Archive for April, 2008

The Children of Hurin by: J.R.R. Tolkien

Thursday, April 24th, 2008

The Children of Hurin

author: J.R.R. Tolkien

This book is rather a quick read. Slow to start but the action picks up nicely and then carries you along. Images have been included to give you a visual perspective.

The story itself? If you have read The Lord of the Rings by Tolkien you would know that they take place in the third (?) age. Other of his books cover the same period while others give you an overview of the history of middle earth. The Children of Hurin goes back to the days of antiquity. The first age when the great evil first took a permanent body and, as always, was striving to crush middle earth in his hand.

It begins with a battle between good and evil. Turin, one of the human leaders, joins forces with some of the elves to throw back the hand from Angband. The battle is lost and Turin is taken captive. The story then turns to his home where his pregnant wife and infant son Hurin wait for Turin’s return. If you are expecting a happy tale don’t pick-up the book. The story is a dark one and tradgeties abound. A curse placed upon the family of Turin by Morgoth exacts a terrible price. Hunted and haunted heros and heroins. There are moments of victory mind you but the twists in the story may be found disturbing by some readers.

As I came down to the last couple of chapters the reading became too familiar. I knew the outcome before the chapter ended. Perhaps having read many of the other books this story was covered in part and my mind filled in the rest. Either that or my longterm memory is on the fritz and I have read the book before. I doubt that but just incase you are an avid reader of Tolkien’s work you should know that the ending may not be too surprising. If you haven’t read any of Tolkien’s works before there is a good primer at the beginning of the book to help the novice understand the overall storyline of middle earth.

Drivus Interuptus

Saturday, April 19th, 2008

For the past couple of weeks I have been going out for a drive around the harbour. Sometimes with Linda and have a good talk. Sometimes alone with God for a good talk. On several occassions there would be a stop or two in route. One night Linda and I watched some stalwart people with dip nets fishing for smelt off the canal piers. A walk along the pedestrian path watching the waves. One time it was to stop and share a plate of french fires. It was never quite the same and always good for the soul.

Tonight, after being cooped up in the house all day, I got in the car and went for a drive. Down Cannon, pass Dundurn Park, Plains road to Mapleview mall, right turn down to Joseph Brant hospital. Now comes the part I like the most. Keep driving along the beach strip road.

There is a point where you turn to the right to pass under the big bridges. Tonight the road was blocked by pylons with a cruiser parked behind them, headlihgts dimmed. No choice, turn right onto the highway access route and take the North shore cut-off. Left onto the road and then right onto the QEW Niagara access route. Oops, the bridge over the QEW south bound was closed… take the side access. You guessed it… more pylons and I pass the cruiser that was parked under the bridge. This time I see his tail-lights. Why send me all the way around?

So I go over the lift bridge and enter the parking lot on the east shore. Now I forgot my jacket and the breeze off the lake sent a chill through my body. Guess I won’t be visiting the dipnet fishermen this evening.

Back in the car I drive south to get onto beach road. Yep, the access is blocked by pylons. Why? I haven’t got the faintest idea. Inquisitive and a bit stubborn I take the west service road and drive down to Centennial. Left turn down to the beach. Pass Hutches but no fries tonight. Then a right turn onto the beach strip. Drove all the way to the end. You know what I saw. Yep, the pylons I passed going the other way. No reason for the pylons to block access. So I turn around and go home via Tim’s to pick-up a coffee for Linda.

Tonight my drive was interupted by pylons. Most of which seemed to have been placed for no purpose. It made for an interesting drive. Sigh… I wouldn’t want to do that again.

It Must Be Spring II

Friday, April 18th, 2008

Woke up and had my breakfast. Finished watching the 700 club. Ah well, time to go upstairs and check the email etc. Stepped into the office…

My senses are reeling. Something has changed and I grope for reality. Mental confusion as my mind tries to sort out the great changes that have taken place. Finally my eyes rest on the office window. Something strange is happening. I feel a slight breeze moving through the room. Earthy sents fill my nostrils. Birds chirping while I hear the hum of traffic in the back ground.

Aha! Now I understand. The window is OPEN. I stare at it for some moments. I try to grasp the importance of what I see. Another sign that it is not only warmer outside… It must be spring too.

It Must Be Spring

Tuesday, April 8th, 2008

Earlier this year I looked outside and saw that the sun was shinning. I turned on the TV and saw that the temperature was rather nice. I cracked open the door and sniffed the air outside. “Rather inviting”, I said to myself. No coat, no hat, I stepped through the door. Outside, boy did it look big. I walked down to the sidewalk. The sun shone with a brightness I haven’t experienced in months. Oh, too bright I thought. I dared not look down… I may see my shadow. I fought the urge to run back into the house. No, no, we don’t need another six weeks of winter. I walked a little further and said I can tolerate this quite well. I have no idea what Wiarton Willy did on groundhog day but this recluse stayed out.

That was a good sign then. Warmer weather on the way. Spring cleaning, specially outside, calls to me… clean me it whispers. Well, truth be told it was more like a nag. Now the true sign that spring has finally arrived isn’t the warm temperatures. It isn’t the sun shinning. The birds? The flowers? Etc? No, no, the true sign that spring was here happened last night. Linda and I got in the car and went for a drive. Was that it? Nope. It was when we got out to Hutches at the beach strip. We got out and walked. Ooohh, two rusty soldiers of life limbering up with their first walk together of the season. Didn’t go far but it was a start.

Yep, it must be spring.