Does this solve my problem? It doesn’t answer something specific. If the photocopier is broken and never gets fixed I don’t think I’d turn to my ‘dream spirits’ for the answer.

Does it even suggest to you that this approach has legs? Me, I’m the defence solicitor, not the barrister. I may not solve the ‘problem’ the defendant, though I make my contribution.

Nor have I had to resort to a set of 27 questions to reach this point (see below).

I do not imagine sitting with a bunch of colleagues interpreting their dreams would be appropriate or suitable; they ate too random, and so are we. But I do recommend this approach for personal problem resolution, but be warned, you may try to get your dreams to set out your next career move only to discover that in your heart you hate your job and sector and wish instead to teach English to Japanese school-girls.

Reflection and the need or otherwise of compulsory interaction in e-learning

Assessing your capacity to reflect ‘on your development’

  • In the Masters in Open and Distance Education Course Guide for module H808 (p.7) it says that “we regard [the reflective commentary] as equally academic because it deals with knowledge that is constructed during the course. (Although this knowledge is more subjective and not intended to be confirmed or refuted, rather it is self-knowledge for the writer)”
  • Cognitive Housekeeping

    • Moon (2001) draws on other theorists such as Schon, Dewey and Kolb in her paper. I had never questioned why certain work events make me reflect and others do not, but I think the point about reflecting on complex and challenging issues/events, as a means of ‘cognitive housekeeping’ resonated with my personal experience. A Student.
    • I think assignments are designed as prototype reflections for the final course assignment, perhaps to help with the unfamiliarity/unease and get us used to reflective writing before the assignment (as Moon suggests, reflection as a gradual process aimed at getting students started, then deepening their reflections). Another Student.

    ‘involving emotions helps to promote reflectiveness.Moon (2002) cited in Salmon (2002)

    Moon (2005) describes reflection as an essential component of good quality learning and the representation of that learning. A Student

    (Moon, 1999a) as the reflection itself helps learners realize the depth of their knowledge and understanding therefore the notion of reflection functions as means of learning something new as well as harmonizing prior knowledge and experiences in the process. A Student

    This process of arriving at an idea of what is absent on the basis of what is at hand is inference. What is present carries of bears the mind over to the idea and ultimately the acceptance of something else.” (Dewey 1933:190) A Student

    Jenny Moon suggests that learners undertake either a deep or surface approach towards a learning task.

    A deep approach is seen when the learner understands the meaning whilst a surface approach focuses on memorizing the material as it is by not trying to connect it with previous understanding. Developing a deep approach to a learning task as an ideal path can be well achieved with the help of giving learners the chance to represent learning in different ways, in the form of a presentation, graphic display, mind mapping, essay writing, forum posting, keeping a learning journal, logs, diaries, portfolios, peer-reviewing and personal development planning. Another Student

    Phyliss Creme (2005) The compulsory nature of core activities might support the underlying approach that reflective activity “should be recognized part of the assessment process; otherwise students would not take them seriously”

    Building our professional development portfolio in four areas of competency; practice-related, communication-related, technology-related and research-related support formal assessment with different ways of thinking rather than the traditional means.

    Especially at initials stages of a reflective activity learners would need a reader to reach at for feedback and this is possible with the help of blogging tools.

    As Creme (2005) observes in the 10-week course, “One or more of the two-hour seminars was given over to the students reading each other’s journals. This was generally very productive, the most useful outcome being the students’ growing respect for each other’s work and realizing how diverse each other’s experiences, thinking and way of writing could be”.

    REFERENCE

    Crème, P. (2005) ‘Should student learning journals be assessed?’, Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education, vol. 30, no. 3, pp. 287–96. Available from: http://www.informaworld.com.libezproxy.open.ac.uk/smpp/section?content=a713605501&fulltext=713240928 (accessed 30 Sept 2010).

    Moon, J. (2001) ‘PDP working paper 4: reflection in higher education learning’ (online), The Higher Education Academy. Available from: http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/assets/York/documents/resources/resourcedatabase/id72_Reflection_in_Higher_Education_Learning.rtf (accessed 25 Sept 2010).

    Moon, J. (2005) ‘Guide for busy academics no. 4: learning through reflection’ (online), The Higher Education Academy. Available from: http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/assets/York/documents/resources/resourcedatabase/id69_guide_for_busy_academics_no4.doc (accessed 28 Sept 2010).

    Salmon, G (2002) E-tivities
    Smith, M. (1996) ‘Reflection: what constitutes reflection – and what significance does it have for educators? The contributions of Dewey, Schön, and Boud et al. assessed’ (online), The Encyclopaedia of Informal Education. Available from: http://www.infed.org/biblio/b-reflect.htm (accessed 21 Sept 2010).

    Weird Quest Dream and Analysed

    Thursday 4th January 2007

    I’m in a Moorcock world (though I’ve never read one, I’ve seen the illustrations)

    As Dracula in the Dracula Spectacula

    I return to my old prep school to become re-engaged with creatures that exist in another dimension: vampire like freaks with whom I had become friends and amongst whom I had made a friend, a girl I had rescued and returned to them. Without my help they will die. I must go on a mission to find her again. In order to take on this task I must compromise my human form, taking on more of a type in which I become more like bone with a soul, than a flesh and blood creature … my skeleton is less human than I imagine, the bones a thick as those in Skate around the ribs for example.

    You could say these were well hidden Aliens.

    Death is always close. As a human I could be consumer/translated … sucked dry at ay moment by one of these fairy/nymphs. My guardian is the head prefect/head master or prince of this kingdom/state. The instructions for the tools I require to get to this other outlet for their existence is complex and bizarre, mixing woodland craft, feathers and sticks with hi-tech gadgetry … and for more entertainment, a few toys.

    While I’m there a war breaks out.

    Dressing up as confederate solider they fight a battle with a second tribe also in fancy dress – all very Terry Gilliam, even Labyrinth or Henson’s Creature Workshop this.

    Death is common place.

    I allow someone who could be an evil torture to commit me to the procedure of becoming more like them, this will make me better able to find ‘the missing one, but will also make me less human. The procedure resembles having an enema through the heart – though I continue to live it seems to dissolve, then suck out my vital organs. In moonlight I am nearly translucent.

    Procrastinating before this dangerous journey I am surprised to see another set out before me – Selina Scott (representing my sister, or an alternate or another part human). The sacrifice I am taking is being taken by others too. I now feel there is a race on … only one of this can succeed at the task to which I am now committed.

    I have a flying device, more like a jet ski with wings/a sail.

    Like many of these creatures’ devices it works by being plugged into your own body, drawing energy from you. My speed is controlled, as it were, by my blood pressure (or mood). It is hard to tell which. I set off at dusk, into a moonlight sky, into the clouds, over the town where I come from settling into the space on my vehicle on a trip that will take me to the other side of the world – as far as New Zealand on a large microlight. A couple of servant like beings have been sent too (or come with the kit).

    They wait on me.

    05h35 I’ve been dwelling on this in semi-consciousness for half an hour. I run through it a few times, the simple stages of returning to my old prep school, finding these beings that I befriended while their, being drawn in to undertake a dangerous mission that will return me to my true love … and save them from extinction. I feel it has something of ‘The Watersprites’ about it … something of ‘The Girl in the Garden’ too. (Screenplays)

    1: Who are you in the dream?

    Me. Younger. If returning to Mowden I may be late teens/early twenties.

    2: Who are you with in the dream?

    A human boy.

    3: What details stand out?

    The creature world from the woods juxtaposed with the human world.

    4: What do you feel about these details?

    A fantasy land that mixes wood nymphs, vampires, devilish ghouls and other ‘woodland’ creatures with the modern … somehow. Beings that exist in another dimension, or so disguised that they are unknown to most people.

    5: What are the various actions in the dream?

    Meeting old friends, re-familiarising myself with a form of existence I had forgotten about, committing to a risky adventure, self-sacrifice by becoming more like them to undertake the challenge/journey.

    6: How are you acting and behaving in this dream?

    Curious, cautious, interested … on familiar ground, but seeing it from the point of view of an adult, so making me less weary, or better able to stand up to some of the creatures, especially the underlings, in this strange, dark, wood world that has been touched by human technology … and have developed an alternate technology of their own as a result.

    7: What relation does this dream have to your personality?

    Forever setting off on quests of the imagination, where I must sacrifice things, commit to things and do it for no better reason than the pleasure I get from taking the journey and the reward at the end … love, companionship, a soul mate.

    8: What does the dream want from you?

    To write it down, visualise it, then incorporate it into a story I have already written or devised and give it a film structure.

    9: What are the various feelings in this dream?

    Awe, disgust, fear, trepidation … wonder, participation, being up for it …

    10: What relation does this dream have to what is happening right now in your life?

    We’re selling the house and moving … but more significantly, after a break of several months, I am about to commit to working on a story for possible publication. Again. Even though I need some kind of regular employment too to support us at the same time.

    11: Why did you need this dream?

    Do I need it? Is it a distraction? Or is it showing me the way forward? I have far too many projects on the go simultaneously. Is this a new one, or a return rto an old one? Should I not be redrafting something I have written already?

    12: Why have you had this dream right now?

    It’s the beginning of the year. January is always the beginning of a set of difficult challenges for me: don’t drink, come of coffee, detox … get the accounts in order, find a job (or get some stories out) … make plans, hope that some of them will bear fruit during the year.

    13: What relation does this dream have to something in your future?

    I need to achieve something. I need to undertake and complete a lonely, bizarre mission of sorts. I need to enter my head, extract a story from it, and lay this out on paper in a way that others can share and enjoy.

    14: What questions arise because of this dream work?

    Whatever story I tackle, I must see it through to the end … the end being putting it into the hands of a publisher or an agent.

    15: Who or what is the adversary in the dream?

    Me. Being distracted … filling my time and my life with something else. Making excuses … TV, the internet.

    16: What is being wounded in this dream?

    The transformation is one way. There is pain involved.

    17: What is being healed in this dream?

    Having something to do . Being a part of something.

    18: What or who is the helping or healing force in this dream?

    That comes when I complete the mission.

    19: Who or what is your companion in this dream?

    Alone.

    20: Who are your helpers and guides in life as well as in your dreams?

    Alone. Though my wife, children and mother would deny this … there are even a few encouraging friends out there.

    21: What symbols in this dream are important to you?

    The weirdness of it, The otherworldliness of it.

    22: What actions might this dream be suggesting you consider?

    Get on and write it down.

    23: What can happen if you work actively with this dream?

    I’ll turn out a science-fantasy adventure story.

    24: What is being accepted in this dream?

    I need to set out on a quest.

    25: What choices can you make because of having this dream?

    Take on a quest … a writing journey most like (or a production).

    26: What questions does this dream ask of you?

    Ensconce yourself in the world of science-fantasy story telling.

    27: Why are you not dealing with this situation?

    Force of habit. Fear of rejection. Inertia. Distractions … any excuse!

    28: What do you want to ask your dream spirits?

    Keep coming back!

    29: How helpful has this survey been?

    An indulgence, always. TBT up. I crave coffee. I make a cup of hot lemon but fear I must have a coffee or retire to bed.

    Result of my unwritten New Year’s resolution?

    Detox Jan 1st: no caffeine, red meat, milk or bread.

    Jan 2nd no coffee, milk, or caffeine … until I had a piece of chocolate cake.

    Jan 3rd Took Paracetomol with caffeine, had three mouthfulls of coffee, had soup made with turkey stock and ate a couple of sausages with the kids instead of cooking the Tuna fish.

    Jan 4th. Early days, but if the only way I can function having been up for two hours is to have a coffee then I will need to have a coffee! Pain in coccyx where I damaged it earlier this summer. I fear I cannot sit for long on any hard bench or chair … nor am I likely to sail dinghies as your arse tends to take a bashing! And there were a few more hours to the day:

    Collecting TBT’s friend who came over to play.

    Throwing out the Christmas tree and replacing the pile of pebbles we used to hold it in the pot. Making lunch. And this. I gave an hour at most to writing. I’m working on the story of a young woman who gets herself onto the Front Line during World War I for a couple of days and nights..

    REFERENCE

    McKim, R.H. (1980) Experiences in Visual Thinking, Belmont, CA, PWS (Wadworth Inc.) pp 101-3 Garfield, P. (1976) Creative Dreaming, New York, Ballantine, Chapter 8, ‘How to keep your dream diary’.

    Sister’s On Ice – pre-marriage dream

    Sister’s On Ice – pre-marriage dream

    27/02/1993

    It’s a pre-match warm up for the Olympic Figure Skating Championship. One couple stands out from all the others – two tall women dancing together. They’re supposed to be a mixed pair, they look like two teenage boys in drag, or women made up to be men. Very 1920’s. One of them, like Katerina Witt. The other more feminine.

    Both have shabby hair (Like the band “Shakespeare’s Sister” make-up/cropped hair). Gothic meets New Romantic. It transpires that I am the Katerina Witt character (I am male, 30 yrs) and the other, more balletic and composed dancer is my fiancé (26 yrs).

    Physically we don’t look anything like our real selves, but I know these two characters represent us. We’re going through our moves, enjoying it, easy stuff. We’re not doing the “triple axles,” keep those for the event. (Here I need help on skating terminology). Wouldn’t want to injure ourselves before the competition.

    We imagine/know where and when they’ll come. Despite the months of training which has got us this far I feel compelled to consider adding different things, even at the last moment, especially if the dangerous jumps are out during rehearsal.

    My fiancé (I’d call he my girlfriend but we’ve been engaged for 9 months), is more sure of herself. She is leading me, as the man would in ballroom dancing. She is keeping me right. She is steadfastness, dependable. It is this security, this foundation that allows me to try out the new stuff. She tolerates it like an indulgent mother. She could be watching me clamber through the highest branches of a tree. Not to put me down, she also knows that it’s my experimentation that produces the elements of important, competition winning, originality in our routine. As they say, “behind every great man, is a good women” (or something.

    It turns out we care far more about enjoying our own private dance, than the content of the routine that is about to be judged. This is our time. We’re enjoying it. deliberately not taking the warm-up too seriously. We’re content with ourselves and each other.

    What happened ?

    We’re rehearsing. We’re good at what we do. We’re not interested in other contestants or on-lookers, though the are there. (The rink isn’t busy.

    I’m shocked that we have the appearance of a couple of lanky lesbians. (See the couple in the film “Henry & June,” that was kind of us, a Lesbian Act for Henry Miller and Anais Nin). We are made up, but we are doing it for ourselves. As we skate I’m not convinced this is how we propose appearing in the competition, however much fun it might be to “raise eyebrows” at the moment.

    Where ?

    An ice-rink. Pre-competition. Things might have been going on in the background to get the rink ready. The location could very well have been a large, international airport – one of the satellites at Geneva Airport, for example. Or something at Charles de Gaulle.

    Who are you ?

    I’m one of the dancers. Though male (in a female guise) I’m not leading the dance. My partner is the support and has a clearer idea of what is going on. She is conventional. Stead-fast, whilst I’m inclined to give new moves a go even as we warm up and go through the routine we’ll have to perform shortly.

    Who are you with ?

    My partner. My fiancée. Though the characters in the dream aren’t playing out the relationship I’m aware of who we are as an observer.

    Describe

    We are both been dressed in Tuxedo’s of sorts. The make-up is very “Cabaret” or Shakespeare’s Sister. Kurt Weil. Ute Lemper. Ulma Therman. Over the top GOTHIC. With dark circles around the eyes and white face make-up.

    What do you feel about them ?

    Two people who are close. Who move together. Who can cope with the one of them trying new things rather than settling for the routine they have already worked out – however stable the routine might be.

    What are the various actions in the dream ?

    Ice-skating. In rehearsal. Probably more personal, with flairs of the Impresario from me. I can risk it in rehearsal if not in competition (in the real thing). Though my partner half expects me to repeat any new move that works in the routine that will follow – there’s always room to add/change.

    The ice dancing with my fiancé is close, personal, intimate, every day – and very loving. We dance very much “as one” and “get it right” as we rehearse our maverick moves.

    How am I as DREAM EGO acting/behaving in this dream ?

    Passively. Content. The right degree of innovation and support.

    What relation does this dream have to my personality ?

    Spot on. The need to be inventive from within a stable relationship and within stable circumstances (somewhere to live, work).

    What symbols in this dream are important to me ?

    The ice rink is a society – not a stage. The dance is how I (we) live our lives. The appearance is how we feel on the inside.

    What are the various feelings in this dream ?

    There is a feeling of deep, private love with my fiancé during our ice-skating – our love is not the archetypical “husband at work, wife at home,” it is almost the other way around. She has to guide me … not because I don’t know my steps, but because I’m so keen to keep trying something new.

    What relation does this dream have to what is happening right now in my life ?

    A great deal. There is a conflict between wanting to conform (steady income, mortgage, roots) and a desire to remain non-conformist – indeed to go my way. This idea is encouraged by the “Ice Dance” in which my fiancé & I are recognised as the most brilliant (though often peculiar/radical) ice dance couple. I enjoyed the feeling that we are (were) seen as odd. Happiness discovered on our terms rather than someone else’s.

    Who or what is the adversary in the dream ?

    There isn’t one. Our attitude to other competitors, who might have been warming up on the rink or who we will face in competition, is that we are unassailable. Or we don’t care about them, win or loose.

    My real life experience of ice-skating is awful – on two occasions I’ve been concussed after falls. In the dream though there was never any feeling of uncertainty or danger. Not even the feeling that we might be skating on “thin ice.”

    We are in our element in this dream. Totally at ease with the skating.

    What or who is the helping or healing force/agent in this dream ?

    My fiancé. Because at the end of a difficult “work” day I have her and we’re “off on our own” doing our own thing and doing it very well. For ourselves more than for others.

    In previous dreams “Winter Sports” in particular skiing, has always represented my desire to live in France. In this dream, ice-skating, I feel it represents a compromise – it hints at being abroad, but maybe not in the Alps. It certainly removes snow and skiing as a priority.

    My fiancé, more so in this latest dream than before, is taking the lead, guiding my steps, giving me advice, keeping me in her arms. Yet we are very much a “team” on equal terms, represented by the androgynous manner of our dress and roles. When I break free and have a quick go and something new within the rhythm of our dance she watches with pride knowing that I’ll rejoin the dance where required.

    What is being wounded in this dream ?

    Nothing.

    What is being healed in this dream ?

    Doubts about how we should govern our lives.

    What would I like to avoid in this dream ?

    Falling over. Being seen as a fool by anyone bothered to watch our dance. Being rejected by my fiancé.

    What actions might this dream be suggesting I consider ?

    What I do with my fiancé, however odd it might look to people from the outside, is OUR THING ! So be it ! What does this dream want from me ? It’s saying “Be Yourself.” Stray very far from this, such as attempting to join in someone else’s activity and I will be nudged out – who wants to join a municipal restaurant meal anyway, when in Truth to be the starts of a Jean-Paul Goud ice-skating show !

    What choices can I, and will I, make as a result of having t his dream ?

    Continue to be myself. Strive to make my life and relationship with my fiancé all the bizarre and wonder full things it wants to be. In other people’s eyes, bizarre and rich. It matters to us that our contemporaries see us as “odd.”

    Why ?

    Because we struggle to live in France. We lead a lifestyle which others see as strange … and which they might envy.

    What does this dream want from me ?

    I must stop trying to be conventional. It doesn’t work. I must press on with trying to achieve the personal and professional goals that matter to both Darlingest and I.

    What questions does this dream ask of me ?

    What is more important ?

    Fitting in with a load of strangers, or being happy with my fiancé in a fantastic relationship ?

    What is more important ?

    Putting on an image (facade) to fool (or impress) old acquaintances, or building on a unique, special, intimate relationship with my fiancé?

    Who or what is my companion in this dream ? Darlingest ! A strong, experienced, skilled, feminine, athletic Darlingest. A confident person who “knows the steps” and gladly guides me in mine.

    Why did I need this dream ?

    How I live matters as much to me as what I do to earn a living. If I can earn a living in a way which allows me to live where and how I desire then I should do so.

    Why am I not dealing with this situation ?

    The usual conflict between the desire to do my own thing and the need to conform in order to earn a living. I am, but not full-heartedly. Necessity dictates that I earn a living.

    What choices can I, and will I, make as a result of having this dream ?

    It highlights my priorities. Darlingest, and building a life, our Life, with her, is and must be my priority. It is. We must build …. look forward, not backwards.

    What do you want to ask us your dream spirits ?

    Are you the ones feeding my confidence?

    Why are you sometimes afraid of us, your dream spirits ?

    I’m not, am I ? I let you have your say, understand(usually) what you say and try and build on it. You are, after all, my “alter-ego”, my real “inner” self.

    Why have I had this dream now?

    Other choices are being thrown in my path – retracing my steps (old friends)> Or making a go of it with strangers … but there clearly is no choice. Darlingest is everything I need to satisfy my desire to have a partner and live an “irregular” or “bizarre” life-style.

    What can happen if I work actively with this dream ?

    I can remind myself, vividly, of where my life should be going. I should be aspiring to the bizarre, not the mundane. I should be pressing on with “our” ambitions, not turning back on them.

    What is being accepted in this dream?

    That Darlingest can be (and is) everything !

    What new questions come up from this dream work?

    The usual ones. How do I earn a living ?

    By combining my “imaginative” activities with a means to earn a living.

    The tourist looking around. Testing my skills at flying myself around town, between tall walls, off roof tops, over traffic. It’s a feeling, not mechanical. It’s a matter of self control. Enjoying the surroundings Away from people I can fly, but when I’m being watched (have to perform) or if my dropping to earth is going to cause problems for others then I loose concentration and float to ground.

    What relation does this dream have to my personality ?

    I fly when I’m doing my own thing, away from others. When people watch to see if I’ll fall I come down to ground. Not crash, just on their level.

    What does this dream want from me ?

    I’d prefer to fly than walk. That tells me to ignore their views. nor to seek their pleasure, but to get on with my own thing.

    What are the various feelings in this dream ?

    Flying like this is no longer a surprise. I’ve always wanted to do it. I’d like to fly higher and faster and be more sure of controlling it. It’s a sense of private satisfaction, curiosity satisfied, private and pleasurable. Flying over dams or stepping of buildings is a test of my powers. Am I sure of myself ? I don’t fall. In such situations as a teenager I would have crashed to the ground ! I’m frustrated when I touch down on the way back to the airport not only disrupting some local contest, but also being left to walk back and miss or delay the flight.

    What relation does this dream have to what is happening right now in my life ?

    It’s fine to fly, but it’s private. IF I want to succeed at doing something I enjoy I must be able to face up to criticism and the views of others, without loosing the ability to fly. Working from home is the flying feeling, especially when its more creatively orientated. Coming down to earth is the bread and butter work I do, though I should be able to take it with me into the air !

    Why did I need this dream ?

    I wonder where my life is going. AM I in control ?

    Why have I had this dream now ?

    I’m having to get the right balance between flying and walking, things I do for myself and things which earn me a living. One day they will be one and the same thing. I’m also concerned that if I’m too preoccupied with my own thing the “Family” might fly on without me.

    What relation does this dream have to something in my

    future ?

    The quest for work which brings me the same satisfaction and uniqueness of flying.

    What new questions arise as a result of this dream work ?

    How can I keep control of the flying ? I need a fuel gauge or more fuel !

    Who or what is the adversary in the dream ?

    Albert … at arms length. No one. They let me get on and do my own thing.

    What is being wounded in this dream ?

    Still unable to keep up the momentum when I need it … over the last hurdle.

    What would I like to avoid in this dream ?

    Never being able to fly again. Engines cutting out resulting in a precipitous fall. My flying taking me away from Darlingest or causing her hurt.

    What is being healed in this dream ?

    Wanderlust

    What or who is the helping or healing force/agent in this dream ?

    The flying is a relief, an escape, a chance to get way from the communal, down to earth pleasures of tourism. (everyday life).

    Who or what is my companion in this dream ?

    No one.

    Who are my helpers and guides in life and in my dreams ?

    Darlingest at home. I could do with a partner, a mentor, someone to share my ambitions with.

    What symbols in this dream are important to me ?

    The catholic cathedral. Was I thinking of converting to Catholicism, IS there something I believe in which the atheist Pelczynskis don’t ?

    What actions might this dream be suggesting I consider ?

    Learn ways to stay airborne for longer and take Darlingest along with me !

    What can happen if I work actively with this dream ?

    I’ll go up and stay up and come down when I want to !

    What symbols in this dream are important to me ?

    Flying.

    What is being accepted in this dream ?

    That I like going off on my own. That I like to fly above others. That I like taking risks whilst remaining in control. That sometimes I’m brought down to earth against my will. So I need more fuel and need to know better how to operate my flying machine.

    What choices can I, and will I, make as a result of having this dream ?

    Get the right balance of activities which will keep me airborne and teach me how to operate the controls.

    What questions does this dream ask of me ?

    Where was Darlingest ? Or is the dream only related to work ?

    Why am I not dealing with this situation ?

    To easily distracted. Must know when I am pursuing a subject because it may advance my career and when I am pursuing a subject as a hobby.

    What choices can I, and will I make, as a result of having this dream ?

    Reduce my activities to bread and butter and career movers and try and keep the right mix of flight and landing !

    What actions might this dream be suggesting I consider ?

    Make sure I take off with enough fuel to get me back and in full knowledge of how to control it.

    What do you want to ask us your dream spirits ?

    Take me further !

    Why are you sometimes afraid of us, your dream spirits ?

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