Thursday, May 17, 2007

Summer trip thoughts... and stuff...

Wow - over 1000 visitors since I started the Blog in earnest back at the end of February...!! My site counter has a statistics option that tells me that of the 1000 odd visitors who've visited, roughly half of them are unique visitors - so basically it looks like I'm getting repeat visits which is quite nice, and being a humble soul, not what I would have expected at all...! J

Yesterday evening I started the basing operations for the Dervish cavalry and British infantry I painted over the weekend - basically getting the bases cut and painted, and figures glued to them. The new spray varnish that I bought, despite saying Matt on the can, gives a slightly gloss finish to the figures - I've always preferred a matte finish, but I have to say that I quite like the gloss look - it tends to give depth to the colours... I was going to get some pictures last night, but decided to wait until I had got the flocking and other terrain effects on.

Otherwise it's quite quiet on the wargaming front at the moment - I continue to read a huge parcel of 'Practical Wargamer' magazines I obtained on eBay, and yesterday I heard from John Tunstill (of 'Discovering Wargames' fame) that a batch of "Wargamers' Newsletters" I bought are also on the way from Italy - especially looking forward to that..
On the book front I'm three quarters of the way through "Front Line" by Richard Holmes, that Darrell (my regular wargaming buddy) lent me. It's one of his early books, and written I think before he developed his style - absolutely fascinating, but I think it suffers slightly by having too many examples and analogies, if that's possible... Slighlty lighter, I'm also reading the Harry Pearson book (picture to the right) on his early life in wargaming, and wargaming history in general - absolutely brilliant - and laugh out loud funny much to my wife's disgust! I especially liked his discussion on what it was like being the father to a little girl as it definitely struck some chords... the story of him lying in the bath under the gaze of 14 naked Barbies was apt, having two girls I have slightly more than that round the edge of our bath... and how he'd hoped for a boy (but only because it gave him the excuse to buy more miniatures on the pretense they were for the child!), but when it turned out to be a girl he eventually discovers that it doesn't make a lot of difference as the average adult male can't figure out what's going on a little boys brain, any more than he can a little girls - and in fact the average adult male has considerable difficulty figuring out what's going on in his own brain! Amen to that..... well recommended.

I have also been advised by my wife (who is truly an angel) that I have permission to slope off for a couple of nights next month... regular readers may remember that last year I visited the English Civil War battlefields of Roundway Down, and Landsdown - this year under the influence of new projects and interests I intend visiting Sedgemoor and Langport... Sedgemoor (follow this link to the Battlefields Trust site which I totally recommend) mainly because it was the site of Marlborough's first victory (against the rebel Duke of Monmouth) in July 1685 - the local tourist office have been really helpful and I already have some literature, maps, and a battlefield guide... Langport on the other hand is one of the lesser known English Civil War battles and was between Sir Thomas Fairfax commanding the Parliamentary forces, and Lord George Goring commanding the Royalists. The battle was in July 1645 (so exactly 40 years before Sedgemoor) and and was a Parliamentary victory which arguably led to the Royalist loss of the city of Bristol. I'll base myself in Bath (just because I think it is a truly lovely place with a nice ambience - oh, and home to a very decent pub I know..J), and my other plan is to visit Bovington which is home to the Tank Museum... it's beginning to look like it will be an excellent few days! As I find more about the battles over the next few weeks I'll post further....

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