approaches, and seeing as how I don't know when Mr. Lin will decide to
pack up the computer prior to our move, I thought I'd better share this
little conversation/parody thing I had recently with Boromir, before it
was too late. I realized recently that I haven't done one of these
since April, so I guess it's about time.
This conversation is based upon the passage from FOTR where the Fellowship contemplates climbing Mount Caradhras...
While Mr. Lin was finishing his second breakfast, Linaewen and
Boromir went aside together and stood looking at the steep staircase
down which they would be carrying all the luggage and packed boxes.
"I fear that the amount of packing that remains to be done is
mind-boggling," said Linaewen. "I have doubts concerning the number of
empty boxes available to get the job done in the short amount of time
that remains before we must leave. We must go with all the speed that
we can. Even so it will take us dozens of marches before we reach the
top of the pass and return to the bottom carrying burdensome boxes.
Darkness will come early this evening, since we went off daylight
savings time. We must begin as soon as you two men with the muscles can
"I will add a word of advice, if I may," said Boromir. "I was born
in a city with lots of stairs and steep places and know something of
journeys up and down in the high places. We shall meet shortness of
breath and aching knees, if no worse, before we come down for the final
time. It will not help us to go up empty-handed and have to come down
again to fetch boxes we forgot, and so waste our energy. When we leave
the ground floor, where there are still a few empty boxes and plastic
shopping bags, each of us should carry an empty receptacle, as large as
he (or she) can bear."
"And Linaewen could take a bit more, couldn't you, dear?" said Mr. Linaewen. Linaewen looked at him mournfully.
"Very well," sighed Linaewen. "But we must not use all the boxes,
in case I need some for last minute frantic packing of things I didn't
have time to sort."
The three of them set about their packing and hauling up and down
with good speed at first; but soon their way became steep and
difficult. The twisting and climbing staircase had in many places
almost disappeared under stray socks that had fallen from overstuffed
suitcases and papers still waiting to be sorted, and was blocked with
many empty boxes. The day waned and the night grew deadly dark under
the shadow of stacked packing crates. The sound of bitter complaining
swirled among the suitcases. By midnight they had climbed up and down
so many times they hardly knew which floor they were on, and they were
The narrow path now wound under a sheer wall of stacked boxes and
cartons to the left, above which the grim flanks of clothing still
waiting to be packed towered up invisible in the gloom; on the right
was a gulf of darkness where the steep stairs down which they must
travel yet again fell suddenly into a deep ravine.
Laboriously they climbed the landing yet again and halted for a moment at the top.
"I don't like this at all," panted Linaewen, feeling extremely
puffed and out of breath. "Packing's all right on a fine morning for a
short weekend trip, but I like to be done with it after an hour or so.
I wish this lot would magically move straight into the moving van and
be done with it! But wait -- what's this box doing here? It's supposed
to be downstairs!"
Boromir halted. Boxes were thick about his feet and a heavy
suitcase was on his shoulder; more stray socks were already ankle-deep
about his boots.
"This is what I feared," he said. "What do you say now, Mr. Lin?"
"That I feared it too," Mr. Lin answered, "I knew the risk of
getting turned around, though it seldom happens when I am in charge of
the moving. But we are weary and easily confused in these days. We have
mistakenly moved all the empty boxes downstairs and the full ones
upstairs, instead of the other way around. We shall have to begin
"I wonder if this is a contrivance of the Enemy," said Boromir,
ignoring Linaewen's wail of dismay. "They say in my land that he can
govern the minds of those who are moving so that they become confused
and incapable of making decisions, thus becoming angry and losing all
hope of being able to finish the packing on time."
"Indeed!" replied Mr. Lin. "Well, let's not waste time talking about it. Everyone grab a load and take it down as you go."
"But how am I to get down again, now that I am too weary to
continue?" wailed Linaewen, very much upset that the work would have to
"Have hope!" said Boromir. "I am weary, but I still have some
strength left, and Mr. Lin, too -- though I see that he is already
halfway down the stairs in his eagerness to keep working. He has much
energy, does he not?"
"Yes! Too much for me to keep up with him sometimes!"
"Then we must make shift to tread the path behind him. Come, my dear Linaewen!" He lifted up the weary Lin.
"Cling to my back! I shall need my arms," he said, and strode
forward. Linaewen marvelled at his strength, seeing the passage through
the boxes that he was forcing with no other tool than his great limbs
and a few well-placed kicks with his foot. Even now, burdened as he was
(for Lin was no longer as light as she once had been), he was picking
up already packed bags and suitcases to take along, and thrusting empty
cartons aside as he went.
At last they were gathered again on the ground floor, the night now
far advanced. From the bottom of the stairs they looked back upwards to
the top of the staircase. Far away in the tumble of luggage that lay at
every turning of the stairs was the landing from which they had started
their day's work.
"Well, I say we call it a day, then," suggested Linaewen, in the
hopes that she could avoid further strenuous lifting and tramping up
and down. "What about a coffee break?"
"Ah, coffee!" answered Mr. Lin, brightening. "With cookies!"
"Yes, coffee and cookies," nodded Boromir, looking suddenly more
cheerful. "And a bit of cheese -- sharp cheddar, if you have it."
"Cheese is a good idea," replied Linaewen as she climbed over
stacked boxes to get to the refrigerator. "It is a very powerful snack,
providing great energy to those who eat it. Speaking of energy, why
don't you two go ahead and just fetch down a couple of the heavier
boxes while I prepare a little something to keep your strength up...?"