29 July 2011

Late Summer Maneuvers. . .

 The tactically adept -- or at least high-rolling -- Colonel von Adalnowski, a retired Stollenian officer and bon vivant of considerable notoriety.

As August approaches, the time for annual late summer maneuvers is upon us in the Grand Duchy of Stollen.  It comes as no surprise, then, that the army has departed this week for the more open country of the northeast where such maneuvers are typically held each year.  However, due to a recent lateral promotion, the young Major von Topfsange (pictured below) finds himself inexplicably left behind and confined to a corner desk job in some  government office building or other in the capital city Krankenstadt.

"Plodding, plodding, plodding," grumbled von Topfsange, "Does this paperwork never end?  I should be leading a regiment or two of cavalry on those blasted maneuvers!"  As the major continued to read through another one of the seemingly endless form letters, signing and stamping it with a government seal before placing it in the outgoing letter tray on his tiny escritoire, he ground his teeth together in frustration, an activity in which he has indulged all week.

"And I've chewed through three clay pipe stems in the last seven days!" fumed von Topfsange testily.

No matter though, since the young Major received an invitation in yesterday's mail from Colonel von Adalnowksi, to join him at the latter's country estate starting on Saturday for more than a week's worth of hunting, fine dining (the Colonel's vast estate boasts some of the tenderest, most delectable wild boar around), good wine, and the occasional evening ball.

Naturally, the visit will also involve a some sort of tactical challenge on the wargaming table, an activity that is always a part of these visits.  Perhaps young von Topfsange will best the older, craftier Colonel this year?

"And maybe the ravishing Viviane l'Vivandiere will join me to count the stars a time or three," reflected von Topfsange merrily, signing and stamping another form with great flourish.

Meanwhile, in the real world, the Grand Duchess and Young Master Paul are about to embark on a nine-day visit to the maternal grandparents in the Pacific Northwest, and that means. . .  Lots of free time!  The possibility is, therefore, ripe for a small solo game.  Stay tuned for further developments though I can tell you that the coming game will be based on a Tabletop Teaser by Charles Grant and include a surprise or two for added tactical interest. . .  which is to say frustration on the part of Colonel von Adalnowski and his guest, the young Major von Topfsange.

On the hussar-painting front, the less said the better.  I haven't been happy with early painting thus far.  The wash method doesn't seem to be working for me, and I've tried it with oils and acrylics.  Differing and conflicting uniform information on the net has complicated matters too as  I struggle, both mentally and with the paintbrush, to get it right.  I fear I've caught the dreaded perfectionist's bug, but the Minden castings are so nice that they seem to deserve nothing less than the best I can muster.  Grrrrrrrr!

The smartly uniformed, though tactically challenged, Major von Topfsange.


guy said...

My family free week starts in a weeks time when the girls all decamp to the outlaws primarily to collect the dog who has been on holiday with them while we have been in the Med.

I am already plotting and planning my painting blitz. I have 28 perry plastic hussars and 4 converted old foundry metal chasseurs a cheval of the guard to paint up. The chasseurs include that great officer semi turning round as in the famous painting. I chopped their heads off and added new hussar heads to give me a full regiment of 32. They are all under coated and ready to go.

Just received my copy of issue no 4of Phil Olney's Classic Wargaming. apparently the alst for a little while as he has other commitments.


Grimsby Mariner said...

Don't get a week to myself so have to take the odd day here and there. I am lucky though that I've just had a week off and the wife has idly left me alone in the painting room when I've wanted to recharge the batteries.


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