Well, I got up at 7AM this morning, after a well deserved lie in, and harnessed up the pack which roam the grounds of the manse to savage any intruders.
I normally walk them a lot early on a local field and so at 7AM they were more than ready for some exercise - Which they never got, in the end!
I was slowly ascending a steep path when two of the pack ran around my legs, acting like a bolas. I went down like a brick and I am not a small fellow. I stood up. took four steps and then realised that something was wroong in my chest.
Anyway, I ended up in casualty with some of society's finest examples of hopeless causes and a number of police constables, who had obviously been busy. One member of the Watch spent a good five minutes giving me the eyeball, and as is the custom, I smiled and stared right back...
And so, it looks like I have some broken ribs, high on the left of my chest. I'm dosed up to high heavens on every kind of pain killer short of morphine, and feel rather poorly.
Thus I have crawled to my desk in the studio, to write a few word and keep my mind off the pain I am in. It really is quite exquisite...
And so, another year is at an end. It's been an odd one.
For the first time in my life I did not go to the Sheffield Triples. I'll not go over all that crap again, but even the Show Secretary of SWS trying to get me to accept a handful of tickets was not going to tempt me, because frankly, it wasn't worth the grief or the time. Still, it felt rather odd and left me with an empty feeling.
Vapnartak at York was great, whilst the Newark shows were absolute rubbish. At the Spring Partizan the breakfast catering was managed I believe by a descendant of Typhoid Mary. After a 20 minute wait for a sandwich it appeared that the egg had not even been introduced to the pan , but rather cracked onto the sandwich in the hope that the bacon would cook it with it's own heat.
Derby Roundhouse was the venue for a rather wonderful model railway show, which organisers of any and I mean ANY wargames show should attend, to see how a show should and can be run. I mean it - you lazy buggers have a lot to learn about hospitality, engagement and P.R.
I've done very little gaming, but I have two model railroads under construction and a third at the planning stage. This interest in model railways will undoubtedly continue, but I am also finding my wargaming mojo again, having backed the TAG Dwarf Kickstarter to the £400 pledge level, meaning I have around 500 models on the way and a LOT of freebies. My plan is to get these painted and then maybe paint a 28mm 100YW army using the new Perry plastics.
It's really odd to think that I am no longer part of an organised club (nor I think would they have me back if I wanted) and I miss my friends, but I'll be damned if I will stifle myself just fit a collective view which is flawed, unimaginative and so bigoted. Yeah, I am outspoken and offensive at times, but that's who I am... I can live with it, so long as I am speaking from the heart. It gives me no pleasure when things go the way I predicted and likewise 'I told you so' gives little satisfaction other than proving to myself I was correct all along. Ah well...
2015 saw the loss of two friends, both ahead of their time. One was a wargamer and the other a re-enactor, but both were warm and funny guys with a real grasp and love of their hobbies. Both had a lot more to give.
Alex & Trevor I have drunk your health this Christmas and will do so again on New Year. You are missed...
Looking ahead to 2016, I am already planning meet-ups with some wargaming mates from way back, and there's talk of 'getting the band back together' for a few projects involving games, conventions and other commercial ventures. It will be an exciting time. I'm also looking at getting back into club gaming and due to various factors I am looking both at Sheffield, Rotherham and West Yorkshire. I'm in no real rush because A. I am busy and B. I know that it will not be the same as my old club, so my list of requirements will be different and thus a careful choice will need to be made.
My model railroading interests mean trips again to Derby and York. The York show at the racecourse, as I have written previously is awesome, and you can get a lot of stuff useful to wargamers. And of course the sheer beauty of the model making makes it a worthwhile trip and VERY family friendly whatever the age of the visitor.
On a more sombre note, it has come to my attention that a certain trader and a certain gamer whom for now will remain anonymous, both have figures belonging to a third party which should be returned to his family as a matter of urgency.
Shame on you both!
Anyway, we'll collectively remind you both at shows and indeed I or any of my associates will gladly act as middle men to facilitate the return of the figures in question and will issue receipts.
And with that, I will bid you all a very happy and prosperous new year.