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Safety and the movies… The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey 

By Lauren Smith

Clearly Bilbo Baggins never went to Scouts, otherwise he would’ve considered the “be prepared” motto on his unexpected journey.

The long awaited prequel to the Lord of the Rings (LoTR) trilogy is finally here. But before you pontificate about what the second Hobbit film will entail, we can learn a few lessons from Bilbo’s expedition this time.

Disclaimer: I would not call myself a devoted LoTR fan girl. If you speak Sindarin or have seen the extended editions of all three LoTR movies, please bear with me if my there are any inaccuracies in my references to the Middle-earth universe.

1. Get your lace on


Not only is wearing the appropriate equipment necessary on the job, it’s also necessary when you travel.

You wouldn’t enter a construction site without a hard hat and steel toed boots, and you should never go adventuring without the appropriate footwear. I was pleased to see Bilbo packed a bag full of necessities for his journey, but he forgot a very important piece of attire – shoes!

Yes, he’s a hobbit and they have very leathery soles, thus they tend to not wear shoes – I get it. However, when exploring new lands, you never know what environments you could expose your tootsies to. So remember to lace up, Velcro up or slip on. Foot gear is always in style when out on a journey – especially an unexpected journey.

2. Plan ahead

stone giants

Whether driving somewhere for your job or exploring new lands on foot, map out your route ahead of your departure.

This will help you to be better prepared for what you might encounter during your travels. If Bilbo and the Dwarves had planned their journey ahead of time, they might’ve avoided being caught in the battle between the Stone Giants in the Misty Mountains.

I guess you could say they found themselves between a rock and a hard place (boom tish).

3. Trust your gut


If something feels wrong, think twice and speak up.

Bilbo didn’t want to sneak around the Trolls to get the Dwarves’ horses back, but he didn’t think he had a choice.

You always have a choice, especially on the job.

Stopping to think something through can help prevent unnecessarily dangerous scenarios, like trolls capturing all your adventure buddies and roasting them over a fire. Food for thought.

My last word: an enjoyable but risky business

Whether you relate to Hobbits or fancy yourself as more of an Elvish folk, remember to work smart, work safe, and “be prepared.”

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