20 December 2014

Pontonier Update #6: The Pontoons. . .

A leisurely stroll with the paintbrush today, finishing the two pontoons manned by my David Soul look-alike in 1/56 scale and his three companions.

One of those truly delightful (and all too rare) totally relaxed Saturday afternoons here today.  A dark, chilly winter's day outside, a quiet and yet festive atmosphere inside.  The Grand Duchess and I submitted our final grades yesterday afternoon and are now well and truly finished with school work and students until after the first of the year.  We sent out the last of our Christmas cards this morning, the house is decorated, and the shopping finished.  Whew!  

The Young Master, while suffering from a small cold, is currently ensconced on the loveseat in the TV room watching episodes of Daniel Tiger online, and yours truly has enjoyed an extremely pleasant few hours down here in Zum Stollenkeller with the cats today, listening to Christmas Jazz as well as traditional English Christmas carols online.  The Christmas Festival can come along any time now.  

And here is a photograph of the now finished pontoons, commanded by David Soul's great, great, great, great, great grand something-or-other at right.  The outside of the pontoons have three coats of Citadel copper while the insides were coated first in a dark red and then boards were carefully picked out with a brighter red.  I've tried to made the figure bases fairly inconspicuous.  Ok, let the glossing of the 24 pontoniers, four oarsmen, and two spare pontoons begin!

Life has its stresses and frustrations, yes, but at this moment, I feel more relaxed, happy, and extremely fortunate than I have felt since, well, last summer before the fall term began.  Clearly, the key is having enough time to slow down, reflect quietly, and, as a result, be able to hear oneself think.  Know what I mean?

-- Stokes

Another vintage Swedish Christmas greeting today, depicting Tomte, the Swedish cousin of the Norwegian Julenissen, lighting the candles on a snow-covered Fir or Spruce.

As far as rules for the use of pontoniers on the tabletop and bridge construction, I'll dig around and see what Charles S. Grant suggests.  I'll also see what he has suggested in various books and Table Top Teasers from the past as far as scenarios are concerned.  It will be nice to wrap these figures up and move onto something else.  I realize that I've spent all of 2014, where rare and precious free time has been available, assembling and painting the now rather large generic mid-18th century pontoon and supply train.  Great fun and a welcomed change of pace, but it's time to get back to some officer vignettes and the fighting end of things. Finally, the officer in charge of the pontoniers will be an Englishman, General Cadfael Huffington-Blather, on loan to Stollen from the Electorate of Brunswick-L├╝neburg, a.k.a. Hanover.  To represent him and his to subordinate officers, I will paint up the Duke of Cumberland figure et al sold by Crann Tara Miniatures.

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