Sunday, October 24, 2021

 Look who I discovered in the back room yesterday evening! He had no interest in the bowls of food put out for our tribe but he accepted some ham from my hand. He remains very wary and he looked to be in reasonable shape close up. He allowed me one stroke of his head but no more as he is extremely nervous.

He settled down for an hour although we left the back door ajar so that he could escape which he later did. We believe he is owned by the alcoholic couple who live in a neighbouring street as they have several un-neutered cats that come and go. I think he just wanted a warm comfy place to kip for an hour or so. One problem is that he has fleas so that comfy weatherproof box outside is now a priority.

I have been getting a stock of books in for the next six months including one for the next build...

I've read it through twice already since it arrived yesterday and spotted the first discrepancy in the kit decals compared with a very well researched book. I will be going back down the rabbit hole to research this kit because I would really like to do a good job of it. So today will be research and enjoying a very lazy day plus avoiding all media as the fauxines, now becoming more Kafkaesque by the day.


Friday, October 22, 2021


Finally completed the build although a sandy wash and some weathering will enhance it. I started the rigging but superglue woes brought that to an abrupt halt.

The upper wing should be a couple of millimetres forward but overall I am happy with it.

I am keen to start the next build and excited by this kit and I love the history behind this aircraft. It will keep me occupied for the next few weeks and hopefully I can get some evenings in as well. Again, a biplane from the thirties that fought in the second world war and used until the fifties, to a modern jet bomber developed and used in the war and cutting edge technology for 1945. The Cr 32 was used in the Spanish civil war and this model depicts a circa 1940 aircraft of the East African campaign. 

I mention the evenings because sadly I get home, have my dinner and crash in front of old British comedies on the TV or read books. I'm too tired for anything else because work is now crazy busy. The NHS is falling to pieces and I believe it is deliberate. There are far too many politicians in the previous and current governments with a financial interest in private healthcare and a desire to remove the NHS. I believe the NHS needs to be reviewed and changed as it is top heavy with managers and useless fifth wheel employees who add nothing to healthcare. Plus a bizarre internal market with a bureaucracy that would bring a tear of happiness to former Soviet Union apparatchiks seeing the Byzantine machinations in action. 

It has also been a bad week as my young cousin died from cancer and another patient died this week. I wrote in previous blogs that modelling , music and books provide my escapes from the nonsense that currently passes for reality.  But this and the latest email from a senior manager about the non-vaxxed staff plus the intense workload makes this more important than ever. I also worry about the impact of more threatened restrictions from the media with government connivance upon the patients I work with as we are seeing more than ever, people who are struggling to cope and losing hope. It is all a mess.

On a brighter note, the 'stray' cat Blue Collar had been turning up for food and looking longingly into the house and I discovered another family has been feeding him as well. We now believe he does have a home somewhere and it might be the alkies who live in a neighbouring street. They have several cats, none of them neutered and they come and go freely from the house. Sherlock took matters into his own paws one evening this week and chased Blue Collar away. Perhaps he will stay more at his own home now but I fully expect him to turn up for a free meal in the near future.

I would like to add the following and a welcome reminder for me that I do live in a nice area and somewhere well worth a visit.


Keep well and safe folks.


Sunday, October 17, 2021

                                 Patience dear boy, patience.

I have glued five of the longer wing struts and must now leave it well alone for a few hours. I will then glue the others and accept this will take some time. Past experience has taught me this and to leave well alone.

Dusting off some of the displayed completed builds and I can't recall posting the above completed Spitfire diorama.

Yesterday Sue and I had a discussion about our plans for the next several months. This came about because we had been debating what to do about the 'stray' cat whom we call Blue Collar. He obviously has an owner because he has a new collar and bell but he is filthy, looks underfed and there is evidence of some old untended injuries (This sounds familiar, Fluffy 2, the sequel!). Someone who lives a couple of streets away stated the same about Blue Collar on facebook in the cats lost and found group we belong to. The plans include removing the tree in the back garden and getting the damp course completed in the spring / summer. Sue suggested I continue saving up for this and a newish car next spring because of the uncertainty about the future. She is adamant she will not have a booster because she questions the narrative around it all but she is concerned that if the fauxines are mandatory for NHS staff I will be forced out of work. Hence the plans to save for necessary work in the house and we discussed what I would do if this came to pass. Another raised bed or two as I will have the time to tend to them, learning some further DIY skills for the wall and gate repairs. As for Blue Collar...he allowed me to briefly stroke him but then hissed and ran off after I fed him some turkey yesterday. We'll make a small shelter in the garden which he can use as the weather is changing and Maisie, who is semi-feral and a gives a good indication of the changing seasons, has spent more time indoors this past week.


Saturday, October 16, 2021

 After the sad death of David Amess MP yesterday, allegedly murdered by an Islamist terrorist I left off posting a blog until today. I shan't say any more but that is two MP's murdered within the last five years.

I will stick with my usual modelling and after a week of having to stay away from the desk as a consequence of slicing off a chunk of my left thumb. A new build and a new craft blade and inevitably carelessness as I had become used to wielding a blunter blade.

Progress from yesterday and a base coat of thinned layers of buff, earth highlights and finally desert sand. Today I added some olive green paint and when dry I gave it a clear coat of polish.

The difficult part will come tomorrow which is gluing in the top wing without breaking parts off or leaving gaps between struts and wing. Once that is done, decals on and weathering. I am already considering my next build but I'll give that some thought.

I am reading the following...

I can thoroughly recommend this but only if you are broadminded and have a sense of humour. I haven't stopped laughing and she really is a treasure although I am sure she would bluntly rebuff such a description. Humour is definitely required, more than ever and to challenge the closed minds of bigots everywhere.

Be safe folks and enjoy life.


Friday, October 08, 2021

 It's good to have a day off after another very busy week with early starts and late finishes.We are very short staffed and the Track and Trace pinging people who despite the double jab, no evidence of any illness and negative lateral tests were forced to go home and do telephone work. What an utter pantomime! Another team member has left this week and we really are down to the bare bones of a team and much of the time has been spent firefighting crises. But enough of that nonsense as I have much needed days off.

As an aside I was given a tour of some old medieval ruins this week or rather, some of the scattered stonework from an old abbey. I have received permission to take photos the next time I view them and hopefully I can also walk around the site of the abbey itself if we get permission to do so. There isn't much to see beyond some stonework and the bumps and dips that show where the abbey buildings were plus the old fish ponds and earthworks. There is an old Saxon graveyard but there is even less evidence of anything of that above ground. 

I did some work on the Fiat CR-32 until I lost a part and despite a search of the immediate area I couldn't find it. It is one of the main wheels so I shall scrabble through my spares boxes for a suitable replacement. As I type this the smallest cat Mindy has made herself at home on the table so I have definitely finished for now. I ordered a new kit which is another of the German late war jet aircraft, a bomber this time and a very interesting machine. Happily it arrived too late to make a difference but it was very successful and if it had arrived earlier in the war it could have made the eventual Allied victory somewhat more difficult. It might be that I build this next because as I have blogged before I am fascinated by the early jets and the impact of new technology.

My weekend will be spent quietly as most of my weekends are during these somewhat strange days as I again avoid the news and other assorted fairy tales in the media. I have a copy of 'Tombland' by C J Sansom to read and I thoroughly enjoy his stories set in Tudor England, another period of great change and upset. Have a great weekend folks.


Sunday, October 03, 2021

 The final day of my time off and the latest model update. The Messerschmitt Bf 109 G12 is finally completed although I am not happy with the paint job. That's down to poor research by me but I have learned a lot about late war Luftwaffe paint schemes and for this build it will do.

I think I rushed the canopy part of the build and it doesn't sit right but again it will do.

I didn't add any weathering or wear and tear because by the spring of 1945 there was a surplus of new aircraft but a shortage of experienced pilots, a lack of fuel and oil. There are stories of the ground crew using horses and even oxen to move aircraft into position for take off to save on fuel! 

Photos taken with two lights set up, a daylight lamp and a LED light which I use for modelling and the flash turned off on the mobile phone camera.

All in all an enjoyable but also at times a frustrating build which has taught me more and also confirms the need for good research. The old measure twice, once more for luck and then cut comes to mind. The next build as shown in a previous blog post has been started and it will be in this livery...

Appropriately enough it will complement the Vickers Wellesley I recently built as one of the opposing aircraft. But for the rest of today I will have a very lazy day with the cats and podcasts. Following the cold I feel tired and sleepy and Sue is now suffering the effects of a similar cold. I tested negative for Sars-Cov 2 so I know this is just another autumn cold but it is a nasty one and from social media, there are a lot of people who have caught it. I think the week ahead will sadly consist of work and sleep as I catch up on the latter.  I worry that the cumulative effects of work and the general grind of the madness the world has descended into has exhausted me physically, emotionally and mentally. Sadly, I think many others are in the same boat and I do worry what the future will bring. Sleep and avoiding mainstream and social media might be helpful. take care folks and look after yourselves and loved ones.


Saturday, October 02, 2021

 The good news today is that my cold is finally receding...the bad news is that Sue now has it and today this happened...

As I waited for the paint to dry on the Messerschmitt 109 build I made a start on the Fiat CR 32 and a new build requires a new blade. There is a standing joke in the modelling community that with a new build and blade a blood sacrifice will be required. Generally, it is because a fresh and very sharp blade inevitably sees some clumsy use of the blade and blood is spilt. Exactly the case here as I tried to remove some excess sprue and sliced my thumb open. Claret everywhere and after washing the wound out under the tap I applied two plasters. Work now stopped for the day as I allow the wound to heal and avoid spilling more blood everywhere. 

The cold is going and I will be hale and hearty for my return to work on Monday and hopefully I won't be the only team member in. But during my time off I caught up on podcasts but also the Kolchak series  from the early seventies, the precursor for the X-Files plus some episodes of 'Blake's 7' on TV. The latter a Science Fiction series from the late seventies with dodgy sets, terrible special effects and on a par with late seventies Dr Who. Dreadful but also enjoyable to watch. I do enjoy ropey old horror and science fiction movies and TV although I admit to not enjoying slasher / bloody movies. I believe that the anticipation of fear, horror and terror is what appeals to me, not graphic blood fests  and probably one reason why I dislike zombie movies. It is also about enjoying the thrill of fear and terror in a safe controlled fashion which is why horror and ghost movies / stories  do well as well as safely experiencing the unknown. I guess seeing Blake's 7 again and Servalan which for a seventeen year old boy was exciting.

Time to staunch the flow again and replace the plasters.