The kids summer break has started and the wife and I decided to get things going by taking them to the beach. The weather has been particularly good lately but the forecast was a little changeable so we packed for every eventuality. Consequently the boot of the car was packed with every imaginable item we might need for a day out.... except my bag and more importantly my current book. I didn't realise my mistake until we reached our destination and started to unpack. Needless to say I was annoyed with myself for forgetting my bag and for a while I felt slightly panicky when I realised I had the whole day before me with nothing to read.
The beach combing netted me several small shells and stones to use as basing material on my models and a small quantity of fine grained sand which I'm now in the process of drying thoroughly. Beach sand is irregular and varied and I think it makes much better basing sand than anything bought in a shop. I hasten to add I'm not suggesting you go out and raid the beach until it ceases to exist, particularly if its a protected coastline.
After the history lesson we had a wargame on the beach. This followed the age old principle of building opposing sandcastles and then knocking them down with stones thrown turn by turn. It seems my aim isn't as good as that of my 5 year old and my castle was soon in ruins and sueing for peace.
Bit by bit the whole day passed by and we had had a great time. My wife made me chuckle when she made a comment about me managing to get through a whole day without my "toy soldiers". Little did she know.