Why I was unable to sleep early last night, and got up like an excited cat this morning is beyond me. Usually, I sleep like a sloth that had an extra helping of eucalyptus for dessert: just leap into bed at the end of the day, read for a bit, and pop off. That extra helping of eucalyptus probably contributes to the birds having to tweet very loudly to rouse the sleeper from sweet slumber (The birds have since taken to partnering with poetic alarms).
I can’t say I leapt out of bed, that would be too much, but I did get up smiling. The promise of holiday cheer is definitely a factor. I smiled sleepily to myself with the lovely realization that child-like enthusiasm only takes the promise of fun to be up and about.
Also, it has to be a good thing if the first thing I thought of was Gandalf and his good-morning sequence with old Bilbo Baggins. There has to be a word for that sort of magic.
“Good Morning!” said Bilbo, and he meant it. The sun was shining, and the grass was very green. But Gandalf looked at him from under long bushy eyebrows that stuck out further than the brim of his shady hat.
“What do you mean?” he said. “Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?”
“All of them at once,” said Bilbo. “And a very fine morning for a pipe of tobacco out of doors, into the bargain.
I stepped out for a little garden stroll Shire-style, thinking and noticing the fine things nature had to offer that beautiful morning. I nodded appreciatively at the brave show the snow peas were making again. Not for the first time did I admire these hardy low maintenance plants that give out so much joy. I have planted ferns, potatoes and lord knows what else, but they elude me. The fruit trees in my little strip of garden all require some expert care seeing that they bear no fruit. The occasional gardener who comes along to help has little to offer by way of advice, and I feel for the sorry trees in my care.
I read books that said we have the knowledge of natural things in our very being, and nobody has yet planted a sapling wrong and all that sort of thing. Yet the plants in my care don’t seem to know that. Maybe I should read out some of these books to them. Like Frog & Toad reading to their little seeds to make them grow fast.
I noticed the perfect structure of the budding chyrsanthemums, the beautiful symmetry of pinecones, and wondered why we humans have moved away from the beautiful aesthetics that nature has created for us. It is time we embraced Biomimicry in our design patterns.
This modern tendency to create monstrous piles of rubble and call them buildings is tedious. Modern plumbing and electric lighting aside, what was the problem with medieval castles? And a little variety of structure?
I was trying to get a good picture of these beautiful little things when I noticed a neighbor who had come walking their dog give me a quizzical look as if to say “Do I not have better things to do?”
I felt this was the perfect time for the final “Good Morning!” Bilbo-style.
“Good morning!” he said at last. “We don’t want any adventures here, thank you! You might try over The Hill or across The Water.” By this he meant that the conversation was at an end.
“What a lot of things you do use Good morning for!” said Gandalf. “Now you mean that you want to get rid of me, and that it won’t be good till I move off.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, or There and Back Again
- The Hobbit – By J R R Tolkien
- Everything in its place – By Oliver Sacks
- Frog & Toad – By Arnold Lobel
- Biomimicry – By Janine Benyus