I’m driving along a road, though I’m not sure where this is.I’m seemingly in the middle of nowhere, no identifying features in sight. Theroad is paved with dark asphalt, and either side is a flat landscape, mostlygreen grass. The sky is grey and I can’t see beyond the horizon.
The vehicle I am in comes to a cliff edge, though stillthere are no identifying features to help me figure out where I am. The roadmakes a sharp descent over the cliff and spirals down the side in a verticalmanner. This road is impossibly steep,and spirals down for a long distance. I’m glad that I am in a rental vehiclebecause I don’t believe my SUV could handle the very narrow walls or roadway,or the low clearance. I can’t believe a road was made like this.
The spiral ends like the way it began, suddenly, and nearlyvertically, which would be impossible to transverse for most vehicles. Thevertical road intersects a horizontal road which leads to a vista of the ocean,surrounding mountains, and beautiful landscapes, and I realize I am in Hawaii!Immediately everything is in super-bright color and vivid detail, and I standthere looking around in awe of the scene.
I follow some other tourists towards the obviousdestination, a boat that is designed to show the local area to visitors. I walkout and I am on an open deck, the air around me is warm and the breeze isstrong. The boat moves out in to the water, though it never gets very far fromshore. Off to my left is a giant tanker, and as I pan my head right I can seehundreds of boats moving swiftly in a traffic lane, or some organized line ofboat traffic. The boats vary in size, shape, and function, and even ahelicopter is sputtering along on the water’s surface, which seems normalenough.
Many of the boats are spewing quite a bit of smoke, and atone point I thought there was a fire aboard a boat or two, but it turned out tojust be an incredible amount of thick black smoke.
I pull out my digital camera and take a few pictures. Thehills to the left, the sky and water, the boats, it’s all very colorful and Iwant to show it off.
Behind me and around the deck are rows of seats, and Ialternately sit in one and stand to take occasional pictures. At one point Iget up and start to grab the camera of the man next to me, which is on thefloor, and clearly not a digital like mine. I immediately apologize, tellingthe man, “I’m very sorry! My camera is just like this, and even the flash, butI left them back in the vehicle. Normally I would be taking pictures like thiswith that camera.” He seemed to understand, and turned back to converse withthe man next to him.
The boat returns to shore and I walk off, wondering what I’mgoing to do now. I look out and up and the landscape is a total tourist trap. Alarge waterslide dominates the hill in front of me, and I walk towards theamusement park. I don’t recall seeing it before the boat ride but here it is. Iturn around and look to my right and I can see shops and a city hundreds offeet below the hilltop that all this fun is located on. I walk back in thedirection of the boat, or docking area, and I encounter a group of people whoseem especially interested in one man in the center of their group. I recognizehim immediately as James Bond, but he now has long hair which is pulled backinto a ponytail. He appears to be in excellent shape, and slightly taller thanin the movies. His physical age looks like someone in their late 40’s or early50’s who has been taking care of themselves.
“I recognize you! You’re James bond! I love your movies! I’dreally just like to…shake your hand.” At first he seems reluctant to shakehands, as though he has been doing it all day, and perhaps he was expecting meto ask for something more. When I don’t request anything else he finally shakesmy hand.
While we were outside we are now inside some room where hechanges his outfit slightly, to something more appropriate for outdoors.
“You want to see something? Come with me, I’ll show yousomething.”
He leads me out of the room and to a river, or water chute,where he has me climb behind him on to a jet-ski type of machine, though atfirst I think we’re still on land. We take off at a fast rate of speed and nowwe are on a wide, slow-moving river, headed upstream. The pace is incredibleand I struggle to keep hold and not lose grasp of my camera. The scenery isbeautiful!
We leave the city and the amusement area behind and proceedfurther in to the hills, all of which are lush with greenery. On some, whatappears to be fir trees cover the hillside, and among them hikers and outdoorenthusiasts can be seen enjoying the beautiful landscape. Even more bizarre isthat some hills have snow on them, some are top-covered and some have patchesof snow all the way down to the waterline. I attempt to take several picturesand some come out and some do not. My shutter is working slowly and does notcatch every image timely.
On my right and in some valley below us we pass a school,and perhaps a church or cemetery, though I never see any graves. It matters not;I’m too busy being in awe of how beautiful and lush Hawaii is. I’m takingpictures left and right, wanting to show everyone back home that Hawaii isnothing like what we see on television. As I understand it, Mr. Bond has brought me up a river and deep in tothe region to show me the real island treasure, something tourists never get tosee.
I understand why people live here, and why it’s one of thecalmest urbanized areas in the nation. I contemplate staying.
The ride takes some considerable time, and we pass numeroushills and valleys, all of which are some of the most vivid colors I have everseen. When we at last come to the end of the ride we are on a high hilloverlooking Honolulu. Beyond the city I can see the ocean and the mountainstypically seen in postcards and movies.
James Bond dismounts the vehicle and steps on to a woodendeck and continues on in to what appears to be a motel room or somethingsimilar. I get off the vehicle and look around for a second. We are no longeron water when the ride stops but as I approach the motel area I feel like I ambeside a canal, or on some wharf. The lighting is dim, and the area seems seedyand unsavory, like one might expect from a dark alley in Venice at night orsome fishing community where people shut their doors and windows to avoiddrunken types.
I walk up to James who is on the sidewalk outside the roomand I suddenly find myself face-to-face with a beautiful young brunette woman,and she stares right in to my eyes. There is an odd mix of attraction and fearin her eyes, and she runs on past me. She is dressed in a pink nightgown thatdoesn’t reach her knees but doesn’t look smutty either.
She disappears around the corner about fifty feet down fromus and James asks me if I want to follow. I nod and he says, “Yeah, you do, Ican tell.”
We run to the corner where we last saw her and make anabrupt turn to our right. The hall becomes dark, but it clearly leads up to adoor which I take for a bathroom. “Ha!” I think, we know where she is now, thiswill be easy!
I reach for the door and yank it open, but excitement turnsin to shock as I see the woman is held around the neck by a large, surly manwith bad teeth. He is holding a large knife and is clearly upset, and angry atour intrusion. He must be who she was running from and he must have corneredher here, or this is what I believe at the moment.
In a moment of bravado I grab for his wrist, attempting togain control of him and his weapon, but he is faster than I expected and heeasily sidesteps this move. He regains composure and lunges forward with theknife, and I have to duck swiftly to avoid a deep penetrating stab. He pullsback and I start to come up, and again he stabs forward with the knife, and itis pointed right in my face.
“Easy!” I manage to say. “I don’t want to be stabbed in theface! Calm down!” At this point I realize he has me at a disadvantage and Imust wait for another opportunity. Oddly enough James Bond is nowhere to beseen and I feel abandoned. This is going to be really tough if I have to takeon this guy by myself, and the girl will suffer along with me.
I am staring down the length of the knife, waiting while theangry man decides what to do. Behind the man is a view of a bathroom across thehall, and this opening is draped with a shower curtain. Behind the curtain andunseen by the angry man I can see James Bond coming up behind him, about tostrike him hard with a blunt object, and my spirits are momentarily lifted.
Mr. Bond makes his strike, but somehow the angry man becomesaware of the attack and strikes him in the neck with his knife. He pulls it outand James’ hand immediately goes to the wound. Bright red blood sprays out, andstarts pouring down his neck and shirt as he collapses at my feet. He appearsmortally wounded, and this is when everything seems really grave.
I look down at his figure and then kneel down to help him.Something about the whole situation seems really familiar, and though I shouldbe horrified at this scenario I am no longer afraid. In fact, I am amused, andthe whole dream borders on lucidity.
I’m holding him up slightly from the floor, staring at thebright red blood, and then I lean in and whisper, “You can stop now. I saw allthis on Bourdain.” The familiarity of the situation becomes apparent to me as Irealize this whole scene had once played out on Anthony Bourdain’s show, NoReservations, which airs on the Travel Channel.
He doesn’t seem to realize what I’m saying and again Irepeat, “I saw all this on Bourdain.”
He starts to get up, and he tells the angry man, “You canstop now.” The angry man releases the woman and loses all trace of hostility.The whole scene had been created for my benefit, an amusement made most real. Ihad felt threatened and was prepared to do whatever was necessary to defuse thesituation, up until I realized that Mr. Bond was using a corn-syrup packet toappear like fake blood on his neck.
It was very impressive, and I felt a little bad that I hadended the scene. James walks off and out of the room, slightly dejected.
I walk out of the room, also, and back towards the way wehad come from. I have to descend a stairway to get back down, though it had notbeen there before. Each stair is pastel-colored, pink, blue, and yellow, an oddcolor-scheme.
At the bottom of the stairs and to my right is an opendoorway. Inside the doorway is a large drier with its door open, and sittinginside the drier is a beautiful young woman in a medium-dark green outfit,curled up and watching TV. I pass on by but then think perhaps I have hadenough of James Bond and I would rather spend it with the girl in the drier. Iturn around and head back to her and I’m about to ask if I can join her companywhen I wake up.