“Dreams are often most profound when they seem the most crazy.”
― Sigmund Freudb
Everybody must dream. It is vital for our mental health. The psychoanalytic school of psychological thought believes that dreams provide insight to our deepest desires and neuroses that we would never acknowledge in our conscious wakeful state. Freud’s book on the interpretation of dreams is considered a seminal work that is still relevant today over 100 years since its publication.
So what does that mean for an aviation geek? The content of one’s dreams can provide proof of just how much aviation geekdom is part of one’s conscious and subconscious being.
In general, like most people, I don’t remember the content of most of my dreams. That is unless they are abnormally bizarre or are terrifying nightmares.
Last week I woke up remembering, as Freud would call it, a particularly crazy dream. It was long and convoluted. It placed people I know well in the wrong parts of the country. There were many other truly surreal images and plot details. I vividly remember two very good friends driving me to the airport for a flight to San Francisco where they actually live. The geekiest detail was that I remember telling them they would have to drop me at O’Hare’s terminal two so I could catch my flight on America West that was routed via Phoenix. Instead of dropping me off at O’Hare they dropped me off at a high school. I went in to my locker and opened it. I realized that I couldn’t find my French text book. I thought that was okay as I never did my French homework anyway. I tried to get into the main part of the building which was locked off. I realized the school was closed for a holiday. I ran outside but my friends had already left. I panicked as I was so far away from home. Luckily a minivan full of sassy high-school-aged girls came to my rescue. They advised me they could get me part of the way home but they were actually driving in the wrong direction. I was so grateful for their, uh, help!
I woke up thinking what the hell was that all about? The most obvious interpretation was that I will be flying from San Francisco to Chicago via what was America West’s primary hub of Phoenix in a couple of weeks on its successor USAirways.
I have fond memories of America West. The first time I flew it I was headed to Las Vegas for my parents’ 25th wedding anniversary celebration. At the time, America West comped alcoholic beverages on every single flight. For a 21-year-old impoverished college student that was a huge plus! I also flew America West to Las Vegas for my sister’s wedding. Good times.
I got upgraded to first class several times. America West was also particularly generous to the travel-agent community by providing deeply discounted industry passes.
America West was founded shortly after the deregulation of the US airline industry. It became a major national carrier that avoided imploding, unlike most other upstarts of that era. The America West DNA still survives. USAirways uses the radio call sign “Cactus” which was originally assigned to America West. Phoenix is still a vital hub of the USAirways route network.
I’ll probably never analyze the dream fully, but I don’t need to spend the coin on a shrink to get its gist: My aviation geekdom is deep-seated and “particularly crazy.”