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Old 09-15-2002, 03:28 AM   #1
Tirned Tinnu
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Eye Real Life versus Middle Earth/Medievalist Living

This is my first topic! Hurrah. Finally I felt the need to post something that I haven't found in The Search!

I'm putting it here in Novices And Newcomers because I am New. I got the idea for it from the Movies Thread "Bumps and Bruises".

I read with empathy that the actors felt left out in the cold when they had to leave the set of LOTR. Viggo even stayed on for an extra few weeks. Sean Bean was sent home 3 months earlier than the rest of the cast, and commented that he didn't like that.

It has been my experience after doing medievalist camping for extended periods of time (more than a month) that the modern world loses its flavor. We spend so much time in front of our computers and tv sets that we forget that making fast friends and living closer to each other is important for our mental health. After learning social skills again in a "primitive" atmosphere, I really didn't miss my tv at all.

I felt the same as the actors in LOTR; I didn't want to go back to the "real world". I wanted to be with the people who I'd worked with, played with, gotten drunk with and had to bear cold wet muddy days with!

My medievalist clothing became much more comfortable to wear after being road stained and hand washed. Living in the outdoors gave one a look of sturdy ruggedness, and no one ever complained that you smelled of campfire.

I liked that tremendously. People would say to me, "You wouldn't like it if you lived that way all the time, people knowing your business, and never getting further than your town border." But I don't feel that way. Perhaps it's that I like slow living. Am i weird?

I think that Tolkien affords us a community in our hearts that we can all share. I just wish that I could live there more often. Sometimes I wonder if I was born into the wrong era.
Have you felt this too?

[ September 15, 2002: Message edited by: Tirned Tinnu ]
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Old 09-15-2002, 05:16 AM   #2
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I wouldn't mind to spend some time in M-E, but I wouldn't want to live my life and die there... Of course I wouldn't mind being there at all, but after all, all my friends, family and so on are here.

greetings,
lathspell
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Old 09-15-2002, 06:19 PM   #3
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I understand what you mean. I never actually went into the wilderness and lived first-hand what it was like to be in existence back then, but I experienced something vaguely familiar...

Surprisingly, I got that feeling of wanting to stay trapped in that world just from watching the movie repeatedly. From the first time I saw it, I had this strange but strong desire to somehow thrust myself into the world of the books and live in that time. In fact, I let this yearning get so server, that I became rather emotional and depressed, crying when I thought of how the world I really lived in could not compare to LOTR's.

I have recovered from that dangerous state that some would call ridiculous. I still often wish that I was one of the elves or a ranger living in those times, but I don't let it get so serious that it effects me every minute of the day. I let myself flow off to that world when watching the movie and reading the books, and then firmly remind myself that I am needed in present times. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

So to answer your question in short-terms, Yes, I have felt that way too. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 09-15-2002, 07:12 PM   #4
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Yes, I understand what you mean. I would, if I had a choice much prefur to live in a simpler, slower life. Although I like my e-mail and my TV, I usually prefer to be outside. Does anyone else feel that it is more exciting to get mail from the post office or mailbox then e-mail? Although, I suspect I am only one of few, I never really liked computers. I only use this computer for school (because most teachers require that things are typed), e-mail (because it is faster), and this site and from searching for other things. However, If I did not have a conputer, I wouldn't notice that these things were gone. Oh well. Good topic. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 09-15-2002, 08:03 PM   #5
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Hail and Well Met, Tirned Tinnu.

* bows a greeting *

Please allow me to commend you on an excellent first topic. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

In another realm, I am one of those infamous furriers of whom Bilbo speaks. I volunteer as a Native American fur trader for a living history program dealing with the life of the French Voyageur. What keeps me going back year after year is exactly what you've found in your medieval encampments ... the shared fellowship, camp coffee, and split pea soup cooked over an open fire, the smell of smoke and deerskin leather and beaver pelts, the cameraderie of singing traditional songs in French and Native American languages, the adventure of rescuing people who've fallen from their boats into the lake, or splashing with our oars as we pass those who are safe and sound. [img]smilies/wink.gif[/img]

The playing pranks on each other, ranging from crabapple wars (this handy fruit doubles as both a missile weapon and can also be used to stuff unattended shoes) ... to unexpectedly producing as if by magic, a skunk pelt offered to trade with a straight face right after having jumped out at the canoe unawares with a formidable war cry.

The time one man mistakenly thought that the beaver pelt hanging from my belt was a human scalp ..., the time a wide-eyed child crept up to me where I was laying in wait for the canoe in the forest and asked, "Are you the Indian of the Woods?"

All I've described ... isn't it a far more real and rewarding an experience than watching tv?

I'd say you're in good company, Tirned Tinnu, ... indeed, I'd venture to put you in the company of Tolkien himself when it comes to the feelings you relate. * bows *

At your Service,

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Old 09-15-2002, 08:45 PM   #6
Tigerlily Gamgee
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The words have been taken from my mouth!

My job requires me to dress and live in another time period (though it doesn't date back but a 100 years), but still, I know what you mean. My fellow workers and I are like a family, our own community & I love it. We always go back for each other and for the job (not for the money, cause it's not much!)

Also, when I attend the Renaissance Festival I never want to go home. It's crazy. I often feel as though I was born in the wrong time period (either that or I was reincarnated with a deep imprint of a former life in Mediaevil days). I like computers because I have a lot of friends that I only know by computer and they are unique to have. I also like them for things such as The Barrow Downs. But I am sick of seeing beautiful forests getting torn down for houses. I think that civilization has reached an expanding limit, yet we continue to build build build, and forget what nature has already built for us.
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Old 09-16-2002, 10:28 AM   #7
Tirned Tinnu
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Gandalf, Arwen, Darkrose, Lathspell and Tigerlily, thank you for your replies!
Ah, Gandalf, I had heard of the group fo which you speak! I have met a fur-trader in my travels! I too, enjoy canoeing (whitewater and bay) as a hobby - alas that I cannot do it as a living, for I would surely be in my element. Have you Native blood? it's a typical myth (or so I hear) in my family that there is some native blood (you know, the Tory meets the indian princees tale.)
I enjoyed your reply immensely!
Do tell us more.
I am also a lover of pea/bean soup cooked in a cauldron over a fire! I remember my cookmates telling me, "This won't take long to cook," (from dried beans?! Hours in a conventional cookpot, I thought.) It took 20 minutes, and tasted like - like - joy itself!
Amazing. Not for nothing did they lug those iron pots about. Technology? BAH!

I have long despaired of having to leave my family behind on such outtings. I wish they would come, and see! Alas, the advent of the hair-drier has made women slaves to technology. I cannot pursuade many of them these days to give it up. If I had my choice, I would live out of a tent (or a cabin) and give up electricity rather than suffer the outrageous bills they send to me every month. You know, when the lights were turned off last month I was overjoyed to have forced my husband to use candles and to learn to live by the sun. It was one of the most restful weeks I've ever spent with him. (Not to mention that I look far better in candlelight, hoho!)

As for fire and cheer, I find gathering at the hearthfire much more wonderful than gathering at the television. Trading tales, singing, performing skits (even little rounds of Shakespeare or small bits of Norse sagas - what about Tolkien's poetry!), being hypnotized by the sound of a harp or a voice of gold is so much more rewarding. I could tell you stories.....!
There's so much more to life when things are harder. Suddenly one feels alive! So many today complain that they cannot feel themselves anymore...put them in a cold encampment and serve them a mug of hot broth, and then see what they say, their teeth chattering and their cheeks turning rosy-red as they realize the importance of food!
It's pain and stuggle that made the human race what it is today. Perhaps there would be less fat sluggish Americans if they had to fight more to survive! Drag them from their computer keyboards and into the wild, I say. it'd be a common cure for what ails our society, I tell you.

Oh, dear, I believe I've been ranting. Please excuse me. Two weeks till I will get a taste of a walk in the woods, and I'm chafing at the bit. Ah, it will come soon enough.

[ September 16, 2002: Message edited by: Tirned Tinnu ]
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Old 09-16-2002, 02:08 PM   #8
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Beautiful first topic [ and conratulations for bothering to search to see of it had been doen before! surely you have entered into Underhill's private hall of fame!].

I had an opprotunity to live outdoors for 7 month's or so each year for 5 years on Orcas Island [ as close to paradise I have ever come]each extended summer.And one of theyears in the middle of that I lived in a taoist/Steiner community way off of the grid and extermely simply/monastically on a remote island in Canad.

On Orcas though, I lived under a large tree w/ my girlfriend [now wife] and it was amazing. I ate raw foods, spent 4-5 hrs a day doing various taoist practices I had learned, and I have never felt so 'elvish'. I slept very little[ 4-5 hrs was perfect and i wopuld wake up w/ a completely clear head], my mind was sharp my energy levels werre very high, my emotions were clear, my voice was more clear than it ever has been since on several 3 month periods, my desire for popular culture was 0%.Oh and btw Osanwe was decidely more noticable.

Those were hands down the happiest of my life. I miss them greatly, and hope as my kids get older I can move back in that direction [ not that tree it has been co-opted by development].

any way the wise soul will endeavor to incorporate as much simplicity as posiible and as little 'gadgetry' as absolutely necessary. Common sense.

again TT great topic. and don't feel you have to post at the N%N board just because you are new. but this is a nice post here.

welcome aboard the coolest tolien board around, a virtual rivendell.

ps this very point was one of the reasons I loved Otherland so much as !Xabbu a bushman, was a major point of veiw character and we a re given many glimpses of a truly natural life.

I must add though before soemone else brings it up. Whre you will be happiest is being where you are supposed to be abd doing what you are truly supposed to do. Old world sensibilities and culture and nature are no substitue for a true spiritual life following God's will. even if that means being a desk jocky in a city. Doesn't mean you will not naturally long for nature and older culture though.

One reason why Orthodox Christianity is [reportedly ] the #1 growing form of Christianity in England though. It literally hasn't changed [ in a traditrioanl church at least] in over 900 or so years, and not much beofer that either. So it gives an ancient refuge to modern believers.

[ September 16, 2002: Message edited by: lindil ]
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Old 09-16-2002, 02:51 PM   #9
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Thank you, Lindil for that wonderful story!
My, my, you haved lived an interesting life.
I wonder, anyone else have stories related to life apart from 'civilzation'? I'm revelling in the fantastic writing, here.

As for Othodox Christianity - whew. You pegged me down solid. I'm afraid I'm one of the old ones, who likes to hear their mass in Latin, and prefers the beating of the breast. Old form, that. If you wish, and you have more information on the subject, you can PM me. I'd be glad to continue the conversation.
Speaking of which, I forgot to include the skills developed in medieval restoration. Battle skills, I mean. I've had lessons on Archery and self defense, and wresting. Fun stuff that. it hones the body as well as the mind. Oh, not to mention getting used to ancient armaments. Anyone else trained, too?
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Old 09-16-2002, 07:25 PM   #10
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whenever i go on backpacking trips with my youth group, i always love being out there, and when i come back, i long for the outdoors. being on my own. i went on a 42 mile backpack trip this summer with my youth group, and i still think about it all the time, and wish to go back.
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Old 09-17-2002, 10:24 AM   #11
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wow, Tin, you really got me at being born in the wrong era...

I would sometimes wish that I was born at the time of the Scandinavian sagas, or when the Celts had settled in Britain, or even in the 50s so I can have my character molded out of the turn many events like JFK, the Vietnam war,and even the moon landing (and not to mention all the peasant shirts I could ever want)

But seriously, I'd do anything to go back to where I was, three weeks ago, trekking along what might have been in my imagination the Misty Mountains.

Living life for a short period of time really taught me how to respect life itself. Life as we live it now is just so complex. Too complex.

I never wanted to leave and right that jeepney back to the "real world." I wish I would lie in a sleeping bag on top of Mount Madlum (where I was) and stare at the constellations until I fall asleep.
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Old 09-17-2002, 05:45 PM   #12
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Phew, Neferchoirwen, you mentioned the stars! They are one of the chief reasons to go out in the wild. I can remember, lounging on my back on summer nights when the stars were so miriad that I was nearly blinded by them.

Seeing the Milky Way is always entertaining, counting galaxies, and seeing meteor showers!
the last time I went upstate a friend of mine was facing me on the other side of the fire, telling a tale, when on a sudden, a giant burning ball traced the heavens for more than 5 seconds. We gasped, and pointed, past him, and my friend said, "Hey, I didn't know I was that entertaining!" We had to shout and laugh, for he had missed it!
[img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 09-18-2002, 08:31 AM   #13
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I love to get out of town for a few days, to climb hills and look the stars.
As a star-gazer, I can do without street-lighting. As a road-user, I'm not so sure.

There are some aspects of an older way of life that I would love to try but there are some I would find difficult to live with. My wife needed heavy-duty surgical intervention during the birth of both our children. She wouldn't have survived in the first half of the twentieth century, let alone the thirteenth.

Can I be a Viking like my ancestors during my holidays and return to the 21st century for the rest of the time?
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Old 09-18-2002, 05:18 PM   #14
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*Sighs*...and I thought I was the only one. My parents say I am obsessed and worry about me, but I can't help it. I definately suspect I have been born about 500 years too late. I'm not sure if I would enjoy a very primitive style of living, i.e. a tent (camping out every year with my family of 10 has cured me of that), but my dearest wish is to be - fairy tale though it is - a Medieval princess or noblewoman. A castle and estate in England is my dream home. I hate the modern styles of clothing. I like to look feminine, which is next to impossible in jeans and T-shirts. I am not brave enough (or perhaps crazy enough) to wear gowns all the time though. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] Competing strongly with that, though, is what I feel after watching Princess of Thieves - my all-time favorite movie after FotR. If I happened to be born without the benefit of noble birth, joining a band of outlaws, riding horses and practising archery would be wonderful as well...and probably more fun! From that, you can understand why most of my aquaintances think I haven't grown up yet, despite my level of intellect. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] I don't fantasize about living in Middle Earth, however. For whatever reason that may be...I'm not sure yet.
Well, I have to go for now, but I will be back. I'm sure I sounded like a complete loony, but maybe some here can identify. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 09-18-2002, 08:31 PM   #15
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Oh, good, there are others like me! I have always felt that the normal life was just a bit to tame for me, especially in the fall. Then, I get this urge to see lands that I have not set foot in before, and to hike in the woods. I thought I was just a bit crazy. Thank all of you for reconfirming my sanity somewhat.
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Old 09-18-2002, 08:49 PM   #16
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Speaking of all this trekking and mountain climbing, don't you guys know, that this year has been declared by the UN (I think) the "International Year of Mountains"? June of this year was the International Mountain Year.

Just a thought. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

[ September 18, 2002: Message edited by: Neferchoirwen ]
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Old 09-18-2002, 10:07 PM   #17
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I agree, and I totally understand. I once went through a stage when I really hated technology and I would be annoyed that I wasn't living in the times, back when there was supposedly magic and chivalry and castles--faeries and what have you. I still think that I would exchange anything to live then.
As Isobelle Carmody said, while writing "The Obernewtyn Chronicles":
"I dream of those other worlds and other places where life is enchantinly complicated, more honourable, and where there is still room for noble deeds and great quests; a world in which even a misfit might become a hero..."
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Old 09-19-2002, 12:59 AM   #18
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I gotta admit quite alot of times i have wished that i lived in Middle Earth.
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Old 09-19-2002, 02:32 AM   #19
Tirned Tinnu
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Selmo, in answer to your question, YES! You can be a Viking on Holiday and go back to RL the rest of the time. Lookup "Viking Recreation" on www.google.com, and I'm sure eventually you'll find a local restorationalist group in your area that likes being Vikings for the weekend.

I went upstate to hang out with my local Viking group, saw the stars, had roast pig - darn that took a long time to cook - and witnessed Viking society at play. Very interesting that they had a form of the caste system. If you wanted to join you started as a "slave" and owned no possesions. Then as you learned their system, you were slowly integrated until finally you bought your freedom, and started acumulating wealth. Once you had the correct tent, and all the gear, you could get yourself a few slaves. Then you'd be a lord. It was fun watching the group vote on whether or not one fellow had worked hard enought to warrant his freedom. The celebration of his newly voted in status was something to behold.
(Not to mention the copious amounts of mead that were available!) mmmmm... I love mead...!
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Old 09-19-2002, 09:23 PM   #20
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WOW. That is so cool.

One of the reasons why I'd like to escape the way we live today is that there is a huge lack of that human touch; and that the wonders of nature are seen as fearful, instead of entertaining.

Quote:
"Hey, I didn't know I was that entertaining!"
When I was at camp, my friend couldn't just believe that all that stars she was seeing were REAL. I thought it was really funny for a few seconds, but thinking about it later, it was sad. Nature is hardly appreciated, and most of us are just content with seeing it on TV, not knowing that there's more OUT THERE.

Gosh, I am sooo born in a wrong time.
[img]smilies/frown.gif[/img] [img]smilies/frown.gif[/img] [img]smilies/mad.gif[/img]
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Old 09-20-2002, 01:24 PM   #21
Tirned Tinnu
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Alright, complete confession time. I have often thought that if I brought the right lanterns, some of those boughs of sparkly tinsel wire (that you see in newage stores, for making childlike fairy-looking implements), and the right tent, I could create a look which might fit my estimates of a good "enchanted" encampment. Even Christmas lights would be nice, but out of place...what, bring a battery?! Heh,.. anyways...
I always toy about it in my brain. It would be funny to see my friends spellbound and drawn to a "Faery" campsite, where they would or should, encounter some entertainment. Perhaps a play, or even eghads, whattah performance, me as a storyteller. *sigh* But I'm a fiddler by trade, so it'd have to be a muscial group of a harpist a fiddle and perhaps an accordian... problem being after 10pm some campers with kiddies don't like that much noise! Eh, a sessun wiht a few lullabies at the end might be useful. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] I'm a crackpot, what? [img]smilies/tongue.gif[/img]

Every time I go to a medievalist campsite I dream of this. Yet there were so many times when I'd look across a campfire to see the merry face of a good friend and think, "This is the life."
No need for the faery encampment when the company's good and the hearth crackling.

[ September 20, 2002: Message edited by: Tirned Tinnu ]
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Old 09-20-2002, 06:31 PM   #22
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I always have dreamed of the day when someone who does not look quite human and has pointy ears will come and tell me that it is time to return home, to Middle-Earth. I would so be a Ranger.
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