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Self Portait

Pre-War Paris

Posted on 2019.03.09 at 17:38
Current Location: 67526
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Dreamed that Dorian and I were in the attic of our house in Ellinwood and she ran across a yellowed photograph of a famous bandleader adjacent a very young version of my mother at an outdoor bandstand. When she asked me about it I explained that famous bandleader was my great uncle. We decided to visit the historic bandstand, which was now the centerpiece in a History of Americana Music museum, inside an enormous casino nearby.

The bandstand was the centerpiece of the casino, having been built entirely around it where the old center square once stood. The place was so big in fact, we were on an indoor tram which drove us around the various sites within. Pulling up to the bandstand stop I told Dorian I'd like to spend some time alone there, so she took the tram to the shops as I disembarked, standing next to one of the museum employees as I took in the photographs and information about the historic bandstand, looking much like it did back in the days of my famous great uncle.

That's when the scene changed, and the museum employee and I were standing in the exact same spot, only outside in a sepia-toned scene, with all the walls and photographs surrounding the bandstand gone, replaced by an open field, and a suddenly very busy bandstand, which was standing adjacent a metal building with barn doors filled with an entire troupe of singers and dancers and stagehands all engaged in various activities and costumes. The museum employee and I suddenly realized we'd been transported to pre-war Paris, and they had no idea the horror about to befall them.

We donned the uniforms of the stagehands and tried to blend in helping with the sets and material movement without getting in the way of the men and women practicing their sets - it was all very busy. In the odd moments we had to ourselves, we were scouring newspapers for the date and trying to figure out how to alert those around us to the rising German threat.

Pre-war Paris was a such a carefree place, filled with laughter and gaiety that our whispered warnings were just laughed off as the local population continued to party endlessly without worry, but we were filled with dread not knowing how to get to our own time before the German invasion. I thought wistfully of Dorian, wondering what time looked like for her as we'd seemingly been here for months. The other stagehands had turned violet toward the museum employee and myself, often attempting to attack us with chains and knives during breaks - thankfully the museum employee and I always traveled together and seemed fairly adept at disarming our angry assailants, but the attacks were becoming far too common, and added unnecessary worry to our seemingly untenable situation.

I knew the end was near when a photograph of Hitler in a single-seat, diesel-punk armored transport (looking a lot like the open-wheel racers of that era) was circulating in the papers, dark goggles and all. He was calling it the future of a highly mobile military, he named it the Brennt.

I awoke knowing all was lost, and that history was indeed doomed to repeat itself.

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