Sunday, September 02, 2007

Spare rooms

Last week SusieJ wrote about a dream in which she showed her mother around her lake house and discovered that it had nine floors. I left a comment saying that I often used to have dreams about opening a door in our last (small) house and discovering that there were several more rooms that we had simply forgotten about. The dream would always end with a wonderful feeling of relief and a resolution to make more use of the masses of space I had rediscovered.
Now, we live in house with rooms in the attic that we really don't ever use and so I have moved on to dreams about extra apartments in town that we'd forgotten we had - "you know, we really should rent out that penthouse flat we have lying empty in the city centre, the extra income might come in handy."
Then yesterday, I read this post about a man in Turkey who broke through a wall at the back of a house and discovered "a room that he'd never seen,
which led to still another, and another. Eventually, spelunking archeologists found a maze of connecting chambers that descended at least 18 stories and 280 feet beneath the surface, ample enough to hold 30,000 people
Bldgblog points out, with a link to a previous post, that this might be the ultimate undiscovered room fantasy. I knew that some of my friends have had my undiscovered room dream too, (do you?) but when I followed the link and read all of the comments, I discovered (with some dismay, because nobody likes to discover that their fantasy world is, well, common) that it is a well-known phenomenon. One of the comments even had a link to this cartoon:

Slow Wave Live, originally uploaded by ranjit.

But as one of the other commenters sort of says, maybe the internet version of the fantasy is to discover a new site with links that lead to untold reserves of new pages and blogs and and surfing delight. Only to come back and discover that it has all gone 404.

12 comments:

christina said...

Oh yes, I've had the "extra rooms you didn't kow you had" dream several times. I didn't know it was so common. I also often dream about looking out my living room window and realizing I've had a view of the ocean all along but just never noticed. I wonder what it all means??

Ms Mac said...

Yes, I've had that dream too. How very fascinating! I know what'll be googling all afternoon now.

Lesley said...

Christina: I think it must have something to do with exploiting unexplored potential, which actually turns out to be non-existent.

Ms Mac: I'm off to google "spelunk": it appears in that quote and I have no idea what it means.

Anonymous said...

BK: More rooms!? Great, now I have to clean them and keep them tidy.

SusieJ said...

OK -- this is fascinating. Comforting to know we are all having the same dream -- and I love this dream. I want to have it again and again, and it is just fascinating to discover what I didn't know was there. I too am curious, and will be googling.

Anonymous said...

BK again: ...it also reminds me, in reverse, of a Cortázar story called House Taken Over about a couple who feel a presence in one of the rooms of their home. Something invisible and strong. So they close the door and stop using that room. But it moves around, occupying more and more of the house. Eventually, they are left with only a small bedroom and the kitchen. And finally, they lock the house and leave, never to return.

This feels like the flipside of your dreams, the contraction following the expansion. Be careful what you wish for...

Lesley said...

BK: It does seem to be a fantasy that has been taken up by many authors. Lots of people cite Foucault's Pendulum. But as I said, I don't dream about new rooms any more, like you I have enough trouble trying to keep the ones I do have tidy. My fantasy at the moment would be to discover that one of our immediate neighbours had left us their house. We could then have it knocked down and use the land to dig a swimming pool.

SusieJ: I liked the fact that you were showing your mother around. I wish my Dad would show up in one of my property baron dreams.

Antipodeesse said...

Well I am happy to report that I've never had that dream, and I think you are all very strange people indeed.

I do have the crumbling teeth dream though...

meredic said...

I hadn't realised what a common dream the 'extra room I never noticed before' thing was. Are the men in the white coats coming for both of us then?

Lesley said...

Meredic: No we're normal, but I've alerted the authorities about Antipo.

Teuchter said...

I thought I was unique in having the recurrent extra-rooms-dream - but it seems I'm in excellent company.

Do you find the rooms are different every time you have the dream?

The strangest episode happened recently.
In reality - my mother had been staying with us for a couple of weeks and I'd put her on a plane back to Scotland a few days before.
In the dream - I discovered she'd been living in the attic, which was nothing like our actual loft space, because she didn't want to go back north.
I actually phoned her to make sure she was safely home :-O

Lesley said...

Teuchter: And this was at the time when you had those other little visitors in your attic I take it. Stranger and stranger!
I think the providential extra rooms are always just empty spaces in my dreams.