I have a little orange moleskine that I use to scribble down my dreams when I wake. I often write my notes in the dark when the need for a pee wakes me from a dream. Reading them in the morning is virtually impossible. My scrawl is uncharacteristically large and sloping. Last night there were two descriptions. One was of my showing the footballer Lionel Messi to his room (I thought it was Oliver Massinet – he soon put me right, what do I know of footballers?). Did we have a hotel? He’d certainly stayed with us before – he was familiar and chatty. I asked if the room was OK. I didn’t recognise it. It was a huge suite. He went to try the shower and ran it over the carpet. There was a girl there too. Heavily made-up with bright pink lipstick she flirted with him openly. I asked if he’d worked that day. He was sharp. I work everyday, very hard. Surely you didn’t play a match today, I said. No, but I trained very hard. I woke then with my painful head and went into him for comfort. Dosed up with Ibuprofen and Paracetamol I slept dreaming of trying to find our acquaintances’ hotel (they are in administration, bless them) and coming upon a host of homeless people sleeping on the steps of what was a large indoor market hall. One shouted at me when I wished him good morning saying something about having been in the army. I was intimidated and sorry that I had nothing to give him. I walked up the steps – it was like an airport departure hall but darker, more intimate. There were ethnic clothes stalls and coffee shops and then down some steps and I came to a reception with several women in smart uniforms. I was in London. Whereabouts? I asked one of them. She went in search of a map. I know it’s the South East I said, recognising some of the names on the map, like Kensal (is that South East?), though I prefer the North. Why did I say that? I thought on waking, or was it in my dream. For I don’t. Not particularly.

A fine misty rain fell during the whole of my walk. The harbour was a car park again. A pair of feet stuck out of a lit white van. I didn’t look in. They might have been asleep. Our neighbours have grown some sweet peas. How I long, like Rapunzel’s mother to steal out and clip some. The smell is divine. Next year. Next year.

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.