These past few days, my corner of the world has been shrouded in a cold fog. It cuts off sound and hides the scenery. I run along the same canals, become almost unfamiliar territory. Thick clumps of of cloud move past me like silent ephemeral traffic.
Time has been paused for seasonal maintenance. The simulation has slowed to a crawl. Video game developers would once use fog to limit draw distance, so maybe this reality is itself temporarily limited to these thousand square meters which follow my pace.
Then again, maybe this is all centred around me. After all, when I pass other people, they seem to be rehearsing, trying too hard to play through careful scenes of normality. Maybe they reset when I leave the picture. Maybe they stop existing all together, like stranded memories in waiting.
Save for the reflection of trees, this lake has forgone the horizon. Water meets with sky without any apparent boundary, and the ground around it suddenly feels like it was propelled into the clouds rather than engulfed in fog.
Ducks float by diligently, like ships leaving trails in space, without any destination in particular.
Maybe if I run fast enough, I can catch up with this backdrop and leave the dream.