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Hop to the Shah

Dreamed 2010/5/18 by Wayan

The peace negotiations in Europe are dragging on. But what war are they trying to end, exactly? I'm not sure. The Old World, certainly. But Pakistan, or Iran? Many of the diplomats are cynical, think there's no hope of peace now.

One even tells a couple of Green Party representatives who are pagan anarchists "Save your witchcraft for the next war, with China." Great, they're already expecting a second war? Isn't this pessimism a bit self-fulfilling? They're not even trying.

I decide direct action is the only antidote for all this cynical talk.

So I fly to Pakistan, and bound down the main street of Peshawar that runs west out of town--all the way to Tehran!

When I said I bound, I meant bound. I'm better than a steroid kangaroo: 50 meters high, and nearly 100 meters west. The Spiderman of hop! Over houses and little shops, between decorated trucks and dusty busses. Each bounce brings me closer to the Persian border.

Yes, it's called Persia again. There's a new Shah in the palace in Tehran. The more things change...

I try not to squash people or cars as I bounce; a dance, really. But a potentially deadly dance. My shamanic powers make me so formidable I may stop this war yet! I plan to threaten the Shah first. But not the last! Whoever it takes.

I hop the border in one long arc. The eastern desert bounces by. Endless flats, alkali lakes, snowy peaks floating on the dusty horizon... I love the long view!

Sketch of a dream by Wayan: a figure making hundred-yard hops down a desert road passes a huge billboard showing a bearded, scowling man before a sihouette of Iran.
At sixteen hops a mile, I'm as fast as a light plane; it's a surprisingly brief journey through the long valleys under the Zagros Mountains. Hop, hop. Pastures, farms, towns. Slowly it grows greener...

Late in the day, as the light blushes rose, the outskirts of Tehran leap by. The new palace looms--so pretentious it's hard to miss! An oily diet often makes the body politic break out in gilded executive pimples.

I pause outside, under a freeway cloverleaf. The neighborhood looks so scruffy! This could almost be a run-down part of Los Angeles. Though is that bad? On the sidewalk, a couple kisses. A generation ago, they'd have been beaten up.

Despite this rich, crass, bellicose king and the trash in the streets, at least the brutal shadow of theocracy is gone. Am I so sure this is a dysfunctional alternate world? Maybe it's just a generation in our future.

I mean... one hop at a time!

NOTES IN THE MORNING



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