Had a dream. Little hard to describe since the dream had not a plot, but a place: The River.
From the air, I could see the River, curving fat and slow across a great plain, the sun glinting off the turbid water. At every curve you found a town, centers of the surrounding farmland. In between the towns swam the boats choogly.
I saw the steamboats, not like sidepaddlers of our own history. I saw a line of them: barges with boilers on them, looked like furnaces, with great bronze screws, choog-choog-choog, half-in and half-out of the water. Which makes for massive cavitation and poor performance (hence the choogly sound), but that was not a problem. They were slow, but they connected the towns. No one was in a hurry.
Between the towns the steam-boats carried goods and passengers, choog-choog-choog, and the boat-men got a little change in their pockets, singing in the sun.
On the river ran the boats, town to town, and I saw the River, the people of the River. They were happy. It was a lovely dream, because they all were happy.