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Hobbit's Weed - Global
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Fred Severo & How Hobbit's
Weed Was Born
Long ago, a youthful character happened across an
magical blend of pipe tobacco in a small tobacco shop.
so taken with the blend he returned frequently to replenish his
especially for his worldwide travels.
On one particular excursion, the tobacco blend proved more
than just the young man's personal treat. It would be his life
The young adventurer found himself backpacking
on the island
Anaconda on the Rio Nappo River in the remote Amazon
jungle of Ecuador.
the typical heavy rainfall
foggy day which would allow for a quest through the jungle
to try to find
an actual Anaconda. Only
three years earlier,
in this very location, a National Geographic expedition had
encountered one of
the last tribes of jungle Indians which
had never before seen white men - the Auca Indians.
tribe had been
the target for the Ecuadorian military who
were trying to break a road through
the jungle for oil
exploration. The Auca Indians had killed several of the
soldiers and the soldiers in turn had killed many of the
The young man's
guide and host was named
cautious local who knew the lay of the land, the native
spoke the local dialect of "Catchua"
language of the Inca. He was keenly aware
possible dangers ahead for strangers, too.
was already concerned on this day because he had seen
men the night
before who might be Auca Indians checking
out these strangers to their land.
Eventually he agreed to
guide the journey to find an anaconda and he tried to flag
a local boat to take them to the island. But not one
of the locals they
encountered was willing to stop at the
island. Angel finally found one
local boater who agreed
them back to his village where they could try
trading with the villagers for
a trip down river the next
The village appeared like a setting out of an Indiana
movie from the small rustic huts to the naked villagers going
about their daily tasks.
The young man tried to communicate
with the villagers, but to no
avail. This trading idea wasn't
panning out as planned. So far,
little hiking, no huge snake,
no boat and no good news for the rest of this day
Oh, and no way to communicate with the villagers who
with their daily duties, but not particularly
warm and inviting to strangers.
The young man was
obviously an outsider here and didn't seem to have the
to connect to the locals in any way.
in his canoe with no plans for the remainder
the day, he gave up and resigned
himself to simply
a few minutes alone here in the strange land
even offer him a single modern convenience.
He lit his pipe,
favorite blend in hand, of course.
Then a brightly dressed native appeared from one of the
huts and approached the boat. He said little, but
in the young hiker's direction with an expression that didn't
all whether he was angry or suspicious of the
stranger or just curious.
The native was clearly a leader
of a tribe - but what was he saying or thinking?
been so many casualties here - it would have been helpful
to know if
he thought he needed to defend his people from
the youthful traveler.
leader made gestures
toward the traveler
imitating the pipe smoking as he advanced toward him.
Okay - finally a way to communicate with the leader.
The young man knew
instinctively to hand over the pipe.
The leader took
the pipe and began to smoke it with little
expression in his face. A minute later he was clearly asking
not for my
pipe, but for the pipe tobacco! The young man
understood and gave the
leader the remainder of the tobacco
he had on hand.
A big smile came across
the leader's face and the two then
began negotiations in sign language. It was apparent that
he was going to
send a boat and take Angel and his young
traveler to the next town down river some
eight hours away.
The leader, the young man came to find, was the highly
honored medicine man of his tribe - the Auca
despite his high rank among his people, the leader spent a
full day as a personal escort for the young traveler.
This young traveler was named Dave Tewksbury.
This pipe tobacco was Hobbit's Weed.
This unlikely friendship really did happen.
This story is not actually legend,
but Hobbit's Weed actually IS legendary!
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March 04, 2011
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