A gaming catchup

For nearly my entire expat experience of 2 plus decades I have managed a yearly catchup with a good mate: a few beers, some nibbles and a game or two in his gaming room*. After a two year COVID forced hiatus, he and I were able to once again resume my run of bad-luck as a victory turned into a defeat just as a battle concluded and my 1’s were trumped by his 6’s.

So two quick games, the first Romans on Romans using Hail Caesar, a failure to charge home by my cavalry saw the battle turn against me very early on as I defended a ridge. Then an American War of Independence game using Black Powder, where a straight slog saw some initial lucky rolls turn in the later part of the battle as a near run thing came down to the last turn…and the dice do not like me. It was the second game that has me reflecting more and more on the rules I use especially given the popularity of Black Powder for many of my favourite periods, but… (And those but’s probably need a musing all to themselves)

Apologies for the poor quality of the photos, full blame for this goes to me.

Thanks to Greg for the great game and hospitality.

* This gaming room has served as the benchmark since the first time I ever stepped into it; part library, part gentleman’s club, part bar, part military museum with a wargaming table, it is quite simply, inspirational. And something I have always aspired too.

Reading (still): Welker, David A., The Cornfield, Antietam’s bloody turning point. (2020) ISBN: 978-1-61200-832-5

Life, Gaming & Blogging

I guess the above title can be an “order of operations” when it comes to the day to day for many of us, life tends to trump the other two, or at least cast a shadow over them for a time. And thus has been the case with me.

Mid November I set myself the goal of producing a new 3D model every month for the next year. The idea being to add them to my online store and increase the products I have on offer while also blogging my progress for motivation. Following no theme save that which takes my fancy, I was determined to keep to my goal, thus in December I made the Dunker Church available and planned to follow up with the Lutheran Church, a generic Wooden Church, the Twin houses from the Battle of Seven Pines, then the Shiloh Church to see me well into the calendar year. This plan is still intact and apart from a minor hiccup or two is still on track.

Then in December everything changed, International borders (with lots of hoop jumping) began the first steps to opening, and after 2 years away I could get home to see my ailing father and offer some in-person support to my mother who is doing an amazing job caring for him. Parkinson’s and Dementia are two whacks from the old age stick that really takes a toll on those around the sufferer. With option now on the table the end of Dec and early Jan would be lived with a focus on seeing parents, supporting them, and jumping through Government hoops required to be allowed to travel. And while it was a very emotionally tiring time, while home my Dad in a moment of clarity asked me “was I meeting Greg to have your yearly game”, and while I had not planned too, at his insistence a game was hastily arranged, and after a 2 year hiatus I got to meet up with my good friend who has influenced my wargaming so often since I took my first tentative ESCI Plastic Soldier steps. (some rather poor photos of the game will follow in a later post)

Now if those two elements were not alone enough to explain how life overshadowed the “Gaming & Blogging”, with travel home now on the table SWMBA* suggested that the can we had been kicking down the road waiting for an end to COVID be picked up. Which is a convoluted way of saying that my fiance suggested that heading home as “husband and wife” would be wonderful. So the end of November and early December were spent in the very hasty planning of our wedding. This went off largely without a hitch a week before we flew to see my parents. So while I am of course very happy with this turn of events and it was the best way to end last year and start 2022 on a high it did impact my Hobby time*.

Added to that my Birthday week is happening now as I return from my parents to the country of my employ and hangovers of course are not really conducive to painting and modelling. So while it’s a happy 52nd birthday to me, I’m not really looking forward to heading back to work next week, but bills to be paid and all that…

So that’s a little update as a way of explanation/excuse. More regular posting should resume as I start to take stock and further work on my planned projects, but I do expect that blogging will always be on the back-burner for me, though I do mean to catch up and start to comment more regularly on some of the great and inspiring work I find others posting since I have been stalking but not commenting in the last months. Mea Culpa.

* She Who Must Be Adored

** Though to be fair to my wife, she totally supports my hobby, and as we start the house looking process to combine our two homes into one, she asked for three things: a bar, a gaming room, and a large closet, preferable walk-in. Even better she wanted them in that order.

Reading (still): Welker, David A., The Cornfield, Antietam’s bloody turning point. (2020) ISBN: 978-1-61200-832-5