Welcome to this weeks Musings!
A Couple of Requests
This wasn’t my original starting point for this weeks Musings but I received a couple of requests to do something and decided I’d do so here rather than as part of a separate post.
First up is a reply to Faust at Double Down Dice and his recent tool tips article.
I found the article an interesting one. However much we like the actual doing side of things there is no getting away from the practical side of the hobby like storage and organisation. In response I mentioned that I used business card plastic boxes bought cheaply on EBay or Amazon and he asked if I could include a couple of photos so here you are!
Second up, Azazel in response to my Plymouth Model Show write-up Musings No: 19, asked if I could post details of the models I’d entered in the show.
Not wishing to let the great man down details appear below.
Further details on “Afternoon Tea” can be found via this link –
Further details on “Fantasy Island” can be found via this link –
She Who Must Be Obeyed
Those of you who follow this blog will be aware by now that when I refer to She Who Must Be Obeyed I am in fact referring to my good lady wife of 36 years, 39 years if you include the best 3 which took place before I committed to marriage. I jest! The thing is I realised the other day that SWMBO plays a significant role in my being able to spend time painting and modelling.
Just recently we were discussing how my son has women doing everything for him. Now this has nothing to do with his medical condition, he is more than capable of doing things for himself, he just doesn’t have to do so. His mum runs around after him, so does his girlfriend and her mother and the women he works with do the same. I pointed this out to SWMBO who informed me that I was just the same. I huffed and puffed and protested that she couldn’t be more wrong.
A few minutes later, the conversation having moved on she asked me “Would you like a cup of tea?”. I replied “I’d love one, just give me a minute to clean my brush and I’ll put the kettle on” to which she replied “No your OK I’ll do it, you carry on with your modelling”.
As she went off to the kitchen I thought to myself, she’s right the women in my life do run around after me too. Then again she could be using it as an opportunity to slowly poison me!
A couple of weeks ago in Mid Week Musings No: 18 I mentioned the idea of occasionally posting details on a hero of mine, for example this could be a real person or perhaps a book character. A couple of people made reference to the interpretation of the word “hero” so I checked out an online definition and came up with:-
A person who is admired for their courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities
The chief male character in a book, play, or film, who is typically identified with good qualities, and with whom the reader is expected to sympathize.
(In mythology and folklore) a person of superhuman qualities and often semi-divine origin, in particular one whose exploits were the subject of ancient Greek myths.
George Mallory (1886 – 1924)
I would like to say that George Mallory was a childhood hero of mine but he wasn’t. In fact I only came across him in 2009 when I read a book entitled “Paths of Glory” by Jeffrey Archer which was based on his life story. The book captivated me from the off. Quite why I had never heard of him until this point is a mystery to me. So taken was I with him that I wanted to read more. I bought several books about him, the most definitive account being “Into the Silence” by Wade Davis.
So who was Mallory?
Mallory from a very young age made a name for himself as a climber and was soon recognised as England’s best. He married, had children and served his country during the Great War where he fought at the Somme. An ordinary man who belonged to an incredible era, a period in history where the Union Jack flew over a quarter of the world’s surface and Great Britain ruled the waves. The British Empire in its heyday. The quest for people, supported by their countries, to conquer the unconquered and to map the unknown, was never greater. Mallory’s desire was to be the first man to reach the peak of the world’s highest mountain, Everest.
Funded by The National Geographic his first expedition in 1921 ended in failure. However, on the positive side a route to the summit had been identified and in 1924 a second expedition took place. Mallory, along with Scot Sandy Irvine, went hard for the summit and were last seen within 245 metres of the top. They were never seen again.
The question, which to this day remains unanswered is, did they reach the summit?
In 1999 Mallory’s body was found but to date, despite more recent attempts to do so, Irvine’ s body remains lost. Finding Irvine’s body is considered to hold the key to the unanswered question. It was Irvine who had the camera which would have been used to take pictures at the summit. Kodak believe any film may well have been preserved due to the freezing temperatures and therefore if found it might well be possible to develop any images. Only time will tell.
There is so much more to Mallory and this story. If you want to know more then I cannot recommend more highly either of the two books I have mentioned.
So why is this guy my number one hero? Well there are a few reasons.
The historical period alone is fascinating as are many of the other adventurers of the day. The story itself is a true Ripping Yarn in every sense. Then there is Mallory himself. Tall, dark and handsome. A soldier who served queen and country, survived the Somme and who was simply the best climber of his generation. Having confronted the war and seen death on a grand scale the risk of dieing held no fear, the guy was by all accounts driven and fearless. The endearing mystery of “did they didn’t they?” holds an element of romance to the point where do we even want to know if they made it or not? There is also the incredible fact that if they did manage to reach the peak then they did so almost 30 years before Hillary.
Notwithstanding the above there is one other reason why I love this man. Remember the years are 1921 and 1924. Climbing gear in those days amounted to little more than hob nailed boots, a wooly jumper, a hat and a scarf. When Mallory and his expedition set off it was to them little more than a jolly good walk!
We now live in a world where everything is exaggerated, people are called heroes for the least little thing (there are real heroes too of course). I wonder what the world would have made of Mallory today?
To me the man was amazing and he is my number one hero. An ordinary guy doing extraordinary things. Put simply he just got on with things and possessed a can do attitude which I can only envy.
So far I have been unable to find what I think would be a suitable figure to model. Perhaps one day one will turn up much like Mallory himself did back in 1999!
If anyone has any ideas on a figure(s) I’d love to know.
Until next time.