I was chatting to a friend the other day and she noted how many books about ships I had. I had to confess then that I loved ships. What a wonderful piece of machinery, especially the older steam vessels and naval vessels. The ship itself is one big machine served by a crew whose task it is is to keep everything burning and turning as it was.

The ironclads and pre-dreadnought naval vessels in particular, that odd synthesis of sail and steam vessels and of the early modern battleships. What wonderful machines, what wonderful madness.

I love wargaming as a hobby (even though I do have some ethical issues with it). I love playing the games and I love painting the figures. I love researching the Military History. The figure painting is my creative outlet and my means of stress control and relief. Really, after 60 minutes of painting nothing else exists in the world other than the figure and my brush. The research (and the writing that comes from that) is the intellectual exercise that keeps my brain working. The playing of the games is the fun and the socialising with other folks with a similar interest.

However, allowing for all the wargame figures I have from different periods and eras, allowing for all the books I have on military history generally and allowing for all the games I have played, the naval side of things is absolutely still my favourite.

Cast off and enjoy!

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