For a variety of reasons this post has taken a while to get to and as a result is in fact a combination of three. Christmas has been and gone but Maison Crook has been busy with all the usual pleasantries - Christmas Eve at the local church for their Christingle concert, family visits and the sheer joy of having our 5 year old grandson to stay. Needless to say industrial sized quantities of Lego have been built and repaired as well as umpteen readings of the assorted Marvel Heroes adventures (note to self - I must make a concerted effort to acquaint myself further with the adventures of Iron Man and Captain America). We have certainly eaten too much and and have (probably) drank too much as well but it is only once a year after all.
The last time I met up with Paul was around 6 years ago so it was a real delight when he mentioned that he and his family were passing through London en route down under (via Norway for Christmas) and that a meeting could be slotted in. We spent a very pleasant Monday afternoon including a very good lunch, numerous examples of the Brewers art (ahem...) and a flying visit to both the Orc's Nest and Forbidden Planet. We talked gaming, life, the universe and everything in it - and also swapped a couple of purchases to avoid ruinous shipping charges. I will describe mine a little later but will refrain from mentioning my side of the arrangement as I am sure that Paul will prefer that pleasure in due course! Reilly is a delight to talk to and I have seldom met a more grounded and mature 14 year old - you do not get to be an Eagle Scout for nothing - and it was a privilege to meet him. I would certainly not want to play Bloodbowl with him though - he sounds far too good for my modest abilities!
So to sum up this part of the post I had a really good afternoon with an old friend and his son which really set the tone for Christmas. I should also point out that whilst the new Star Wars film was discussed at length Paul was diplomatic enough NOT to tell me what happened other than that they both really enjoyed it!