I think elements in the dream were supposed to make me realize it was a dream, but it didn’t work.
There was a green (a shade of dream green) lizard, an iguana, but I kept calling it a salamander.
It kept growing to a large size and even “swam” through the air, but I didn’t realize it was a dream I kept picturing a garden to let it go in.
I remember being in auditorium-like seating and staring at some lady who looked like an actress.
She confronted me later and I explained she looked like an actress (I couldn’t remember the name). She invited me out – it was awkward because it felt like she was asking me out on a romantic date, but I’m not gay, so it was just a little weird.
I ended up not following her and going in a different direction in a city.
I remember running into Charlie* in this dream. He took a lighter and burnt part of the back driver’s side door. I got mad, telling him it was a leased car.
I tried moving his hand and lighter away from my car and it went close to his face, lighting the edges of his eyebrows on fire.
It was like a way to remember the dream – for both of us. (I’m so putting this idea in a dream tech story.)
Later, Hillary* from high school got into a post-apocalyptic version of a COTA bus. I got in a passenger seat, thinking Charlie would stand in the stairwell. He didn’t get in.
Later, I was in the stairwell. We went by what Hillary called “gates.” I called them exits. They were half-built interstate highways going over a large river. There were exposed elevators.
We somehow drove through one “gate” and I was worried the bus was too long to get through an elevator cleanly. I was right, it got stuck. We still got down, though.
* Names have been changed.