I don’t know what happened.
One moment I was in my apartment getting ready for bed, and the next I’m here.
I remember exactly what I was doing: the cat had puked into my slipper. She always does that. Seriously, I should just get an extra pair of cheap shoes and put them out so she can barf into those and I won’t have to wear the ones I just cleaned when they’re still wet and all.
So I’d cleaned the slippers, washed my hands, and brushed my teeth. I was looking at myself in the bathroom mirror, thinking that I was getting old. There are gray streaks in my hair now, and lines on my face. Mind you, not too many, and most of them are around the eyes, where you can always say they’re laugh wrinkles or whatever you call them. My knee was giving me hell again, like it always does when it’s wet and cold outside, and my boobs—seriously. Didn’t anyone in charge consider gravity when they decided to give women boobs? I mean, really?
No wonder we get invisible when we reach a certain age. Who wants to see boobs that lost their battle with Planet Earth. No one. Not even me, and the stupid things are a part of me.
It was raining. I clearly recall how it was splattering against the window, making that soothing noise that always lulls me to sleep right away. I’d brought out another quilt, and I could hardly wait to slip into my bed and snuggle up with the cat. I’d put on fresh sheets, too, which always makes going to bed an extra treat.
I like sleeping. I really do. I could sleep twelve hours every night, easily, and not be the worse for it. I could stay in bed all the time, the covers drawn up to my ears, always nearly asleep, half in a dream and half listening to the rain or the sound of traffic from the street below.
I’ve been thinking that I’m still there, maybe still dreaming. That would make sense. I’m dreaming this. This is nothing but a very long dream. I’m stuck in that place between waking and sleep, and this is where my dreams took me.
That thought is really the only one that makes sense, and the only one that keeps me sane.
Just think: one minute you’re in your bathroom, staring at your boobs in dismay, and then WHAM you’re on a beach. And it’s not just any old beach, it’s a special beach, a weirdo beach, not a beach you’d find anywhere on Earth.
It’s a beach with lavender sand, and the water isn’t any shade of blue or green or gray, it’s red. A deep, crimson red, like blood, like blood from a vein even, not the bright, gushy blood you get from an artery. It’s the dark, deep color of a garnet. There are trees lining the beach, but I’ve never seen that kind before. They’re a bit like palm trees, but then again not. Their fronds seem to be moving on their own accord, even against the wind, as if they’re alive. It’s very creepy. And they aren’t green as they should be, but cobalt blue. So is the grass under them. Bright blue. So blue it nearly hurts the eye.
The creepiest thing of all though is the sky.
There are wheels and wheels of galaxies spinning up there, bright and sparkling galaxies, and they seem as close as the Moon would, on Earth. And even though the sky is dark, down here, on this damned beach, it seems the sun is shining. Only there isn’t any sun at all.
There’s a slight breeze from this freaky ocean, a breeze that smells of flowers and wet soil, not, as it should, of seawater. And there are no shells. Nothing. Nada. It’s as clean as a private beach at a very expensive resort.
Sometimes I think I can hear voices from somewhere under the trees, but I can’t make out what they are saying. Every time I walk toward them, they fall silent or seem to move away.
I’m all alone. I’ve been alone for what seems like a small eternity. And I don’t know what happened. I’m here in this place in my pajamas. I’m not hungry, not sleepy, not thirsty, and time doesn’t seem to pass.
Maybe I’m dead.
Maybe I died there in my bed, after falling asleep, and no one noticed, not even me. Maybe my decaying body is still there, and the cat is starving.
Or maybe I’m just dreaming, and in a moment I’ll wake up, and the little beast will be there calling for her breakfast.
Or maybe I’m no longer on Earth.
Maybe I’m really on a different planet, transported here for a reason I still need to figure out, and I’ll never go back home again.
I think it’s time to leave the beach and venture inland. Who knows what I’ll find. Maybe there are others here. I’m tired of guessing and being alone.
And I really, seriously hope someone feeds the cat.