I focused then on the left-bottom foreground figures which were brightly colored and of a larger proportion that somehow helped their related pieces stand out among in the jumble of vaguer ones. After most of the figures were done by the end of March in the second year of work, my puzzle progress was crawling along at 10 or less pieces per day for months. Still I proclaimed that the puzzle was defeated.
To underscore this sense of victory I marched the pieces up the middle of the puzzle to the very center, slowly, very slowly, until the resistance of the puzzle was mortally wounded. That done, I finished the lower third completely and peacefully, feeling no rush to finish.
Next I filled in the fields and town on the West side of the tower, then did the same on the right side. The tower was now completely outlined with the lower half completed, the unfinished portion of the puzzle now resembling the dial on a Krell generator. I began filling that shape in with a counter-clockwise blitzkrieg that continued for two weeks. I curled around the center to the bottom and then up again, the final piece coming high in the west tower wall.
What a rush!