Topic: "Date With David" (2)
Frodo has had the very good fortune to have personally observed DaVinci's "Mona Lisa," perhaps the most famous painting on canvas in all of human history. Frodo has looked upon the burial mask of Tutankhamun, and marveled at what is surely the most spectacular creation in precious metals ever made by Man. In a few short days Frodo and Sam will hopefully stand in front of the single most important piece of sculpture ever. Frodo, a mere Hobbit, will gaze upon the 17 foot-tall naked man named "David," created by Michelangelo, in a venue as daunting as the journey itself.
The gallant Howard is no more, and Sam has handled the grief with characteristic aplomb, but even Sam acknowledges the pain of loss. Frodo was unable to convince Sam that a new hat would temper the memories. Frodo proposed that Mount Doom would still be there if the Hobbits merely changed their course in order to absorb a view other than the summit before them. "Besides," said Frodo, " we can cast absentee ballots for the first time, thereby assuring that the other side will have to catch up, if they can."
So Sam and Frodo will depart on Friday next, and not return until the November 15th that follows. That leaves just a few days to prepare, and only one or two more chronicles before departure. Venice and Florence, a Greek Isle or three, and the heralded view at Dubrovnik are on the agenda of the wayward inheritors of the winds of Odysseus. Frodo will spend much time looking for Scylla, the Minotaur, and the Isle of Lesbos. The characters therein were the first to imprint on the mind of the young Frodo, and he has long dreamed of the spray on his face and Neptune's trident on the horizon. Sam will make friends with people from many parts of Middle Earth, for that is Sam's way, leaving no designer of fashion and jewelry untouched by the opportunity to increase his wealth.
The Shire will be protected, and the true inhabitants cared for by kennel and house-sitter. The feeders will be filled, the baths and ponds all drawn, and Frodo feels relatively secure that even Sauron couldn't start another war in less than two weeks.
He couldn't, could he?