What woke me three minutes before my alarm was the taste of mango in my mouth and the smell of star apple in the air. The senses were so overwhelmed that I stretched in bliss, hit the bed-head, and woke up smiling. Actually smiling. Three minutes before my alarm. Small miracle.
I was with a group of friends on a visit to Jamaica and we were being driven cross-country. I had six weeks off from work and had left the work blackberry at home so the little red dot wouldn’t drive me insane. We had driven from Kingston through St. Catherine, ever climbing, through Manchester’s mountains, and down the corkscrew of Spur Tree Hill into St. Elizabeth. In the mountains of St. Bess we stopped at a road-side fruit stand. None of this actually happened in the dream, but isn’t it strange how dreams come with their own memories and knowledge like a zip file?
In the dream my friends were negotiating with the language of Yorkshire and of Kent over bananas and sliced pineapples with an wide-eyed-with-awe country-man and tasting sugar-dense naseberries for the first time when a car pulled up. I was called away by name and turned to find an old friend from my high-school days. He was holding the biggest mango I had ever seen and looking very handsome. (Probably because of the mango.) He pulled off the road to speak to me and I remember lamenting to him that it wasn’t star apple season. He laughed and pointed up to the tree above my head and, as if commanded by his finger, ripening star apples appeared and filled the air with a heady syrup that hit the tongue through the nose.
My magical friend gave the vendor his mango, asked him to slice it in half. The mango had no seed! He then reached up to pick the nearest star apple. When my teeth sank into the mango I woke up.
Smiling. Three minutes before my alarm.