Posted in Humour, Personal, Stories, Writing

You Shall Not Pass!

Once upon a time, in a Queendom far away, there was a maiden with golden hair who led a happy life. Happy, except for one thing: she had no wheels. And how she needed wheels, for she missed her relatives, who lived in a neighboring province. One day she gathered her courage, contacted the Agency Of Magic Traveling and asked them for advice. A day later, an old wizard appeared at her door. He introduced himself as Gandalf and invited her into a device called a horse-mobile. Mobile. Moving. She liked that. A lot. And she loved horses too.

After a couple of lessons in the horse-mobile, the wizard thought the maiden was ready to pass the driving test and brought along a very strict Wizard from out of state, the Balroginator. After all, a test needs to be honest and unbiased! The Balroginator threw all kinds of obstacles on her path. The rack suddenly moved backward, heavy fog, fast horses, slow goats. He tested her in every way possible, but she didn’t blink an eye and stayed calm, guiding the horse-mobile with a steady hand. At last she was allowed to Pass. With flying colors. Soon she traveled the land, roaming further and further, until she finally settled down.

Two years went by, and the maiden – no longer a maiden – found herself the mother of a sturdy and handsome son. They had a happy life together, the boy as adventurous as his mother. When he became an adult, he expressed his wish for his own mobile.

Son, are you sure? You are only eighteen years old! Won’t you ride your pony in stead?

But the young man was determined.

No mother, I want a mobile, and not just a mere horse-mobile. Those are too old fashioned. Nay, I need an auto-mobile!

The auto-mobile was the latest invention of the Agency of Magic Traveling. The device, still highly experimental, had been invented by the Balroginator himself. The maiden tried to change her son’s mind, but he wouldn’t budge. At long last, the woman turned to her old friend Gandalf for advice, as she had done in her youth. To her surprise, the Wizard told her not to worry, to let go. That he would love to teach her cub the art of the auto-mobile.

The next day, Gandalf pulled up in the brand new Balrogacar, unique in its kind.

The maiden blinked upon seeing the frightening and alien device. She turned to her son and implored him to change his mind. But he had no eyes for her, nor for their horse. His gaze wandered lovingly over the sharp contours of the auto-mobile. He would master the art of driving this magic car, if it were the last thing he did. Get in, son, Gandalf said, let’s take the Balrogacar for a spin! And so he did.

Meanwhile, the Balroginator had second thoughts about sharing his invention with his Wizard pal Gandalf. During the months it took for the boy to learn how to drive, the Balroginator tried to make him lose his confidence by raising the difficulty level of the driving tests. You shall not pass, he vowed silently, I will be the only one to drive the Balrogacar!

The young man failed the first test. The Balroginator emphasized each little mistake the boy made, belittling his driving skills. But he did not give up. Gandalf patiently made sure his skills got better. Again the young man took the Balroginator’s exam, and again he failed. But he would not give up. Years passed and Gandalf brought along a second Wizard-Instructor, who impersonated as the Balroginator, just so the boy could get used to his threatening presence.

Then the day for the third test came. As he had done to the son’s mother, the Balroginator threw all kinds of obstacles on his path. The chair suddenly moved backward, heavy fog, slippery roads, fast horses, slow goats, road blocks and gorgeous young ladies along the road. He tested him in every way possible, but the young man didn’t blink an eye and stayed calm, guiding the Balrogacar with a steady hand. There was nothing the Balroginator could do, other than to let the youngster finally Pass. With flying colors. Soon he would travel the Queendom, roaming further and further, in his own Balrogacar. Which he first had to obtain of course 😉

Today, my son did what the Balrog could not do. He Passed!! Happy congrats, dear, I’m very proud of you 😀

Posted in Books, Movies, Music

Peregrin ‘Pippin’ Took – Through Shadow

A hint of a feeling, a touch of the dark. It is just a word, a thought, yet very stark.

SHADOW

for me is woven throughout my favorite book(s) of all times The Lord of the Rings.

The shadow of Sauron, stretching his evil tendrils all over Middle Earth.

The feared Balrog of Morgoth, wreathed in shadow and flame.

Artwork: LOTR

The dark and shadowed paths of the Mines of Moria.

Artwork: Wiki

But my thoughts linger on Pippin’s song, sang by Billy Boyd.

Home is behind, the world ahead… And there are many paths to tread. Through shadow, to the edge of night, until the stars are all alight… Mist and shadow, cloud and shade, all shall fade… all… shall… fade…

A captivating melody, indelible images, a sad light voice.

What is the story behind this Peregrin ‘Pippin’ fool-of-a-Took, this Billy Boyd.

Billy Boyd
Date of Birth: 28 August 1968, Glasgow, Scotland, UK
Birth Name: William Boyd
Nickname: Bill
Height: 5′ 6½” (1.69 m)

Mini Biography

Billy Boyd is born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1968. This talented young boy, inspired by Star Wars to try acting, got his first taste of it in his school’s production of Oliver Twist when he was 10. Boyd’s parents were extremely supportive, driving over two hours to get him to the performances, but sadly they passed away when he was 12. He was thereafter raised by his grandmother.

He realized that he enjoyed acting very much and told his school counselor that was what he wanted to be, but the counselor discouraged this choice and told him to “keep it secret”.

When he was 17 he left school and went to work in a book-binding workshop. He worked there 4 years as an apprentice and 2 years as a workman. Ironically, during the years he worked at the book-binders, the Lord of the Rings trilogy was printed and bound there, many copies bound by his hands. After the 6 years as a book-binder, he was thoroughly sick of it.

Billy planned on going to America for a year, but before he went he called the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and asked about applying for when he got back. But it so happened that they still had space for this year and they asked him if he wanted to apply and he did.

He’s a talented singer; a strong tenor / light baritone voice, F# to A above middle C over 2 octaves. He also plays the guitar, the bass, and the drums.

He was at the drama school in a 3-year course for his bachelor of arts degree, meanwhile studying everything from Shakespeare to puppet-making. During this time Billy had a few small roles in TV series such as “Down Amongst The Boys” and “Taggart”. After graduating he performed in many plays like ‘The Slab Boys’, ‘The Diary of Adrian Mole’ etc. at The St. Andrews theatre which were his first paying roles.

He then received a call from his agent about the Lord of the Rings movies and if he would like to audition for them. He went along not expecting much, but within a few months Peter Jackson came out to Scotland to meet him and to audition him personally. While rehearsing for a show he received a call from his agent who said that the part of Pippin had been offered to him – if he wanted it. The rest is history.

“I realised that it was just about Pippin and some other people!” After reading ‘Lord of the Rings’ for the first time.

On being asked if he could relate to his character, Pippin: “Strangely enough, the first time I tried to read the book I was on holiday in Florida. I dropped it in the pool my first day there. If that’s not a Pippin thing to do, I don’t know what is.”

Hobbits are a lot like Scots. It’s all about nature and enjoying their land, which is a very Scottish thing.

I think I have a gift… but I haven’t really opened that gift yet and given it to myself.

Source Mini Biography: IMDb

This Fool of a Took isn’t such a fool after all! He came through shadow into the light.

What is your association with shadow?