RICHMOND, Va. -- Tim Kaine on Thursday shared some secrets from the brutal U.S. Senate race he won: He has become friends with one of the most conservative Republicans in the Senate freshman class and in August he dreamed about being trapped in a Porta-Potty.

The Democratic U.S. Senator reflected on the 2012 campaign and the job ahead during a Q&A with reporters in Richmond.

He told a story about a vivid dream he had in August that "epitomizes the 2012 campaign."

"The dream was I was at a County Fair, I was politikin', I was shaking hands, and I had to duck into a Porta-Potty," Kaine said. "And when I'm in the outhouse, someone tips it over on me. And the contents of the outhouse are now completely covering my clothes. Worse they tipped it over onto the door so I couldn't get out."

But just as he did in the campaign, Kaine came out a winner.

"I had one thought and then I woke up," he continued. "I got clean clothes in the car."

Kaine will take office in January as one of 12 new senators and he has already begun the preparations. While his committee assignments haven't been completed (he's hoping for Armed Services, Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, and Small Businesses and Entrepreneurship, in that order) he has already begun the orientation process.

He does have an office, though, and it's right next to Republican Ted Cruz, an incoming Senator from Texas and a Tea Party darling. The two have already found mutual interests.

"I've just kind of started to get to know him and we share [that] we're passionate readers of histories and biographies and political books and we've started to do political trivia," Kaine said. "So during orientation we started a very good dialogue with Ted."

Kaine said there were some "discouraging sessions" in his first days in Washington as well.

"When you're sitting around and the 12 newcomers are in dialogue," Kaine said, "and it's really good and a couple of senior folks walk in and you notice the temperature drops like 15 degrees in the room, that makes an impression on you."