It was an odd request really. Make a bunch of copies of the May 29, 1978, edition of the Greenville, S.C., News and stack them up to be picked up. But why the Greenville News? I’ve never even worked there.
Oh, well, I found Sylvia, the newsroom clerk, and asked her to start making copies. She headed to the large copier. She was just getting started when I woke up.
What’s going on? I thought. Then I noticed Molly, our beagle who sleeps next to me, was having a dog dream and had bumped me a couple of times. I was wide awake, lying in my bed, and no copies were being made.
That’s how it all started about a month ago. Since then, I’ve had the same dream several times. It’s so vivid that it seems real, and it always starts with the same May 29, 1978, edition of the Greenville News.
Some of the pieces of the dream have a real-life counterpart. But the date means nothing to me. In 1978 I was working at a newspaper in upstate New York and had never been to South Carolina.
There was a real-life Sylvia – Sylvia Zuniga, a newsroom clerk in San Diego, when I was city editor of the paper there from 1982 to 1988. The woman in my recurring dream looks like Sylvia, and she is making copies in a modern floor-to-ceiling glass and brick newsroom that looks like the one in San Diego.
My connection to South Carolina didn’t come until 1989, when I moved to Anderson to be editor of the paper. I worked there 15 years, about 30 miles from Greenville, but never visited the Greenville News building.
Last weekend the dream went on so long that Sylvia had made several hundred copies. She had just brought several large stacks to my desk and asked if I thought they would be enough when I woke up.
So do dreams mean anything? Some researchers say dreams most likely serve no real purpose, while others say they do. Dream interpretation has become a popular activity. There are even dream dictionaries and books that offer tips for understanding dreams.
Somehow, I have trouble thinking there is much deep meaning in a recurring dream about making copies of a newspaper.
When I asked Jenny over breakfast what she thought my dream meant, she suggested it meant I had gone nuts. I think she was kidding.
Maybe I should just keep my dream to myself.
T. Wayne Mitchell, publisher of the Gazette, can be reached by phone at 662-534-6321 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.