End of the World dream

This morning I had the most vivid and exciting dream I’ve had in a long time.¬†

Zach and I were in a large chamber atop a tower, maybe in Mexico. We had ascended by climbing 150 steps–the place was a landmark we had come to see. There were about a dozen other people with us, and we all knew that the world was going to end that day. It was an astronomical catastrophe of some sort: rogue planet crashing into Earth, Sun exploding, not sure. Scientists knew it was coming, and people all over the world were preparing in various ways.

The people in our place were mostly calm, talking to each other in low voices. Zach and I sat next to a wall, holding hands, but I was curious and kept going to a big arched window to see what was happening, then recounting what I saw to Zach. First the horizon was rimmed by hundreds of small rainbows, like the scalloping on the edge of an old-fashioned pie plate. Then the sky got dark and thunderous. In the distance on the scrubby plain below, geysers of steam and water burst through the soil. I looked down and saw a herd of brown-and-white cattle running in confusion. Then I looked up and saw that the sun was a strange pinkish-white color, ringed in a glowing aura, and although Sol was not appreciably larger or hotter, I knew that it was time.

I went back and sat next to Zach. I said, “I hope you’ve had a good life. You’re a good man,” and we kissed (his glasses dug into my cheekbone). Then everything went dark.

I woke up in the same chamber, but on a cot. Through the window I saw an unnaturally blue sky. It was exhilarating being alive, but I my first words were, “Wtf? What happened?” There was a sense of anticlimax, almost chagrin; if we had all thought the world was going to end and it didn’t, I might feel rather silly, like those “end of the world” sects that have to keep revising the due date when their prophecies¬† annoyingly fail to come true.

I ran to the window. Our tower was now surrounded by dozens or hundreds of structures: round buildings made of clay or porcelain, huge metal constructions, elaborate palaces of bricks and glass, examples of many wildly varying architectural traditions all plunked down cheek by jowl. Then another form, like a huge metal eel studded with glass globes, glided silently past just above eye level.

The others were looking out the window and trying to figure out where we were (“Is this real?” “Is this heaven?” and so on). I ran to the opposite side of the room, which had been solid before but was now one huge window. I called out, “I think I know what happened–we were rescued by a race that travels around the galaxy, saving people from dying worlds!” The view was of a huge landscape (think <i>Ringworld</i> or Jack Vance’s <i>Big Planet</i>): ocean, mountains, and this surreal city that stretched on and on, with flying machines and spaceships. Zach and I were jumping up and down with excitement, thinking of the extraordinary adventure that was about to begin. (Even better than Iceland, although that may have been the source of the geysers.)

When we woke up and I told him, he said, “Don’t tell that one to my sister. [fundamentalist evangelical] She’ll say it was the Rapture.” But I’m pretty sure it was aliens.