Thursday, December 29, 2016

Despite the necessary interruptions of work I am gradually making progress...

The smaller tank (Panzer 1 ausf.b) is a cheap kit I bought via ebay and cracked on with immediately forgetting how extended periods at the desk and exposure to glue is apt to leave me discombobulated.
It was a kit the seller had started and botched up, stopping after four pieces. So I made some scratch built repairs and I will gradually paint up and weather it. It is tiny with a two man crew hence the  size comparison to the motorcycle combo! I am thoroughly lost in my own world whilst working on these, using the iPad to research the information required for the tanks, paint schemes, unit identification and weathering effects. I haven't considered how to present the models and it's likely they will be stand alone pieces until my skills improve for dioramas.

For now it is a work in progress as I view my other kits and salivate over potential future projects up for sale on ebay. My particular interest is early WW2 armour and armoured vehicles from the twenties and thirties. That's the geek coming out in me now.
As I slept very little last night and the little I had was of poor quality I was up at stupid o'clock today. To pass the time I read some blogs and a beer blog which was new to me led me to this...

I had never heard of them until today but I am making up for it now. Lullabys to send me to sleep...


Monday, December 26, 2016

Twas the day after Christmas and not a soul was stirring to disturb the peace until...

Yes, that blasted N*xt sale where middle-aged women / men in search of the elixir of youth enhancing clothing descend to spend their credit card and buy 'bargains'. Door slamming, shouting and running around like lemmings in tap shoes and generally disturbing the peace. Have you not spent enough? Are you not aware that overpriced tat made by the ruined fingers and eye sight of small children in Bangladesh is not essential to boost your self-esteem? Stay in bed, chill, drink a coffee or read a book, fuck the attractive neighbour whom you've lusted after for the past two years or walk the dog. But please do get off the materialistic treadmill and rediscover the joy of a life lived to the full.
I have to admit that this time round Christmas  was a very quiet one for us and I am heartily glad it is over. I watched the PBS channel on TV last night about the history of the early Christians and it made me reflect on matters spiritual and likewise the dissemination of the early church and its message. I wondered how they celebrated Christmas back then as the festival, whenever it was, clashed and competed with other beliefs such as Saturnalia, Mithras, Yule, etc...  What appeals to me is how, despite the authorities attempts to sanction correct forms of celebration, the ordinary people wanted a brief respite from the hard toil of their all too often short lives and feasted, drank to excess, fornicated and generally misbehaved during this time. Perhaps I am being the curmudgeon here and should not criticise those who want to shop but I can't help but think it is a needless activity. Eat, drink, fornicate and misbehave and so uphold the old traditions is preferable to queuing for more over priced tat and missing out on life.


Saturday, December 24, 2016

Shopping for the feastival is done. Well, it was completed two days ago as we bought food in for the Christmas meal. That's all that is required because the shops are, by and large, open the rest of the time. We gawped at the trolleys piled high with supplies for a three week siege, with alcohol, turkeys and chocolate in abundance. Our modest trolley wheeled to the check out and then into the shopping trolley and a bag which we walked home as the cars queued around the block. Madness I tell thee...

I haven't been blogging much because of the discomfort in my left arm which is exacerbated by typing on the computer. After two weeks of poor and interrupted sleep I took two days off work and slept for hours. I must have needed it but because my arm is feeling so uncomfortable (pins and needles, shooting pains, numbness and feeling hot) I have difficulty getting off to sleep and find I am sleeping in. Not good for getting to work on time!

That's enough about health and back to the joys of the season. I donated money to charity instead of sending cards; bought presents for nearest and dearest and sent cards to the latter as well. A Christmas Carol is on this evening which I will enjoy watching for the umpteenth time. I am also listening to Christmas carols on the internet, some medieval and many from Tudor times. All getting me in the spirit of things. Drink aplenty is in including some excellent Belgian beers and Port and we are having beef for the main meal. No.1 son is having vegan pies and Mrs C is making vegan Yorkshire puds and gravy for us all. So a family meal after all. The cats and dog will inevitably be treated plus the inevitable scraps. I am looking forward to it.

I wish you all a Merry Christmas and joy, happiness and a celebration of whatever moves and delights you this Christ Mass / Saturnalia / Good Yule. Light, warmth, good food and drink and excellent company. Enjoy!

Saturday, December 17, 2016

The widget is getting bigger and as we have discovered, she has a big attitude to everything around her. This includes bullying the bigger cats to get their food, climbing into everything and lots of nocturnal activity which encourages the others to join in. Lively and mischievous, the prerequisites for a kitten.
I haven't blogged much this month because it is very much the same old, same old. Work plus ill health. Having seen the doctor who diagnosed cervical spondylosis I  will be attending for a MRI scan. I experience numbness, pins and needles and pain in my left arm although happily I can still use my arm. Unfortunately it disrupts my sleep which doesn't improve my general disposition. So a combination of gentle exercises and pain relief is the order of the day. It has given me pause for thought and I believe some lifestyle changes will be required after the holiday period. I was examined by medical students under the watchful eye of the GP whom I know well and we both suffer with this as we discussed rugby, bicycle accidents, caving, climbing and the time I fell twenty feet from a tree. No wonder my neck is knackered.

Otherwise we are generally ready for the madness to engulf us. Apart from a couple of cards sent to relatives who don't do I.T., I am donating to (a proper non-nannying) charity and everyone else will receive electronic greetings. No.1 son is a vegan so he will have a stir fry for his main Xmas meal and we are opting for roast beef. Beers and wine have been bought in and next week a couple of small shopping trips will suffice to ensure feline and canine needs are met. A work colleague was surprised when she asked me my Xmas plans and I replied reading, walking and military modelling... a lovely quiet time at home with family and I will avoid all media apart from music and DVD's. With bird flu down the road, the middle east in its default position of hatred and war plus politicians and righteous puritans spouting their usual hypocritical nonsense I intend to divorce myself from the world for a period of time. I will be working one day in the middle of the holiday but apart from that it will be family and friends only. I must away as there is a cup of tea with my name on it.

Friday, December 02, 2016

A welcome day off and I am sipping fresh brewed coffee and listening to (close your eyes and cover your ears Blue Witch!) Christmas songs. Doubly welcome today as the past week has been 'one of those weeks!'

The picture above shows the troublesome tooth I have been worrying at for the past two weeks as it was loose and wobbly. Toothache dealt with via pain killers and whisky eventually saw me remove the offending tooth finally the other evening. It really is a 'Don't do this at home kids, go see your dentist' homily because my level of stupidity in doing this exceeds 11 on the volume button. It is done now and when I see my dentist in January for my regular appointment to have it removed she will find the job's already been done.
The  other reasons for the welcome day off includes dreadful shoulder / neck pain which is more worrying, an ex-patient of mine who was subjected to arson by feral scrotes and a very busy work schedule. But a welcome night out tonight with friends for a meal and to let our hair down should also help. Plus... I am looking forward to the festive season!