05/07/11 June 6
Via dormiens was actually a street that ran from the northern part of the city where I was staying, in urbs speculorum, down through regio ignis dei and then east to regio luti. The area in the center of the city surrounding the temple of Morpheus eventually took on the name of that same street. So I did the natural thing and simply followed the street down, until I reached the temple.
And, well, I'll be honest, I was pretty surprised by what I saw. Now, every other district of the city wasn't that far off from my expectations of what a city would should look like. The city was beautiful, no doubt, but it had clear points of reference to other cities I've seen. The lively bazaars of regio serpentes to the skyscrapers of where I'd just come from. The comforting, quiet regio lunae that reminded me of the nicer parts of Boston. But here... The streets were barren. One or two people on the main road, never looking left or right, and that's it. Not a single person on any of the side streets. And the buildings were all flat, stone gray. No molding, no character. Most importantly, though, no windows. Just a single door, painted to match the stone, and the only splash of "color" anywhere – a small brass number above the handle, presumably the address.
At first, I merely thought it odd, but the further I got in, my unease grew. It was incredibly disconcerting. What was going on here? I decided I may as well continue looking for the temple... But would I even be able to find it? I hadn't taken down the address, assuming I'd be able to find it without much issue, given that I knew it was on the main road. For that matter, I had no idea where the hostel was in this district. I resolved to find that first, and then work my way to the temple after I'd settled in.
Asking around, it became clear that none of the few people I'd seen on the street lived in this section of town – they were all just passing through. Where were all the residents? There weren't even any shops, as far as I could see. Eventually I did meet someone, a courier who'd finished his routes for the day, who was able to point me in the direction of the hostel. He gave me the address, and warned me that it, like all the other buildings in the area, was unmarked otherwise.