Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Ol’ Robbo had another one of his patented weirdo dreams last evening.  Since they seem to be popular reading among regular friends of the decanter, I thought I would pass it along.

In it, I found myself in the front hall of the parental house I in which I spent the majority of my misspent yoot down in Texas.  This time, however, it was my house and I was interviewing a fellah who had come to mow the lawn.  He was a tall, slick, smiling man.  Although all I wanted was to have the grass cut, he wouldn’t stop telling me all the other things I really ought to have done, both inside and outside.

Finally, I managed to bustle him out the door, smiling somewhat less than he had been before.   But as he left, I suddenly remembered that there was some particular patch of grass that, for some reason or other, I didn’t want cut.  I started to walk round the side of the house in order to catch him up, but by this time he was on one of those three-wheeled motorcycles that are becoming fashionable and was already well along a dirt road that seemed to run into the back yard.

I started walking up the road and suddenly realized just how large the yard was – acres and acres stretching away in every direction and, for some reason, a lot of cars parked around a gate up ahead of me.

I noticed some other things, too, including a long wire fence along the side of the dirt road and several untended garden plots of which I had no recollection.  I found myself looking forward to planting the gardens during the next growing season.

Finally, I turned and looked at the side of the house.   The basement (we didn’t actually have one in our real house) was open to the outside through a curved, brick-lined entrance that gave it a kind of grotto look.  “Oh, no,” I thought, “There might be bees.”  But then I remembered that the passage from the basement to the rest of the house had been sealed up from the inside so felt that there now wasn’t a problem.

I then looked at the upper floor and beheld attached to teh wall a road sign that said “I-190 This Exit” with an arrow.  (I-190 is the interstate that runs out of O’Hare and links up with the highway system around the western side of Chicago.  A couple years ago I had a case out in western Illinois and whenever I drove to Peoria or Moline from Chi I always started on this road.  Why it should remain in my braims now, I really couldn’t say.)

Finally, I topped a little swell in the path and looked out again at the yard.  It occurred to me then that I had completely forgotten why I didn’t want that particular patch mown.  In fact, I could see the patch in front of me – rayther tall grass and a few weeds – and it certainly looked ripe for the cutting.  I couldn’t see the lawn guy anymore anyway.

“Oh, to hell with it,” I said to myself and started to turn back.

And then, as they say, I woke up.

I suppose all this had something to do with the ongoing construction work at Port Swiller Manor, a job estimated back at the beginning of June to take about six weeks, but with which they still aren’t done, although they’re now close enough to finished that we were able to have dinner out on the new porch last evening.  All I know is that the day when the port-swiller driveway no longer sports a Port-O-John is going to be a red-letter one ’round here.