Ok, as for the Rivendell/Shire debate, I've given this a lot of thought as I've been watching (and re-watching) The Hobbit this week and here is my final answer:
I am sticking with my original: The Shire.
Why? Because Rob was right. Do I really need to live like a troll among immortal supermodels? And I kind of view Rivendell as this quiet, serene, relaxing spa retreat/getaway. I'd like to visit for sure, but live there? It'll get weird after a while.
At the Shire, i get to eat good food, feel cozy. live simply and read and write letters on a grassy knoll under a huge tree all day. Maybe i'll learn to garden. Someone's bound to teach me. And what will i learn from the elves other than to constantly control my thoughts lest Galadriel's serenely and beautifully lurking around the corner. And hear [eventually boring, let's face it) stories from 1,000 years ago about this epic battle and that, etc etc, blah blah blah.
Maybe I'll just be like Bilbo and escape to Rivendell when I need some R&R, or an adventure.
Plus shire foke speak at a normal rate. Elves haaave tooo taaalk aaallll slooow and maaaajeeestttic.
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