21 October

Inktober day 21 is Sleep. After their early morning walk and a quick breakfast Nuala and Fletcher settle down for a sleep until the next opportunity to eat comes around. They take turns to sleep in the chair and on the stool. It’s the only chair in the house they are allowed on so they make the most of it. However they do have beds scattered around the house, there is one in the hall, two in our bedroom, one in my studio and an old sofa they are allowed on in the front bedroom that used to be my office. They’re not spoilt are they.

19 October

Inktober day 19 Dizzy. I think most kids love fairground rides but as we grow older we can visualise all the things that can go wrong with large mechanical structures! I have dangled under a helicopter on several occasions while on exercise with the Coastguard and been lowered into speeding boats but you wouldn’t get me on this ride for anything! I think one of the girls may agree with me.

18 October

Inktober day 18 and today’s word is Trap. I think we all know the feeling when we have driven past one of these steely eyed traffic police, was I speeding or not? I don’t think so but I can’t be certain. Then comes the long wait to see what comes through the post. I don’t want to tempt fate but I haven’t had a ticket since 2008, you have to be careful when your son is a traffic cop!

17 October

Inktober day 17 and today’s word is Storm. A storm is defined as winds of force 10 on the Beaufort scale. In 20 years of being in the Coastguard I was lucky enough to avoid being at sea in a storm, the only time was as a passenger on a truck ferry returning from France to Poole. I think it was the Purbeck. I was in a bunk across the ship so as it rolled I stood on my feet and then my head, even I found sleep impossible in those conditions. I have sailed in a gale (force 8) on a yacht racing in the channel and thoroughly enjoyed it but never a storm.

16 October

Inktober day 16 and today’s word is Rocket. The Congreve rocket was used in the Napoleonic wars by the British. They were notoriously inaccurate and generally caused chaos and confusion to both sides. They also scared the horses which is why the general in this picture is riding a pantomime horse!

15 October

Inktober day 15 and today’s prompt is Outpost. In the Hollywood westerns of my childhood this was the moment when the cavalry came riding over the hill in the nick of time to save the outpost from the savage Indians. Now that I have read a little American history I realise that the conflict was all about land grabbing and the savage Indians were the native Americans and the settlers defended by the cavalry were the immigrants from the UK and Europe who were claiming the land as their own. Even the heroic defence at the Alamo was an attempt to settle land owned by Mexico. The Mexicans didn’t like it either.

14 October

Today’s Inktober prompt is Armor which I assume is an American spelling of Armour. I chose to draw two of Rome’s finest being dressed down by their centurion. I have always admired the cartoons of Albert Uderzo who created Asterix along with Rene Goscinny. Albert Uderzo dies in March this year aged 93 but I am sure Asterix will live on forever.