I recall an epoch where books about aviation and armor were practically non-existing. When you were building a model or in the middle of some project, you were on your own. It could be very frustrating and many times things died halfway completion or just simply were pushed to the side because the lack of information. There was no internet to help you, no googling and no browsing to assist you finding what you were looking for.
Then one sunny day, I was strolling along the storefronts of one of the main shopping arteries in my hometown and past a hobby store. I glanced thru the large showcase window, when my eye caught the profile of an airplane. Between dollhouses, puppetry, jigsaws and a few Airfix model kits, there was a small publication, buried and almost obscured from sight. But I noticed it and instantaneously it got my full attention. Still, I wanted to make sure what I had observed, was actually true so I pressed my face as dense as possible against the window, hereby leaving an embarrassing sweat print on the glass where the contour of part of my forehead and the socket of my left eye had been.
Yes! It was a book! More so, a book about airplanes. This needed to be investigated. I walked into the store and immediately the shriek clamor of an alarm bell went off followed by the swift manifestation from a dreary looking shopkeeper who with a graceful sway of his arm, appeared from behind a curtain fashioned from leftover fabric from his grandmother’s handmade summer dress.
I asked him about the publication and with an enthusiastic grin on his face, showed me the way between and alongside the clutter of all kind weird paraphernalia to the backspace in his shop. And there it was! In de middle of this lackluster room stood a carrousel with aviation books! It took my breath away. Suddenly the rack started to glow and I swear to this day I heard Angels sing!
The shopkeeper, observing my reaction and smelling a sale, told me he got the books imported from “Amerika” and his establishment was the only one in the whole Province that carried them. That’s when I first got my, then, trembling hands on a Squadron Signal book. It was instant love at first sight and it never stopped. Now almost 40 years later I have quite a collection and am still convinced that price/value wise, they are the best game in town.
The “Squad Sig” team, consists out of a bunch of dedicated authors, editors and historians who won’t leave a stone unturned to give you the best model related publication for a decent and fair price. I can guarantee this because many became dear friends.
Looking back, the world is a small place. 40 years ago in another continent, when I stood drooling in front of a miniature merry-go-round, filled with aviation books, I would never have dreamed that one day I would find myself surrounded by the same group of fine individuals that gave me so much reading pleasure and satisfaction exercising my hobby for all those years. I am grateful to MMD and Squadron to have kept the banner high for all this time and supplied us with a service that has set this industry’s pace and standard. Squadron deserves all the loyalty they can muster. They sure have mine for another 40 years. That is, if I make it that long…