Yes, it’s a thing. Hobbit Day – because September 22 is the birthday of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins! Now as you my regular reader will know, given that my hobbit buddy and I feel an affinity with certain characteristics of this noble duo, we couldn’t really let the day pass by unmarked. The problem was how to celebrate though. I mean, there was a hobbit day virtual run we could do, but you have to pay for it in American dollars, and we are way too tight to indulge ourselves in that degree of decadence. Plus, I think sometimes you have to find a way to create your own celebratory rituals. This was one such occasion.
Coincidentally, 22nd September is also World Rhino Day. Rhinos are rarer than hobbits these days, sad but true. Makes me mad, and feel a bit helpless too to be honest. It is a lot easier to mark Hobbit Day with cavorting and frolicking than it is to help save a rhino, but I hope if you can you will do something in honour of both, and honestly, if you can only choose one, choose rhinos. The hobbits will probably endure longer than the last few individual rhinos we still have with us. I took part in a rhino conservation project a few years back. The heavily monitored few we were trying to protect, are pretty much all now gone. Through direct poaching, or the indirect consequences of trying to protect them from it (two were killed by poachers, the third died from a reaction to being sedated so it could have a tracking collar fitted to protect it from poaching.) Nothing funny about this. Just bloody depressing. No wonder I’ve ended up posting more about hobbits than saving the rhino. Sometimes it’s understandable to want to ignore big issues and hope they will go away, but given that this day has been chosen to think of both rhino and hobbits, spare a thought for each will you, and even better, keep informed throughout the year..
So, lightening the mood, back to hobbit day. I did look at wikihow for some ideas about how to celebrate this anniversary. I’ve consulted wikihow before and it’s actually helped me out before with carrying out other previously unfamiliar tasks like working out how to remove my bathroom light fitting (the screws were really hidden and obscured by the design, so I’m not as entirely incompetent as that example suggests). Wikihow is also handy for other topics like, oh I don’t know, probably carrying out minor DIY open heart surgery, that sort of thing. It does not have a post on how to save the rhino unfortunately (not that easy alas) but there is one on how to draw a cartoon rhino, so that’s a big help with conservation obviously. Fortunately, it did indeed have a post on ‘how to celebrate hobbit day‘. Not all the ideas were especially practical, but one of the listed points did jump out:
8) If you do not think your friends would be very interested in a Hobbit Day celebration, celebrate the day in your own way. Walk around barefoot for the day, eat about six meals (hobbits are always hungry), or make a Hobbit Day t-shirt to spread awareness. Consider making flyers to share with friends and acquaintances to help them understand the importance of this day
The thing, is we, hobbit buddy and I, were absolutely committed to marking the day with a celebratory hobbit run. Indeed, we even went out on a route recce to plan the perfect hobbit themed hop. We explored our local woods with new eyes, seeing it in all it’s glory as a magical wonderland, albeit one we don’t quite yet have the photographic skills to capture adequately. One consequence of this was that the atmospheric shot of mysterious little fungi growing in the dark base of a hollowed tree-trunk ended up looking rather more like a particularly unpleasant still from a recent endoscopy. However, we have to work with the tools and skills we have. We were still playing homage in our own way, and researching ideas for our own forthcoming (bound-to-be awesome) celebrations! I remain faithful to my original promise to myself that I’d try to be truthful in my blog posts, and as we’ve already established the camera never lies, I’m sure you’ll enjoy these lovely shots as much as we did. Maybe it can be a calendar off-shoot to our DVD plans for Winterval?
Unfortunately for us, this was to be the final epic fail of the morning. When we were back ‘from whence we came’ on the road again, we saw a massive F*&% Off 4X4 bearing down on us. It was intimidating enough on sight, windows blacked out, with its enormous dimensions fully blocking out the light. Honestly, it was like we were witnessing an unexpected eclipse of the sun. We thought it was the end of days! Not just our paranoia, there have been signs have there not, what with GBBO going to channel 4 and the seemingly irresistible rise of Donald Trump – surely one at least of those must signal the beginning of the end? Then there’s Syria, everything really, the world is definitely in meltdown… no wonder the dolphins all left.
Worse still, the invisible driver pulled alongside us, and lowered her windows with chilling calm before cackling out the window at us. ‘Why aren’t you running slackers!’ (I paraphrase). It was a fellow smiley. This was very bad, because it’s the second Smiley that has seen us ‘walking’ when we were allegedly out on a ‘run’ within a week. We have been caught out, not just once, but twice. Maybe I wasn’t imagining all those eyes on us when we headed out, their spies were everywhere right from the off! She had presumably been tasked to track us and had turned up as The Enforcer! Terrifying but true. This will end badly, what if they start to scrutinise our Strava run times, they don’t bear close inspection? We will be hounded out of the club for lack of any actual running in our ‘running’ records (ironically resulting in the fastest bit of running we’ve done in weeks or months).
Initially, our best form of defence seemed to be explanations and we went for self-justification – showing off Hobbit’s arm which really was swollen (honestly, it was really bad, she ended up spending a night in hospital because of it and I’m not even exaggerating for comic effect!), and gesturing to my back-pack to indicate we were only ever out for a picnic not a run anyway. Then it dawned on me. Hang on, why were we justifying ourselves to her? She, who was evidently merely posing in her active wear and not even walking, let alone running. Ha! Rumbled! We moved into attack mode! ‘Pots and kettles methinks!’ we protested. She did protest also, muttering something about yoga (which is basically sitting down isn’t it) but essentially she was soooooooooooo busted. CORRECTION: I’ve just been advised it wasn’t yoga, it was pilates – well, that’s just lying on the floor breathing surely, so something of an own goal I’d have thought, still, that’s me, always willing to issue amendments and corrections in my blog when requested. Clearly just a delightful bonus if it strengthens my point! Judge for yourself – look here she is, flaunting her Sheffield Half-Marathon Tee whilst basically reclining on heated leather seats in a mobile industrial sized RUV. Ha! no wonder she sped off promptish after that! Wheels spinning as she departed.
So dear reader, that was that. Hobbit Day celebrations done and dusted until same time next year. We departed our separate ways, celebratory activities concluded.
Not an entirely succesful outing to be fair, but sometimes you have to just push on through and not be discouraged. Not every day can be a good work out day, sometimes it feels like not any day. As for our hobbit day celebrations, we are new to all this, it was bound to be a learning curve and anyway, we all know worse things happen at sea. There’s always next time. At least we tried. Hope over experience, impossible odds notwithstanding, you have to give these things a go or how will you know?
Next stop back to parkrun. That will give me back my mojo, got to love parkrun. Best start to the weekend EVER. FACT!
**They came, the medals came! Yay.