Recognize this map? If you do, then your imagination might be as expansive as my own. It’s a map of JRR Tolkien’s Middle Earth, that wonderful, terrible place where Tolkien set his novels The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings series: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and Return of the King. Tolkien’s work established what is today a most popular genre of literature – fantasy. These fantastic lands, including Middle Earth, provide a home for monsters, elves, dwarves, knights, wizards, magic, quests, and adventures. They provide a place for me to “live.” Yes, if I could own a small cottage on the western edge of Mirkwood, near the heart of Middle Earth, I would. Here’s why.
1. Adventure – In Middle Earth, each day the impossible is probable and the probable is only a step out of your door. Avoid orcs and goblins. Welcome elves (and even some dwarves). Heed the voice of wizards. Hide from the dragons and wave the giant eagles. Adventure!!!
2. Good and Evil – In Middle Earth, evil abounds, but it is easily detected. If it looks evil, it is. And, generally, if it looks good, it is. In our world, good and evil – it’s difficult to tell one from the other. In Middle Earth, it is plainly obvious (most of the time).
3. Yore – Middle Earth harkens unto days of old. Life is simple. Yes, it may be difficult at times, but even it that difficulty, I discover a simplicity that a tend to reach for.
4. Friendship – In Middle Earth, friends are true and honest. They care and they trek over and under mountains to prove it.
I could go on (and on); however, I believe I made my point. Anyway, I’m a busy man. I’ve a house to build on the western edge of Mirkwood. You are always welcome to visit.