I’ve been out of school for over a decade now, but I still have nightmares about it. Some people have nightmares about getting up in front of a crowd only to discover they aren’t wearing any pants. I have nightmares about being back at university and not being able to find my lecture halls, missing classes or assignments, or completely forgetting I was enrolled in a class and having to do a whole semester’s worth of work in a short amount of time.
Totally normal stuff.
Sometimes, I dream about high school. Sometimes I am my current 30-something year-old self, back in high school, to “upgrade” my high school diploma. Or someone, somewhere, realized that I was missing a credit, and shouldn’t have been able to graduate, so I had to go back 15+ years later and complete it.
Last night, I dreamt I was back in high school. But with a twist: pandemic-related social distancing.
Schools here are closed, and probably will remain closed for the remainder of the year. In my dream, school was open, but people were supposed to practice social distancing. Except, no one was taking it seriously.
I was in high school, navigating hallways and cafeteria lines, trying to maintain my two metres of distance between myself and other students, but no one cared. I was moving away from people as they approached, as if I had a protective bubble around myself. There were markers on the floor of the elevator, showing where to stand. People were standing too close, and it made me very anxious.
That’s it, that was the nightmare. I was back in high school for an unknown reason, and people weren’t practicing social distancing.
Also, there was someone in the cafeteria line picking at a piece of cake that she didn’t intend to purchase. Break off a piece, eat it, lick fingers, rinse and repeat. Leave the picked-over cake behind. That was weird too.
I took chicken & waffles from the cafeteria. Except the chicken was dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets and not crispy, fattening fried chicken. And the only vegetables available as a side dish was in the form of coleslaw and potato salad.
Nightmare situation: people standing too close, poor cafeteria etiquette, and no vegetables.