Nilah Ate the Blog

Illustration, books, and baking… probably

I have recurring dreams.

One of these recurring dreams is Jurassic Park.

Why, oh why do I dream about Jurassic Park?

It is one of my favorite movies, but I tell you now, it makes a terrible dream scenario, especially my subconscious’s version of it.

A day in JP is just like a day at any theme park. You get there in the morning so you can spend the day. You walk around. You take pictures with the more docile dinosaurs.

The majority of your time is rather peaceful.

But you’re always listening for screams. The screams will tell you if one of the dangerous ones are coming through.

The dinosaurs just walk around freely. They can go anywhere. There are no cages. I don’t know how this place stays open.

I prefer when it’s the T-rex. She’s big, easy to see coming, and there’s just one of her.

More frequent, of course, are the velociraptors.

People are good about yelling to let everyone know. You scatter. Find someplace really good to hide where the dinosaur can’t see you, but you can see it. You’re paying to see dinosaurs, after all. Just don’t get eaten.

They’re going to eat somebody. It doesn’t matter as long as it’s not you.

Eventually it’s over. You get away and run to some other part of the park, or the dinosaur moves along, and you continue your day.

The dream plays out in a series of snippets, brief moments of my day. In the final dream, I was waiting for my mom to pick me up and someone spotted a velociraptor. I shouted, OUTSIDE! I was herding a friend who was panicking to a hiding place. That’s when I woke up.

Alone in the dark, it takes a moment to remember that dinosaurs are extinct.

I lie in bed and try to process quietly so I don’t wake my pets. Try to remember what is real and what is not. The dog turns over in sleep. The cat has noticed I’m awake. Their little friendly sounds make my heart race. I have to pee. I pretend I don’t until I can convince myself it’s safe to move. I wonder why I even had this stupid dream and review everything I ate the previous day.

I check my phone. My friends in California are awake. They’re in the group chat talking about learning languages and how English is dumb.

And for just a little while, in this post-Jurassic world that only exists at 2:20 am, none of the problems in my life seem nearly as bad as getting eaten.

Nilah is an author and illustrator from the United States.


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