Above is a pic of Lt. Colonel James Galbraith, Regimental Colour in hand, alongside Bobbie the regimental dog and some of the other "Last Eleven" survivors of the 66th (Berkshire) Regiment, making their last stand in one of the walled gardens just South of Khig village, a few miles West of the Afghan town of Maiwand.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015



...than that he lend some of his own toy soldiers/miniatures/figures to a fellow wargamer.

Such a man is Michael 'Reggie" Davis, who has trusted me with just over 100 of his finest 28mm masterworks, for use in my Charasiab game at Colonial Barracks V.

Here's a LINK to Michael's wonderful HORSEANDMUSKET blog, on which he displays a wide range of gaming goodness, from cutting edge board and computer wargames, to his exquisitely painted Wars of the Roses, 18th Century Lace Wars, Napolenics, ACW, Colonial and WWII armies, plus amazing Age of Sail warships and WWI aircraft, to name just a few of his myriad gaminginterests!

I write this from the Drury Hotel on the East edge of Phoenix, Arizona, after a jampacked weekend which saw my partner and I deal with some work stuff via phone and email (all good but still demanding) while my wife and I flew to upstate New York to visit our son during "Freshman Parent Weekend" at his college, where he is 2 months into his first year.  Having not seen him for those past two months, I didn't want to miss the trip, though my wife had suggested I might want to stay home so I could use the weekend to prepare for my roadtrip to New Orleans.  Knowing better, I said after we got home on Sunday night, I would spend Monday packing and leave as early as possible on Tuesday... hahahahaha... yeah, that's what I said.

Well, Sunday our flight from Ithaca, New York to Newark Airport was delayed... so much we nearly missed the Newark-to-LA flight, which would have meant staying overnight in New Jersey, and not having any time at all to pack up the game.  Luckily we managed by the skin of our teeth to catch the plane home... but our one checked bag didn't.  Most important to me, in it was my razor, without which I'd have to spend more time I didn't have buying a new one before hitting the road.

First thing Monday I had to help my wife get her car -- which I needed in order to drive the game to the convention, since it's our only car big enough to fit the terrain boards -- back from the shop.  Luckily it came back in excellent shape.

Then I had to drive down to Michael Davis's place to borrow his troops -- THANK YOU AGAIN, MICHAEL!  The only bad thing about this wonderful part of the day (it was great getting the troops but also a lot of fun to have a chance to see Michael in person again, as he is a great guy and we have a lot in common, even within this niche hobby of ours) is that it meant spending several hours away from home, during which I WAS NOT PACKING!

When I finally got home, the first thing I had to do was pack up the remnants of the latest play-test game, which were still covering the table.  So about 600 figures to put away BEFORE I could start putting anything into the car... hahahahahahahah -- the laughs kept coming, all of them at my own expense!

Last time I packed up a big game (at least in my own humble terms) to take to a con, my son gave me a lot of help.  The times before that he and my buddy Matthew both chipped in.  This time, with my son across the country at school, my buddy Matthew understandably busy with other stuff, I was pretty much on my own.  Luckily my youngest daughter, Sarah, after finishing her homework, managed to help me out for an hour before she went to bed, which was really nice of her and very much appreciated -- thank you again, Sarah!  Her older sister, Izzy, was still at school and I admit had already helped me a lot with the custom charts and cards for the game.

I stayed up boxing figures and terrain 'til about 3:00am, but only managed to load the very first of the 8 terrain boards into the car, and none of the 25 or so boxes of figures, terrain, and accessories...

Tuesday morning I overslept, then dove into loading the car to the gills.  It was close.  I knew it was going to be a lot more crowded than last time with the Maiwand game, since Maiwand didn't include a single hill, field, or lay-on road section and Charasiab has 7 large rocky hills, 8 low sandy hills, 24 road sections and a bunch of fields, as well as 3 villages.  By using just about eveyr square inch of space in the vehicle, plus its "German Engineering," which allows relatively easy access to almost every one of those square inches, I was just able to pack it all in.  The only empty space was the front passenger seat, which got filled with my knapsack and snacks for the road.

My wife was nice enough to help me with the last of the packing, and also labelled the boxes with numbers to make them much easier for me to keep track of, for which I thank her as well.  Of course the bigger thing to thank her for is not making a deal out of the fact that I am disappearing for 9 days to drive her car to New Orleans again, so I can run a game at a Wargaming Convetion again... but I guess she really loves me, and knows it is something I've been looking forward to for a long time now.

I need to get some sleep, so as the kids used to say a few years back, Peace Out...

...but first, here's a handful of pics illustrating this first leg of my 3-day road-trip:

Packed to the brim with stuff...

In the seat beside me, more stuff is my only passenger...

Late lunch/early dinner at Carnie's -- the best hot-dogs in
 LA, bar none -- a treat for myself before hitting the road...

Unfortunately being 3:00pm on a Tuesday afternoon in Los Angeles is no defense against traffic jams, nor is being watched over as you pass by on the freeway by a benevolent Giant Panda...

To make matters worse, it was cold (well, for Southern California) and it RAINED (good for the drought but bad for road conditions & traffic)...

Luckily I drove out of the storm and by the time I hit Palm Desert
and stopped at Costco for gas -- and more hot-dogs for dinner...

...there was no more rain falling.

Wish me luck and I'll hopefully be back tomorrow night with
an update from somewhere around San Antonio, Texas.

Until then, drive safely -- and Happy Gaming!


  1. A labor of love my friend!!!! It will all be so worth it when you see the looks on the gamers faces in NO when they see your masterpiece. I know as I will be one of them....

    Safe travels brother.

  2. Used to live for Carnie's on Sunset when I would go to LA for business. Incredible hot dogs -- and don't forget the tacos. You are a man of refined tastes, Guru.

  3. Safe journey and I'm guessing that you don't get the opportunity to indulge in hot dogs too often at home!

  4. Safe travels. I'll guess you won't be able to look another hot dog in the roll for some time after you get home. ;)

  5. Safe journey and may your game be a success at Colonial Barracks!!!

  6. Safe journey and may your game be a success at Colonial Barracks!!!

  7. Safe journey and good luck on the day!

  8. Great seeing you again and I hope the trip home was quiet and uneventful. I have finally posted my pictures of the convention to the Sword and the Flame site in 3 groups.