Friday, 19 November 2010

Busy Blog Week

Being retired I have never found it difficult to keep the blog up to date, particularly as wargaming has played a much larger part in our life since we retired and moved to Spain four years ago.

Last week we were to Morocco on a week's holiday with a group of friends we walk with regularly. We hired a coach and visited Tangier, Rabat, Casablanca, Marakesh and Fez. The company who supplied the coach run regular tours of Spain and Morocco, and organised the whole thing. So all we had to do was enjoy ourselves.

I thought that I would miss the computer and the blogs, but to be honest I didn't. There was so much to see and do that I only gave an occasional thought to the PBEM campaign.

But returning home last Saturday I realised that all of the blogs were out of date, and I would have to catch up on them. I say "all" because there are five which I post on at least once a week.

First, and foremost, is of course this one. This is a summary of anything that is happening and tends to cover the thing I am currently most occupied with.

Bautzen battlefield 19 August 1999
Second is "Walking Napoleonic Battlefields". I have been doing this one for over a year. It is a record of all the battlefields Jan and I have visited, and I am quite surprised to realise how many that is. The series has already covered five holidays so far, three in Portugal and Spain, one in the Pyrenees and one at Austerlitz. The current one is a visit to what used to be East Germany and includes Jena and the 1813 Campaign. The latest blog is about our visit to Bautzen.

Jan and I outside the Casablanca Mosque
Third is "Jan and Paul in Spain 2010". This series was started to keep friends and family in UK up to date and what we were doing since we moved to Spain. It is now read by many of the two local walking groups we walk with each week. This is the one which has kept me most busy this week, as I try to catch up with our holiday in Morocco. This blog is also a record of our weekly Monday Club walks, and informs all of the group of the next walk. I normally publish it by Tuesday, but I want to finish the Morocco series first. I am hoping to publish last Monday's walk by Sunday!

Table at start of Battle of Valladolid

Fourth is 1813 Valladolid Campaign. This is the latest in my ongoing 1813 campaign. Fortunately we have a battle report in hand, so I did not have to do any work on it, just publish the latest instalment of the Battle of Valladolid.

PBEM Campaign latest situation
And fifth is the new PBEM 1813 Hanover Campaign. This is a test campaign to play test the new campaign rules to transfer my 1813 campaign from solo to PBEM. The rules are working well, but there is a big job keeping track of the ten players and ensuring that their orders are in the correct format and agree with the rules. This is only to be expected with a new campaign, new rules and new players. But it does involve a lot of work. I have just finished the third campaign day, and posted the campaign diary for the second day
When I was working I remember that older friends who had already retired used to say things like "I don't know how ever got everything done when I was working". If I was not sure what they meant then, I certainly know now!
But it is, as they say, a labour of love. Its a great way to share the hobby, and it never ceases to surprise me how many people read the blogs. I was particularly surprised to find that more than half the hits on Jan and Paul in Spain are from the USA. I assume that they follow a link from this blog, or perhaps one of the campaign blogs. Its strange to think that all of those people I have never met or even exchanged mail with would be interested enough to do so.
Anyway all of the blogs are now up to date. I can take a well deserved break as Jan and I sit on the naya with a cup of coffee (its too early for anything stronger) and a good book.
Thank you all who bother to read the blog. Without your (mostly silent) support I doubt that it would still be going after almost two years.

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