A premonition, for me, never, ever entails the hairs standing up on my arm or on the back of my neck. Premonitions have come to me either by way of a very vivid dream, or by way of random thoughts that have flashed into my mind. I do not get a chill, the sort that people say they get if a cat walks over their grave. Mine involves thoughts or dreams that were melancholy, which came to fruition.
When I stumbled on this old house in Effingham County, Ga, I had to pull over and snap a few photos of it. It looks almost exactly like the house in my recurring dream that I used to have about my maternal grandmother when I was a child. She and my grandfather lived in Tennessee, out in the country. This road, this house…….is practically identical to the way I remember it. The recurring dream I had was an implied loss……..a loss of them from this world. In the dream, it was implied my grandfather was no longer about………and that my grandmother was going about her daily life in the manner that she knew best: planting vegetables and feeding cows. I always, in the dream, arrived alone, by foot, and would see first the bed sheets that she had hung on the line to dry. She was several yards away, feeding sheep. Even with her back turned to me, she knew I was there, and she would turn around, her white apron flowing in the wind, and she would smile and motion to me to come help her finish up handing out food to the fluffy, white animals.
Years after both of them passed on, I found myself passing this house, and the only real difference between this and the dream (as well as the reality of the farmhouse), is the paved road. When I was small, and certainly long before my existence, the road my grandparents lived on, was a dirt road. I do not know if there is a premonition in this literally, as premonitions generally entail a foreboding of something bad. Maybe the bad here is the ideal of something forgotten, something that should NEVER be forgotten. Their country way of life was not always easy, and being a child of the city, I do not fully relate to the country life………but I feel like I have a certain affinity to it. Maybe I have been given a chance to further appreciate the way of life my grandparents had. My paternal grandparents were city dwellers, and the comparison and contrast between the two ways of life are astounding to me. I appreciate both lifestyles………
Maybe the foreboding is one of a failure to ‘remember’. I have read and heard of the concept of ‘collective memory’ – whereby what our ancestors did is inherently in our own memory – today…here, and now…..when I stumbled on this house, it immediately took me to the recurring dream of my grandmother, and it stirred a longing for living off the land in the manner in which they did. They survived The Great Depression by growing their own food, milking their own cows, and eating their own beef. Maybe the premonition is an indicator that I would do well to learn the same things. With the way our society seems to be floundering here in the United States, I sometimes feel I would be smart to learn their way of life so that I may continue to survive. This may sound excessive, but the good news is that we do still live in a fertile land that makes up the United States, and that may very well be our safety net.
Then again, I could just be longing for that part of my ‘collective memory’. Or, maybe I am just being told by the Universe to preserve the old ways for others. The possibilities are endless.