May 12, 2011

As often happens in my dreams, I find myself inside a monumental, ancient architecture, whose atmosphere is a unique mix of a renaissance theater, a church, a medieval castle, a modern hotel, a university, and a high-tech spaceport. I have just landed there with a spaceship. I have been travelling with my mother, but during the trip we have been separated and now I can’t see her any more, I have no idea where she is. The character of my mother has no personality: she is just the role itself of being my mother, an abstract functional projection. The place is huge and the few signs are in English: I think that my mother won’t be able to find her way to our destination (which is actually unknown to me), and I start to search for her.

There are many floors, connected by old, narrow, dark, stony stairs like those that bring you to the very top of Santa Maria del Fiore church in Florence. Space is not Euclidean: using some secret passages hidden in the walls (when I use them, I can hear the English word “shortcut” in my mind), I can jump from one room to a non-adjacent one on the same floor, and even to a room on a different floor. I can’t discover and use these passages by myself: “helpers” — people who live there and seem to have no personality — guide me through the shortcuts. Helpers are a recurrent theme in my dreams, especially in those set in monumental scenarios: they are typically dressed in a black tunic, and they seem to be extremely wise and serene.

The lower floors are a hybrid between an ancient theater and a medieval castle, with Seraphinian machines like horizontal stairs that continually move forwards and backwards. People at those levels seem to be tourists having fun. At some point I reach a large, dark hall, whose architecture has something of the dance floor of a medieval castle, and something of the Bahai gardens. I ask some people about my mother. Then I move up to the next floor, using again a system of narrow stairs, and meeting in the meanwhile a few Italian researchers that I have never met in the past (the place is supposed to be English speaking). Finally, I reach the upper floor, which seems like a university. I wonder in the rooms and corridors, and I see some young researchers I have met in the past discussing with pen and paper about a mathematical problem. I envy them for the chance they have to exchange their ideas with other people.

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