beach bums, originally uploaded by ken.udle.

My dog dreams. Sometimes I see him lying in a comfortable spot and his leg will twitch, or he’ll be making quiet sounds. I imagine he’s dreaming of food, or playing. What ever it is, I’m certain it’s not some long-term goal like eventually making a break out the door and scaring the neighbor’s cat so badly that she’ll never come back on our porch. Nope, I’m sure charlie is dreaming of treats.

I’ve been dreaming too but unlike charlie, food doesn’t figure too prominently in my dreams. In my dreams I’m searching for something or trying to make people understand something important. If there’s a resolution to these dreams, I never remember it when I wake. This isn’t anything particularly deep of course. I’ve been trying to answer some out some important questions and until I do, I’ll keep having these dreams.

Until recently, I had a plan, a set of goals that seemed reasonable,attainable even. My retirement years were to be spent pursuing photographic art. The plan included formal training, an aggressive timeline to purchase the right equipment, and rough ideas for places to document in pictures. We’re told to visualize having attained a major goal. I did that often – I’d see me heading down the road in a Cooper mini towards some small town where I’d stay a few nights in a B&B exploring the area and capturing its spirit in a digital file. Later those great shots would be turned into an ebook or an article in a magazine. I’ll have left my mark by creating something useful.

Life happens and sometimes dreams have to change. (I have to admit that as soon as I typed that, I wondered did I really want it that badly in the first place? I don’t know, I thought I did). I don’t need to lay out the details why, what’s key is that recent events made me realize that particular dream wasn’t as reasonable or attainable as I’d thought. My son says “art requires sacrifice”. He is an artist and so knows from personal experience. I realized I wasn’t as prepared for the struggle as I thought I was. When faced with a choice of Fight or Flight, I followed my dog’s lead and chose Flight (or as I prefer to say avoidance) which of course was the easiest option.

“Easy! Seriously, the easy way?” Well, yes.

However, another way to look at it is that a change of course was necessary, if not essential, and that elements of that earlier dream are still feasible. I simply need to replace the small town B&B with mountain vistas, the Cooper Mini with a 4-wheel drive, and Art with well-made thoughtful pictures that someone may choose to hang in their home or office.

I haven’t figured all this out just yet and I have to admit the transition wasn’t an easy one. I sincerely appreciated the positive feedback to my last blog and in particular the subsequent notes from Sabrina. For now, I think I’ll join charlie in the bedroom. He can dream of tasty treats, I’ll see if I can’t answer those remaining questions.

1 comment
  1. sabrina said:

    Dreams are important, Ken, sometimes I don’t think we allow ourselves to dream enough and we get stuck thinking in only one way. The past year has shown me that there are many paths to living my dream. I’ve let go of long-held beliefs so as to grab on to more concrete forms. It isn’t easy and I agree with your son–art does involve sacrifice. The more I am around true artists the more I understand this. But I also see how much joy it brings and how these artists wouldn’t choose any other life.

    Love your image. It’s no postcard 🙂

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