Dozing off in the early winter sunshine, is a hobby for cats and humans alike. In my daughters’ opinion, those like their mother, enjoy this ritual with a book half opened in their hands. When I opened my eyes, I found them looking at me with amusement.
” Enjoyed the nap, ma? You are like Bilbo Baggins.”
I rather like Bilbo Baggins. I like his spic and span home with books and parchments. I like the way he fries his fish. His collection of antiques, his cosy chairs, his well designed Hobbit home. The best is the bench in front of the house. From the vantage point, you watch life flow, seamlessly, in green, red,white as the seasons change in the Shire. I like his reluctant but heartfelt participation in life’s adventures. Yes, I like that he got the Arkenstone and refused to give it to the gold lust dazed Thorin. I like that he is not afraid to ask hard questions and hear the hurting truthful answers. I love the fact that he hates war. I admire his love for Frodo and his giving away of his treasures. I like his honest vulnerability before the ring of power, and the sense in him to distrust its corrupting nature.I like the way the Hobbit epitomises certain truths.
What happens to Thorin , when the gold lust ( ” ..never under estimate the power of gold over which a serpent has long brooded..”) crazes him over, happens to many in daily life. They just cannot see the reality any more. Like the ring of power corrupts Smeagol into a pathetic Gollum, corrupts Saruman the wise into a Orc creating crony of the very evil he resisted, the tale plays out in real world every day in different forms. I see so many of Tolkein’s characters, albeit in human form, playing out their roles to devastating effect on a daily scale.
I think of the refugees flowing across the devastated parts of the world. Losing their beloved Shires, their dances and songs. Orc marches of war and human evil have destroyed their homesteads. The lands where they reach, with babies and young, are wary and afraid. Trouble brews in different parts of the world. The scenarios of pacts and promises and alliances seem to be from tales of Tolkein’s own. What was the lesson? If Gondor is over run by the forces of hatred, then soon, it will reach the Shire too. For if the body of life is infested, the rot crawls to every healthy part. Today, it is them who suffer. Tomorrow, it could be us. Day after…
I look up and smile .” Thank you for the compliment”, I say.