Sunday, February 25, 2007

Patrick's Dream

Patrick has been recovering from an operation and feeling not too well. This morning, he woke up happy. He said he'd been dreaming about Duluth. In his dream, it was bigger than the real Duluth and had a shipyard that built boats of every size from commercial fishing boats to the big lakers. (There is a shipyard in Duluth, but it does repairs rather than ship building, and commercial fishing has almost entirely vanished from the Great Lakes.) Pat was in the shipyard photographing, under a sky as intensely blue as the sky in South Dakota.

"Did you have to sneak in?" I asked.

"No," he said. "They were proud of what they were doing and wanted everyone to see it. There was a big visitors' center, with people to explain the shipyard. You got a permit, and then you could go everywhere and take photographs. You could go on top of buildings, and the maintenance workers would show you the good views. The center had a little gift shop, full of workers' kinds of gifts. Shipbuilder's gloves, shipbuilder's caps, the kinds of things you and I like."

We had a hotel room in Duluth, Patrick said. "It was small and spartan, with a bare wood floor, but clean. It was a corner room, with windows on two walls overlooking the harbor."

The real Duluth Harbor is a wonderful place, but not especially open to visitors, especially after 9/11. When you approach the company-owned docks, you meet a security guard, who does not let you go any farther. There are nice hotels in the city, but not workers' hotels with amazing views. Patrick dreamed a utopia, and I must say I like the sound of it.


Post a Comment

<< Home