Mood: hug me
Topic: "The Turtle" (3)
Frodo stood with his impatient associates at the rear gate, all staring at the obstacle in their path. A box turtle was uniquely positioned so that his shell prevented the gate from opening, and Frodo could not readily figure out how to end this stalemate. Fiona and Mick, the Wonder Dog, looked to Frodo to solve this problem quickly, for there was tennis ball to be played, and soon the morning shadows would fall prey to the late summer sun.
Frodo's fingers managed to push the turtle back enough for Fiona and Mick, the Wonder Dog, to fly through to the grassland beyond while Frodo tarried to examine this uninvited, but not unwelcome, visitor to the Shire. After making sure that the sealed Humvee was without damage, Frodo placed him in a secure spot underneath a hedge, and out of the line of fire from the canines who would return and perhaps decide that a new chew toy had been made available.
Later that day, Frodo noted that the turtle was still in the same location. Head held erect, he seemed to be studying the flora in his vicinity. The next day he remained in virtually the same spot, although facing in a leeward direction. The following day there was movement of less than a meter, and the direction placed his head into the wind, signaling perhaps that the inevitable vagabond was about to disappear. Sure enough, the visitor was nowhere to be found the next day, although Frodo examined roundabout for any sign.
Frodo was in the eleventh grade when he read "The Grapes of Wrath," and true it is that few words have had the impact on the Hobbit to rival the collection wrought by John Steinbeck. Frodo can still see, to this day, the blue mimeograph that asked him the question about what the turtle represented as it crossed the road amidst the traffic that threatened his progress. Frodo thinks of that turtle often, and wonders if such visitors to the Shire today come to remind him that no one promised him a rose garden. If however, on his travels, he comes upon one, he may have the luxury to visit.
The task atop Mount Doom, dangerous unto itself, is fraught with peril; so noted by Tom Joad and the Hobbit.