Remembering a Gruelling Winter
Snow in Suter Brook Village
Port Moody City Hall Yard
To be trapped is a terrifying experience. Last winter was the worst I have ever experienced. For one week, I was trapped in my home, unable to get out and do my usual activity. The neighborhood was besieged by snow and ice. By the fifth day, I shouted, “Mother Nature! Stop being a frosty bitch!”
I was being tested to my limit by a force far beyond my control.
My mother heard me shouting and scolded: “Son, I am a mother too. Do not insult another one when I am at home.” However, I sensed that she was half-joking, dealing with a situation as frustrating to her as it was to me. We’d decided to live in Port Moody because of its mild climate, but Mother Nature caught us off guard. It was as if she had gotten she got bored with rainy winters.
To add to the frustration, the city of Port Moody was inept in accommodating seniors and people with mobility issues and assistive devices. Thin sheets of ice and snow covered my usual routes, and I had to drive so carefully to avoid slippery spots since they couldn’t clear the sidewalks well enough for my wheelchair to get up and around.
We didn’t know how to deal with what was perhaps a usual winter for the rest of Canada, but was a tiring one for us.
Gandalf Summons Shadowfax in Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
Gandalf & Shadowfax in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy
The horse was featured prominently in the Two Towers and the Return of the King as Gandalf the White’s mount and the Best Horse of Rohan. He was named after the coat of silver-grey.
Being called Gandalf’s “friend”, the Lord of All Horses provided a distinct advantage for the wizard in the quest to save the Middle Earth., enabling him to battle powerful enemies confidently and arrive in time when his aid is needed. Shadowfax was both a reward and an ally for the White Rider (See Chapter 5 of the Two Towers).
The pair’s relationship mirrors that of the Monk and the Dragon Horse (as discussed in the previous blog post) in Journey to the West in that the Rider depended on his horse to reach his goal. Furthermore, Both Gandalf and Xuanzang wree sages in their respective stories, despite their different cultural backgrounds.
Tolkien, J. R. R., (2012). Lord of the Rings: Two Towers. London: Harper Collins.
Today, The Fallen, the seventh Quinn Colson novel in Ace Atkins’ bestselling series, hits bookstores. To talk about his latest book, we caught up with the king of southern crime, who participated in our Five Questions segment. Don’t miss his answers below, Atkins’ gave some thoroughly entertaining responses! TRBS: The Fallen is really […]
via THE FALLEN: Five Questions with Ace Atkins — The Real Book Spy
The White Dragon is transformed into the White Horse (15:30 – 20: 45)
Journey to the West is one of the four primary classical novels in the Chinese Literature. In this story with 100 chapters, the monk, Xuanzang goes to the west to obtain and bring Buddhist Scriptures to China with his three disciples, Sun Wukong, Zhu Bajie, and Shā Wùjìng. Because the monk is the only human in the group and the teacher to the others, he gets to ride a white horse.
While their journey lasts more than a decade, the white horse does not last very long.
In chapter 15, the company arrives at a big stream and a white dragon appears out of the water to swallow the monk’s horse whole. Ironically, the white dragon, who is a son of the West Sea King and has been placed there as a punishment for destroying his father’s treasures, is supposed to help Xuanzang. Because he is hungry and bored after a long wait, the Dragon Prince has harmed the company, showing his violent temper.
For this mistake, a deity transforms the Prince into a white horse to replace the lost one. He accompanies the others for the journey and back to China. As a reward, he regains his original status and body at the end. Interestingly, he transforms back temporarily to fight a demon lord who imprisons his rider/master in chapter 30.
Because of the novel’s importance in China’s popular culture, the Dragon Horse has become a well-known stereotype. He is an indispensable aid to the heroes, strong, loyal, and able to outrun most monsters.
Wu, C. E. (16th century). Journey to the West. (A. C. Yu, Trans.). Chicago: University of Chicago. (Translated into English & published as two volumes in 1952).