The Shire

I just came across this housing development in Ohio that is calling itself The Shire and is modelling itself after The Shire from Tolkien’s books. Unfortunately, I think it is a little more expensive to live in The Shire of Ohio than the Shire of Middle Earth, as the starting price is $550,000. Wouldn’t it be cool to write The Shire as your address, though?


There is something about this time of year that really inspires me. The feelings many people have on January 1, I have for the fall. Everything seems new to me, which I guess stems back to childhood when Fall meant the beginning of school. The first days of school were always tough because it meant an end to the freedom of summer. However, it was a new school year with new classes and with that a new chance that this year would be the year I would do something great and somehow become popular. Hey, I was just a kid!

Additionally, Autumn brings a change in the weather. Living in Pennsylvania, we have a frigid winter, a cold, rainy summer, and lately an unbearably scorching, humid summer. Fall cools things down without being so cold I have to sprint to my car for fear of turning into a showman. It is so nice to stroll to my car after work, and be able to just take in the scenery without melting from the sun.

But really, the highlight of fall is the foliage. Let’s face it. Living in Pennsylvania, or “Penn’s Woods”, trees outnumber sentient beings at least 100 to 1. The least they can do is change into bright, beautiful colors every year. When I was in college, I had an hour and a half drive home on weekends when I visited my parents. Many of the roads were back roads, i.e. they had no lines painted on them and were barely big enough to fit two cars at once. None of that mattered, though, because the colors on the trees made the trip worthwhile. Maybe Autumn reminds me of this time in my life as well?

As I look to start a short story, I have all these images and feelings running about in my head. My job is to somehow capture them in print. I just don’t know if I can do it.