Phoenix sculpture burn at Rebirth at The Shire.
by Glen Swartwout
The Shire is located adjacent to the Burning Land of Mount Doom, otherwise known as Kilauea, the most active volcano on Earth… The tropical sun, also shines its celestial fire down upon this land, providing a year round growing season, balancing out the sometimes intense rainfall that keeps it a lush, green, flowering tropical paradise, and providing frequent rainbows, many double rainbows, and even magical moonbows that shine like mithreal silver.
Fire is a useful tool, particularly in a place with an abundance of moisture. Ohia is an ideal firewood, being the sixth densest wood on the planet. Of course we only harvest dead ohia trees! Fire can be used for cooking (yum!), heating water (ahhhh!), drying bananas and other fruits, as well as smoking fish and meat for food preservation. And with forethought, all of these functions can be served by a single fire, with a beehive lava rock oven (with an inner layer of cinderized lava rock used as fire brick, and an outer layer of black rock). A single small fire can efficiently heat a massive heat sink of rock and mortar for all-day cooking heat, and embedded air and water pipes can carry this heat, or smoke and heat, as needed for adjunct drying, smoking and water heating processes. Read the rest of this entry
Hawaiian hale (house), Hilo, Hawaii (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
by Glen Swartwout
Wood elves enjoy the remote reaches of deep rainforest, while wood hobbits rarely stray very far from comfort of the The Shire, but prefer to inhabit the cool forest edges. These Middle Earth dwellers are caretakers of forest glen and glade… they take care in how they interact with the trees and the other creatures of the wood… And even help restore the forest magic, nearly visible amongst the ferns, moss and faerie rings, which can entice the return of the Mu.
Sometimes humans or even an occasional orc make their way into the forest, and one can tell where they have passed. They use machetes to slash their way through the underbrush, wasting no time and taking no care to leave the forest in better shape than they found it. Saplings slashed carelessly to a point create a weaponized forest terrain, where one slip on a wet guava root could be deadly. That is why the hobbits and elves, when they cut a tree, cut it flush with the ground with a limb saw. One can even step on the remaining stump by chance and not realize it. No pain. No danger. No harm. Read the rest of this entry
East Rift Zone of Kilauea Volcano. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
by Glen Swartwout
Crevices in the earth form near the Rift Zone of the most active volcano on Earth, as the land to our South (the unstable side of this fault line) sinks under the massive weight of the newest land on Earth, being deposited daily whenever the lava is flowing into the ocean… And this is a fact you will easily detect when heading to the beach, as you will see the cloud-like plume rising a thousand feet in the air. At night if you get closer to the plume you may see it lit up by the red glow of lava exploding as it hits cool ocean water, as well as with internal lightning, electrical discharges traveling through plasma (ionized gas). It is reminiscent of the Shekinah Glory, the Earthly presence of the Creator, which appears as a pillar of smoke by day, and a pillar of fire by night.
When surface lava flows pool up temporarily forming a lava lake, we sometimes even see the red glow reflected in the clouds from our cozy vantage point at The Shire, some five miles away. Now doesn’t that make you feel safe? It’s actually one of the safest volcanoes on the planet, because it rarely builds up pressure to produce an explosive eruption. You can often walk right up to a lava flow, if you can stand the heat… I wonder why the banks and insurance companies refuse to do Orc business here… Read the rest of this entry