The thing I have been musing about the most is how Frodo, Merry, Pippin and Sam are on this journey with the ring and how each time they have a struggle someone is there to help them.
Someone to give them food.
Someone to give them a warm bed and a bath.
Someone to share stories.
Someone to give information
Someone to teach the hobbits something new.
Someone to redirect them to the main road.
Someone to save them from impending death....time after time...after time
And most importantly someone to raise their spirits.
Remember when Old Man Willow eats all of Pippin and half of Merry? Sam and Frodo are doing all they can to rescue them when suddenly there is Tom Bombadil and ever so quickly Tom tells Old Man Willow what is what and is able to retrieve Pippin and Merry who now have a really great dinner party story :) Tom is a friendly, cheerful fellow who has taken an immense amount of time to understand all the lives in the forest thus enabling him to be master of them in a gentle, kind way. He leads the hobbits to his home and feeds them, gives them a place to sleep, lets them ask him questions and answers what he can. And then after they have left him and get into some serious trouble further down the road he comes again quickly, cheerfully, and willingly to help them yet again. No eye rolling. No scolding. Just a calm, matter of fact understanding that hey, these things happen....yes, sometimes twice and sometimes three times and it is okay :) I admire that a ton.
There are elves who happen to unknowingly? scare away a snooping black rider at the perfect moment. Elves who have the power of healing. Elves who are oh so wise and understand where everything fits and how everything must be done. Elves who have fast horses. Elves who are perfect in every way :)
There is Strider AKA Aragorn who appears just when the hobbits desperately need a guide and a protector. By the time Strider arrives in their journey their experiences are finally starting to change their views of the world around them and they, at first, are all very suspicious of Strider but the suspicion quickly melts away.
I can not help but know that there are definitely times when Elrond, Aragorn, Gandalf and others are more than frustrated with those Hobbits. They do love to eat. They do love to take rests. They do love to have a good time and talk a little to much about their personal lives while they are at the Prancing Pony. Even I myself feel the need to say something when Frodo keeps slipping on that ring at the wrong times. But then I remind myself I am not carrying the ring and can not begin to understand how strong that power must be :)
These books are so full of people trying to decide when to start on journeys and which path to take and the caring, willing to sacrifice for a cause friends that they take with them and make along the way...yeah...do you feel an analogy coming on? RUN :)
No, I do not have a ring that needs to be thrown back into the fire where it was made from but I am obviously on a journey....yes, you are too :) I definitely feel a kinship with the hobbits. I would rather be having a good meal, working in my garden, staying someplace safe, or writing or reading a book. But since I have to be on a journey I am ever so grateful for the Gandalf's, dwarves, elves, Aragorn's, and Hobbit buddies that have been on my road so far. I truly started my journey looking at the world with Hobbit eyes. By that I think I mean naive eyes. Not understanding what people around me are actually capable of. You tend to assume everyone thinks and sees the way you do :) When all is said and done I am grateful for true friends who have been there to give me food, to direct me back to the road, to teach me something new. Friends that like Gandalf stand between me and danger holding their staff and sternly declaring "You shall not pass." I do wish that all my learning was being learned while I was wearing a cloak and tromping across breathtaking middle earth with my peeps.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.”