When I was a young girl (around 11 years old I think) I began having a series of dreams that all started and ended exactly the same way:
Dense fog blankets the landscape and obscures landmarks – a dense white space where all senses are deadened and any sense of direction lost. Through the billowing fog, a hoof-beat drumming, coming from no direction and all directions at once, surrounds my small pajama clad form. Out of the mist steps a large bay destrier, ridden by a battered knight. The horse has a proudly arched neck, and each hoof is as large as my head. The rider, on his seat towering above my head, carries a white shield with a black barbed cross on it. He gazes down at me through piercing blue eyes bearing an expression equal parts patience and exasperation. The corner of his mouth under a heavy mustache quirks with the ghost of a smile as he leans over to stretch out a heavily muscled and scared forearm. Not knowing what else to do, I reach up and clasp my arm to his; he swings me up behind the cantle with ease. I reach forward trying to wrap my arms around his waist as the great horse leaps into a run. For a time, the only reality is the rhythm of the horse and the pulse of his hoof-beats. Gradually the fog clears and I am set down in the landscape of my dream. The dreams changed nightly, and were, for me, normal dreams. When the night’s dreaming has run its course I would look up to see my knight there and once again I would be swept into the saddle to take the run in reverse, ending in the fog.
Every single night for nearly four years this battle-weary knight came to ride me to and from my dreams. Over time I learned his name ‘Sinclair’, and we would have short (3 to 4 sentence) conversations about my life or about my dreams. The year I turned sixteen, Sinclair ceased to come. One night he was there as normal, and the next, he was not.
I was 38 the year I went to Scotland and ‘found’ Sinclair. I had always assumed he had told me his given name, after all, that is how he always referred to me. From the beginning of our acquaintance, I was Eddie, or Eddie Louise, none of the bogus ‘My Lady’ titles that other girls aspired to. Even in my dreams I was not a Princess or a Lady; I was an adventurer. While in Scotland, I toured Roslyn Chapel and discovered the Sinclairs, a Scottish family that bears the coat-of-arms I had dreamed of. I have no explanation for how a cowboy’s daughter in rural Wyoming managed to dream specifically of a 600 year old knight down to his coat of arms. I blame it on the fog.
PS: My personal life is in a fog just now – between books, between jobs, between phases of life and possibly even between homes. I could sure use Sinclair to help guide me out of the fog!