Tag Archive for: daydreams


One of my many incarnations (or personalities, as mentioned in a recent post here) is as a farmer.  Not just any farmer, mind you, a homesteader — self sufficient, living off grid,  growing and preserving my own crops, and raising livestock.  This dream has been around almost as long as my vision of being an acclaimed novelist.

The writing dream was born one summer Saturday morning as I was sitting at a long heavy table in my local library.  As I breathed in the heady aroma– exhaled by paper, leather, and cloth bindings; old wood; and possibly furniture wax– I looked at the shelves filled with the work of writers ranging from

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long ago to the newest best-sellers.  I dreamed of one day being right up there among them, my work hanging out with the likes of Mark Twain, Charles Dickens, and Victoria Holt.  Even then, before I ever even hit my teenage years, I was a complex being.

My grandparents and great-grandparents had farms.  A city kid, I loved the trips to the country, the fresh food, the barnyards, the animals.  I would ride around on an imaginary horse and dream of a life like that.  Years later, while living in Alaska, I met homesteaders. This tough breed built their own log cabins and lived an independent lifestyle.  They hunted, trapped, raised livestock, and gardened in the short but intense growing season.  They had huge stacks of firewood for stoves that provided both heat and the means to cook.  It was a dream life.  Of course, they had no indoor plumbing and their showers were homemade cubicles in the front yard rigged to a bucket and a 55-gallon drum.  But that was a small matter, easy to minimize when I lived in an apartment with an electric stove, central heat, and a fully functioning bathroom.

I presented my case to my military spouse.  It would be an adventure, I said.  A great life in an unspoiled environment.  My spouse did not agree.  Instead of getting a bit of inexpensive land and researching cold weather chicken breeds, he completed his enlistment, got his discharge from the Army, and took us back to the lower 48.  He went into sales and I wrote short stories about raising chickens in the snow.

When we later went our separate ways, I went into journalism instead of farming.  I do, however, watch Homestead Rescue frequently, and I once wrote about a goat farm.

Nowadays, I am retired and I find myself still mentally switching between homesteader and literary giant (all those other personalities take a back seat to these two).  I look at ads for small-holdings (that’s what we homesteaders call small pieces of acreage), then get a cup of coffee and sit down to write that best-selling novel that will one day be taught in literature classes.  I did write a novel, but so far no literature classes – or big publishing houses – have begun clamoring at my feet.

I am a die-hard optimist, however, so I am promoting my novel and writing another.  And I just got done feeding the chickens, goats, cows, cats, guineas, dogs, and chinchillas.  Now, I am going to take an allergy pill, leave my son’s farm, and go back to my own house where the only other living things are a philodendron and a peace lily.  I may stop by the library on the way and visit my good friends, Mark, Charles – and Vicky.



Could I have multiple personality disorder?

Maybe so, because I am having trouble keeping track of who I am.  See, I met a lady whose daughter wants to learn to ride horses and my mind flashed back to days and daydreams gone by.  One of those dreams was of riding cross country on horseback, camping along the way.  I could see it; I might could still do it.  Of course, I don’t have a horse, I don’t know anyone here who does have a horse, and I can’t even camp out on an air mattress on my own floor without paying a mighty price.  Caught up in the throes of this personality, however, I immediately went downstairs and checked on the well-being of the saddle I can’t quite seem to give up.  It was alive and well and beaming out hope.

I never went on that horseback trip back in those days because I was doing the whole 40-hour work week thing, broken up by a two-week vacation in the summer with the kids.   See?  That’s yet another personality.  I enjoyed writing for a living, and I enjoyed my children.  We had a blast on those vacations.

Now I am retired.  The 40-hour routine is done with, and the children have long flown the coop.  I now have the freedom to reinvent myself however I choose.  Well, there are limitations because most of my would-be inventions involve substantial amounts of money – which I don’t currently have (enter the lottery winning personality).


A few days ago, I watched a movie called “Dog,” and I got right on Google and started browsing websites looking for puppies and envisioning my solitary life with my faithful canine companion.  I briefly considered a career as an animal communicator.  I’ve read about that, but so far, I have never intuited anything animals might want to pass along to me or others.  So, I guess that plan is shot to heck.

Today I was watching a movie about a former movie star who escaped her old-folks home (these days they are called retirement communities or assisted living) and went on an impromptu adventure to France.  So, I promptly checked my passport to be sure I could just jump and run at a moment’s notice.  Again, the money thing reared its ugly little head.

Over the past couple of years, I have imagined a semi-reclusive life in the mountains growing herbs and creating healing ointments and elixers.  In that particular life movie, Bambi and the racoons all gather round my doorstep awaiting my company, while birds sing on the porch rails and chipmunks scurry around my feet.

In a different reel, I am traveling the country seeing stuff and selling books at independent book stores from coast to coast.  In yet another, I own only a suitcase, a carryon, and good shoes.  I disembark from a 30-day cruise and climb onto a bus for a European tour.  Then I spend a couple of months in a cottage in Scotland, and maybe back onto a ship for another cruise.

As I replaced my passport, dusted my saddle, and checked the herb garden, I realized that these competing visions of the future might not be what most people experience, so I sat down to really analyze this issue.  And that’s when I came up with MPD.   The only problem there is that all my personalities are perfectly well aware of the others, and no one is in charge.

Ideally, I would integrate these folks into one free spirit who wears silk palazzo pants while riding a horse into the mountains to feed the deer and forage for wild herbs to make medicines to take on the ship when I sail away to summer in the south of France.

But therapists aren’t cheap either, so I guess we will all have to try to live together peacefully.   Or maybe it isn’t a disorder at all.  Maybe it’s Walter Mitty syndrome.  Or maybe they are all really choices and I have some fun times ahead.  The only problem is that troublesome issue of money.  You know what they say, “Money is the root of all adventure.”