This site was created to provide identity verification for the Mastodon Social Network. Initially, a single page, but now a growing repository of articles on board and table games.
I'm English and was born in 1948. These days I live in the county of Norfolk with Diana, my wife. Norfolk is famous for a number of things. Like Cornwall, you never pass through Norfolk, It's always your destination or, at least, a deliberate diversion. Also like Cornwall, there are no motorways so it pays to "slow yew dun bor" (to attempt to write in dialect)!
Let's explain a little bit about the things you see in my Mastodon account header image that you see above. Each item is there as it is one of the things that I'm most likely to be posting about. We'll work from left to right...
- Board Games
In the top left you see just part of my collection of board games. I've been buying and playing them since I was about nine years old with varying levels of intensity. These days Diana and family members will buy them as presents. Back in the late 1970s I briefly published a games fanzine. Others had exotic names like "Perfidious Albion" or "White Dwarf". Mine was called "Games by Post". In the 1980s I wrote a few articles for "The Gamer", a mainstream magazine you could even buy in the likes of W.H. Smiths. One year, in the month leading up to Christmas, I also had a board games column published that appeared in the local paper in Peterborough.
I didn't intend this site to be any more than a way of verifying my Mastodon account. However, I find myself adding a Games Section to provide some background to my first post. The section may yet grow further.
To the right of the games you see a photograph of my brother and I in Just 17, my SeaHawk yacht, during my first attempt at the Three Rivers Race. I bought the boat and created the SeaHawk web site in 2004. I sold her in 2018 but still maintain the SeaHawk site.
The GregAfloat site is my boating biography, and contains a record of all sorts of boating experiences from punting in Surrey to canoeing through the only canal tunnel in Germany and on the way, reports of holidays on the Llangollen Canal in 1963 and 1970, a trip from Lancaster to Skipton via the Ribble Link in 2003 and my three attempts at the Three Rivers Race.
These days you can expect an increasing collection of entries in a new Our Safari section of the GregAfloat site. That's the boat shown in the header image beneath the SeaHawk. It's an almost 50 year old Hampton Safari which took a while to bring back to the Norfolk Broads from the Great Ouse. Inevitably, I'm now busy building a site about the Hampton Safari.
- The next bunch of three images encapsulate my musical activities. I'm pictured playing harmonica, which most say is my best instrument. Starting in the 1960s I used to play in folk clubs. By the mid-1970s I was playing in a One Man Band. It was revived briefly in 2012 but other things got in the way after that. For example, there was The Proper Jobbies, who did monthly sing-along sessions at the pub where my SeaHawk was moored. That band even began what our leader called a World Tour! Emerging from that was the Muddy Broad Blues Band. After four years I left and various short lived bands followed. These days, given half a chance, I'll play all manner of instruments, including guitar, in both conventional and open tunings, sometimes with a slide. I still have my 12-string and recently acquired a square-necked Dobro. I'll also turn my hand to banjo, ukulele, bongos, cajon, washboard. You'll often find me playing bass on Sundays. My current bands are Bar Room Blues and Out of Egypt although, since COVID due to various happenings the gospel band has not been able to perform.
- The final cluster of four images represent the wildlife we see from our home. There's a lake behind Ruston House and the web site is used mainly to record the wildlife we see from it or its grounds. It's just not right to call it a garden. We see all the obvious birds, like heron, kingfishers and various ducks. Swans, Canada Geese, mallard and moorhens all have nested but there's much more to be seen. Our wildlife cameras have captured four species of deer, foxes, stoats, badgers and more. How much longer I'll continue to maintain the site is an unknown as the place is currently on the market.
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