It’s been with me since I was 3 or 4.

I don’t know what or where it came from, it’s just always been there.

And, as I’ve grown up, it’s grown up with me.

It’s unsettling, but not scary. Unnerving, but not frightening.

It starts with me in a car. Everything’s fine, I’m in a familiar place, but not too familiar, like somewhere I’ve visited, or an area that I’ve traveled through many times.

When I was little, my little brother and I would be in the car, and suddenly, without warning, there’s no one at the wheel, and the only people in the car are the two of us. I have to drive, or we’re going to crash.

And, we’re going down a steep hill.

In the childhood version, even though I don’t know how and am so young, and driving looks terribly adult and complicated, I drive.

In the adult version, I’m driving. Confidently motoring along an area I’m familiar with.

But then.

I get lost, or the highway becomes terribly complicated and I end up lost, or off the road, or going the wrong way down a very busy freeway.

And again, there are very steep hills involved.

The dream either ends, or the brakes fail and there is a slow speed accident that leaves large dents in both cars.

I know what’s going to happen, I see it coming, but there isn’t a thing I can do to prevent it.

A couple of weeks ago at work, a sweet young man came in looking for a car. He was captivated by a pre-owned car with a manual transmission.

There was only one problem, the kid didn’t drive a stick.

I am of the opinion that everybody should know how to drive one. I feel like it’s one of those life skills, like reading and writing cursive that is fading from society and when it’s gone, we will regret it.

Plus driving a stick is a really fun, much more pure form of driving.

So, I asked him if he’d like to learn.

He said yes, which made me like him even more. Plus knowing how to drive a car increases the chances of purchase.

He did pretty well, and we scheduled another visit the next evening.

The next day I drove a jeep to work with a manual transmission and thought it would be good to let him give it a go; so that he got the experience of the different feeling of a stick shift and clutch.

Since it was a personal car, I decided to stay in the parking lot at work.

At first, he did well. Then I think maybe he got a little tired. We were among a few employee cars (a bad idea) and he turned between two cars. And he was driving slowly, but got closer to them.

And closer.

And closer.

And suddenly, he’s heading right for one and I’m sure he going to hit it. I know what’s going to happen, I see it coming, but there isn’t a thing I can do to prevent it.

And in that moment, I am awake, but living that darn dream — I am telling him to turn or stop and internally freaking right the heck out. Literally hysterical inside my head.

Luckily he is somehow able to turn away at the very last moment. That dream collision is averted.

For the rest of the night, I am halfway between hysterical laughing and hysterically shrieking. I am able to keep it to only laughter.

But you know what Gentle Reader, I haven’t had that dream once since.

Thanks for your time.

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