Flying Bed, Talking Birds
I'm flying effortlessly. Well, my bed is. Grab one pillow just before it falls out.
I know that if my bed can fly, this is a dream, so I can fly too. And do a hell of a lot of other things. Doesn't mean I test it yet. Feel a slight nagging to; need to practice until using my full powers becomes automatic--in ANY continuum, waking or dream. Progress comes from exercising one's full skills, more than from radical innovation. But... I like just floating along in bed. Sunny day, grassy plain, rugged hills to the east, a blue line to the west: the sea? I'm floating toward the beach.
A huge flock of birds drifts by. Going just a meter a second faster than me, so they almost seem to hover, though judging by the ground, we're all flying along fast enough. One slow black bird big as a car, like an atmospheric manta. A hawk coasts along right under its tail, riding its wake. Two dogsized ravens orbit the giant. One croaks "Faster, faster." Some of the smaller birds (still big) around us also mutter and grunt "Faster". They make it sound birdy, but it's definitely English.
My bed and the birdflock are above a beach now; north and south, distant desert hills; west the sea; east, a flat, dry-grass valley, nearly treeless. A winding estuary, but the creek feeding it's nearly dry this season.
Humanity? On the beach, a military truck and a delivery van (UPS!) but no roads or buildings in sight--and I can see miles. What, were they airlifted in? Surely they didn't drive 300 km down the beach...
I suspect this is southwest Morocco, onshore from the Canary Islands, right on the Sahara's precarious edge.
If I really DID fully exercise my powers I'd do my shamanic job: develop this lonely place's ecological base so that both people and wild animals could coexist and interact. THIS place wants drought-tolerant trees. Need to add more desert date-palms in mountain canyons and here on the plain, for shade and food but also to make it a bit cooler, more humid, enough to make that winding little creek perennial, or at least last through most dry years. Then try drought-tolerant orchards in the bottomlands for fruit and nuts AND to anchor the people; the few here now are outsiders paid to mine or survey; they don't see the land as theirs, or worth caring for. You need locals committed to greening the valley. A few herders in the rocky hills aren't enough. Reserve a strip along the creek of mixed grass and groves for wild creatures to live in, but also as a sponge and filter for water, and as a migration corridor inland to the desert mountains...
...and also offering side-paths out to meet the newly settled humans, if they're curious. These talking birds are a sign that animals here are evolving into people. Exposure to tech-pioneers on their own terms, not capture or domestication, will speed that.
Wait, what am I planning? This isn't the material world. If these talking birds are dream entities... what sort of wild spirits am I inviting to join us?
Oh, who cares? The place is near-barren now. Welcome them in! Can't do worse than humans.
NOTES IN THE MORNING
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